Howdy folks :o) Happy Hump Day!
This is the first fitness-related post this blog has seen in a while. If you’re already a macro veteran, scroll down to the video for the recipe and the how-to. Ingredients list is in the bottom bar on the YouTube channel!
The rest of you may be wondering, “What the hell are macros?” Without getting too far down in the weeds, read on for a brief overview of what they are and why bodybuilders count them.
The abbreviation “macros” refers to “macronutrients.” There are three that humans need in relatively large amounts to function normally. Fats, carbohydrates, and protein are the three macronutrients.
But wait a minute, don’t we use calories to function? We do! Our calories come from macronutrients, in the following proportions:
1g Fat = 9 calories
1g Carbohydrate = 4 calories
1g Protein = 4 calories
The body uses each of the three for something different. To keep it simple, fats are essential for healthy organ and cell function; carbohydrates are the body’s primary energy source; and protein is used as a building block for muscle and tissue repair.
There are scientists crying somewhere about the generality of those statements.
To demonstrate why fitness folks count their macros instead of calories, I’ll use an example. Suppose Person A consumes roughly 2,000 calories in a day, broken down as follows:
225g carbohydrates (x 4 calories per gram) = 900 calories
50g protein (x 4 calories per gram) = 200 calories
100g fat (x 9 calories per gram) = 900 calories
This person’s primary sources of calories are fats and carbohydrates. Now let’s look at Person B’s diet:
225g carbohydrates (x 4) = 900 calories
160g protein (x 4) = 640 calories
50g fat (x 9) = 450 calories
(I realize this is only 1990 calories, not 2000, but I’m trying to keep numbers simple here.)
Let’s look at the difference. Person A and Person B are eating the same amount of carbohydrates. But Person B is making up more of their remaining caloric intake with protein rather than fat, which will make Person B more capable of building lean mass, or muscle, even though Person B is eating roughly the same amount of calories as Person A. Person B’s body will be able to USE those calories differently. Make sense?
This is why bodybuilders need to know not only how much they’re eating, but how much they’re eating of which macronutrient.
Now, it’s important to remember that everyone’s body responds differently to fluctuations in their macros. This can be affected by body type, genetic predispositions, activity levels, and a myriad of other factors. But that’s a post for another day.
Now that you’ve got a basic primer on macros and why in the world I’m inventing recipes based on them, on to the video!