This past fall, I made a change to a new nutrition coach and am using an IIFYM (if it fits your macros) approach to my food. This is something I was very familiar with, but hadn’t used it myself. What it boils down to is that there are 3 major macro nutrients: proteins, fats, carbs. Each week my coach sends me a set of macros for my workout days, rest days, and refeed day. I input those macros into my “my macros plus” app and those are the macros I need to hit for that day.
For example: My macros on a given week for a workout day might be – 140g protein, 180g carbs (with 25-30g from fiber), 50g fat. As I go through my day, I log each calorie I intake and it contributes to 1-3 of those macronutrients. I am currently doing a ‘reverse diet’ — which basically means my coach is adding macros each week gradually (because my macros were all very low coming off of an NPC competition) in order to help me maintain the weight I am at while simultaneously helping my metabolism get back up to a regular functioning level for someone of my height/weight.
My last 8 weeks on a reverse diet (oct 8th was a week before my NPC show & I have lost 3lbs since the show while increasing all the macros):
After being on a meal plan the last few years, I am LOVING the macro-approach and getting to bake and create/adapt recipes in the kitchen. The thing that has been very emotional/mentally-healing with a macro-approach is that there are NO foods that are off-limits. There are no good or bad foods — foods are just sources of protein/fat/carbs. Yes, some foods might be higher sources of those macro nutrients, but all foods are permissible in my macro-plans as long as I can make them “fit my macros” for the day.
One thing I have not previously been open about but have been in past weeks is that I have dealt with a binge-eating disorder much of my life as a result of restricting calories or foods. The binges were a result of either restricting myself to certain foods (& this would result in overeating of foods that were ‘off limits’ in my diet at one sitting), or a result of restricting calories/overexercising (which resulted in uncontrolled eating sessions 1-2x a week), or a result of both of these combined. This type of eating pattern was very cyclical. I would restrict hardcore, binge, feel guilty, resolve to restrict better and never do it again, then repeat. 😦 I’ve been living this way since high school when my growth spurt ended and I hit that phase of wanting to look a specific way.
I actually believed a LOT of the time that I was committing to being ‘healthy’ by resolving to only eat vegan or paleo or stick with a meal plan. But, what I’m seeing is that the framework of the resolution was unhealthy — having things that were ‘off limits’ or seeing foods as bad/good mentally set me up to feel deprived. With IIFYM, there is no deprivation, just correct portioning of the foods of my choice. I have a BIG sweet tooth, so one of my FAVORITE things the past couple of months has been creating macro-friendly versions of cookies/waffles/cakes and ice cream! I have been perusing a ridiculous amount of blogs/websites of other foodie folks, and have decided to add a recipe tab to my own page to share some of my favorite macro-friendly recipes.
My type of recipe is one that uses a minimal amount of ingredients (like 5 or under ideally) but still tastes pretty yummy! I hope you enjoy this new section!
To kick this off, I am going to share my ALL-time favorite: Protein Ice CREAM — this is an awesome recipe because it has such a high volume, great protein macros, and can be paired with any topping to add some fats/carbs according to your macro-needs. I eat this ice cream 2-3 times a day (usually my first and last meal) and often another one in between 🙂
I use the my macros plus app to track my macros — it costs 2.99 to purchase the app but is the best tracker in my opinion! I recommend it in the nutrition section of my CARVE program and also to my clients and social media followers.
The macros for my PES ice cream is: 24p, 2.8c, 1.5f … then I just add whatever my toppings are! This is my “christmas-y fluff” with a couple squares of gingerbread spice chocolate! The macros for the following pic are 25p, 8c, 5f (I added 1 square of chocolate to my regular fluff).
To make your own Protein FLUFF Ice Cream!!
I recommend a really good larger sized Blender (it will need to be able to crush ice). The BEST one (the one I use) is a 900W Nutribullet with a 32oz cup. (my ninja blender also works, but not as well)
- 2 cups ice
- 1 cup water
- 1 scoop protein powder (my favorite is PEScience, but it also works with other protein powders — like Quest or ON or Dymatize or BPI — the PES just seems to be a bit creamier and hold its flavor better)
- 1/2tsp xanthan gum
- 1/4tsp guar gum
- (protein and gums can all be found on bodybuilding.com)
Directions: BLEND for about a minute until its thick and CREAMY! 🙂 Add toppings and ENJOY!!!