read time: 5 minutes
Author: Dr. Alli
I put together this overview of what I eat in a day This was from when I was on a 4-week cut - my macros have changed since then as I didn't want to stay too low for too long. My macros change dependent on my training, and my goals. After I got back from an indulgent week in Cabo- getting engaged means lots of champagne ;), I decided to put myself on this cut. However, it hardly looks like I was depriving myself… doesn't it?! If you do it right, even daily nutrition aimed at cutting fat can mean plenty of food!
This sample day is for educational purposes only. Everyone requires a unique amount specific to their individual needs! That's why working with a coach for at least 12 weeks is important for proper setting and adjusting of your macros, as well as for careful monitoring of your cut, bulk and/or athletic performance support!
Fibre one brownie
Chicken Salad & 2 caramel chocolate rice Cake
150g chicken breast
2 tbsp Guacamole & Balsalmic vinagrette dressing
Chopped romaine lettuce heart
+ 2 rice cakes
Apple & 2 tbsp Peanut Butter
Chicken, Sweet Potato & Salad
Chicken Thighs (160g)
1 cup Sweet Potato
total for the day:
The quest bar is easy to grab and eat, but might not leave you feeling full…. you can get the same macros but way more volume if you turn it into some good, whole foods like veggies/fruits etc.
Can you believe how much food you can eat while on a 'cut?!'
- Dr. Cain
Dr. Alli Cain is a Chiropractor & co-owner of CrossFit Groundworx in Newmarket, ON.
Her mission is to be a catalyst for as many people as possible to take control over their health, fitness & well-being. Follow her on instagram @drallicain
Read time: 5 minutes
CrossFit HQ shared a post about macros which stimulated some good conversation this past week. One of our macros team members, Nikki, and I had a great chat about what macros really is vs. what the perception of macros is.
Have a read below.
I'll start by saying I think you do a very good job of promoting healthy choices vs not-so-healthy. It's evident in practically all your communication one way or another - blog, FB posts, etc. So, we are never led to believe that filling our macros with donuts and bacon will yield the same results as filling our macros with chicken and spinach (and Quest bars). The scale is one thing - how you feel and perform is another.
I found the post striking because I felt the same way: really really gung ho to start, not eating junk to fill my allowance at all, and having tremendous results. Then slowly adding in other stuff. The odd cookie. Pizza, etc. But I fast-forwarded the same way the blog author describes: I slipped into filling my macros on some days with more junk. But they fit , so it was okay.
So really the thing is more the 80--20 rule (which the blog author doesn't mention). Would I be able to give up homemade pasta for life or never eat fries or pancakes again? No way. But I think the key is sticking to the 80-20 rule.
Macros work -- they work even better when you eat good food. Not to mention how you feel in general.
More interestingly is why we fall off the macro wagon at all -- for example, I had a good day yesterday macro and workout wise, until I got some bad news, then told myself not to go ahead and eat shit just cause I thought this was a reasonable excuse. This worked until about 9 pm when I scarfed two bowls of cereal. What then? That has nothing to do with macros at all (I'm trying to reprogram this behaviour, somehow. Maybe I need to just buy myself a new pair of Nanos or a new book or something instead of eating).
Anyway -- the post had some good points, but I don't think macros need to die a slow death. We need to eat high-quality food as athletes as the article notes, BUT within the macro parameters tailor-made for us!
That's it from me :)
Great points. The reason macros has blown up in the functional fitness community is because it takes a real life approach, it rids ourselves of the 'shame' we may have once get when we venture off the whole food/paleo path, and it promotes an actual understanding of what food is, and how we can use it to get the best performance out of our body.
- Dr. Alli
Read time: 4 minutes
By: Dr. Alli
Nothing can be more frustrating than deciding to start a nutrition program like counting your macros, and not seeing any progress.
If this is happening to you, you could be making one or all of these errors…
Be honest with yourself when reading this blog.
Are one of these critical errors responsible for your lack of progress?
1. Your calories/TDEE (total daily energy expenditure) should be much lower than you set them at.
You've decided to go about tracking macros on your own and need a starting point with your calories and macro targets. Your friend has been tracking their own macros for a few weeks and decides to guess at what you should set your number at. Or, maybe you download a tracking app, put in your stats and away you go with the number the technology spits back at you.
The problem I often see is that people overestimate their activity levels in a day, and thus their macros calculation is set far too high for their actual energy expenditure needs for fat loss.
They start diligently tracking away, and hitting the gym….. 2-3 weeks go by and NO progress is made.
They think "I guess macros just doesn't work for me…."
If you haven't had somebody set your calculation specifically for you, it should probably be lower if fat loss is your goal.
2. You are only looking at the scale for success.
A HUGE, massive, critical error when starting to count your macros is making your only marker of progress looking at your bodyweight on the scale.
If you are tracking your macros you need also to be tracking your body measurements, as well as other markers of progress like performance in the gym, how your clothes fit, energy levels etc.
The scale will never tell you if you've:
In fact, a week ago I got my hair cut and I weighed myself before and after, just to show what a joke the 'scale' is in actually telling me about my body. From pre to post chop (2 hours, no water and lots of hair later) I "lost" 0.5lb based on the scale.
What a joke the scale can be!
3. You have binge days & do away with all your previous hard work.
If you are meticulously tracking your macros, and doing a great job staying within your targets… but Saturday rolls around and that bottle of wine just drinks itself……you could be undoing all the hard work you've put in the week before.
Yes, unfortunately it can be that easy to put your body from caloric deficit into weight maintenance mode. Your body is a continuous, dynamic process and as such, your "bad nutrition days" cannot outperform your "good days" if you expect to see long term success.
4. You burn fat less calories on a workout day than you think.
After you have set your macros & you're ready to hit the gym to gain some muscle while shedding fat, you may think that you can 'burn extra calories' and then add those back in on your workout days.
This is a huge mistake!
Caloric burn estimates are wildly inaccurate. Your body is not listening to what your FitBit says.
You might think your 40-minute lift burned enough calories to justify an extra helping at dinner - but it didn't…. especially if you are someone who sits all day and works out frequently to 'make up for it.'
You still may be considered to have low activity during the day….. and any extra calories beyond your macros target can stall your progress.
5. You jump on board the pizza/donuts/'as long as it fits!' mantra
Yes, you can eat whatever you want when counting your macros. So long as it fits your daily targets, you will see progress. However, the quality of food should not be ignored just because you see the #iifym attached to pizza, donuts, cookies & beer on your insta. Ignoring high quality foods is certainly a detriment to your health, and will eventually catch up to you as you loosen up your weighing, measuring and tracking.
I like to coach people to follow the 80/20 rule. 80% high quality foods - vegetables, lean meats, fruits…and 20% food that they consider indulgent. Starting to count your macros is not an excuse to add back in pre-packaged, processed and high sugar foods.
If you think you're making one or all of these errors, I'd love to help you. please visit my inquiries page and shoot me a message.
Yours in health,
- Dr. Alli
I am currently accepting 3 people for a 12 week fat loss program! If you're ready for a change….. commit to yourself and to me for 12 weeks and see what your body can do!
Dr. Alli Cain Team
Our mission is to act as a catalyst for as many people as possible to make a meaningful change to their health.