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Macros??

You have probably heard of these before, perhaps you have overheard someone at the water fountain saying ‘what’s your macros’ – perhaps not…

Anyway they are a pretty fundamental part of nutrition and if you care slightly about your body (which I guess you do since your here) it is your job to understand them and keep reading.

‘Macros’ is basically a short way to say ‘macronutrients’. Macronutrients are groups of nutrients that provide the body with energy.

The 3 main ones are:

  • Protein: 1g = 4 calories
  • Carbohydrates: 1g = 4 calories
  • Fat: 1g = 9 calories

”Ahh, now I know what you mean!”

I thought it would be cool to go through each macro nutrient so you know what is what, the best sources, sources to avoid, and how much you should consume of each.

This is part 1 of 3, which will give you the foundational knowledge before going into how you can calculate your own personal macro nutrients targets. By hitting these targets we completely take away the guess work from your diet, and guarantee results.

This will also be useful if flexible dieting is appealing and you would like to join the If It Fits Your Macros tribe of bros (IIFYM).

Protein

Proteins are an essential part of every diet, they are the building blocks of the human body. From building new muscle tissue, to repairing old, protein is a staple and usually the first thing we look at in any diet for people looking to lose weight or build more strength and muscle mass.

What we are looking for in our diet is complete proteins, these are protein sources which contain all the essential amino acids.

Amino acids: are the compounds that build together to make a protein molecules. When protein is digested it is broken down into amino acids for the body to use.

There are two types of amino acids:

  • Essential amino acids – cannot be made by the body so therefore we need to consume them in our diet daily.
  • Non-essential – are produced naturally so we don’t need to consume more.

What sources should I consume?

The most rich sources are the obvious; chicken, meat, fish, eggs, dairy products and nuts.

But I would like to categorise them into:

  • Lean animal sources
  • Lean vegetarian sources
  • Protein/fats
  • Vegetarian friendly

Lean proteins are very low in anything other than protein. So is a great option if you only need to consume more protein.

Protein/Fats are options that contain a high amount of fat also – the amount depends on the type of meat .e.g. Sirloin steak contains more fat than Fillet. Think about full fat varieties of bacon and minced meat.

Vegetarians or vegans have more trouble here because animal proteins contain a high amount of protein per portion. We still need to be sure to get adequate protein into our diet and for this I usually recommend taking a protein supplement on top of consuming more vegetarian friendly options each meal.

Vegans can consume soy or pea protein supplements, but want to avoid whey protein, because this is actually an animal protein made from cows milk.

How much protein should I consume?

The amounts people recommend can vary so much.

The old nutritionist told us 0.8g per kg of body weight.

The body builder in the gym across the street said to take 3.5g per kg???

From an exercise nutrition standpoint someone who exercises 3x per week should aim for approx. 2.2g per kg of body weight per day. But higher levels could be recommended depending on your personal goal. I would rarely go lower than this.

e.g. 75kg x 2.2 = 165g per day

So there you go. Next we will touch on Fats.

Your body is your machine (https://www.theblueprintdubai.com/blog/2016/8/21/your-body-is-your-machine)

Some of the most flawed excuses for not exercising I hear today is:

  • I don’t have time to exercise
  • I don’t have a gym membership
  • I travel too often
  • I don’t know what to do

Well to answer the first 3 there is literally so much you can do with your own body! You can get a great high intensity workout done in less than 20 minutes and complete it every morning. To answer the 4th question, I am going to show you 3 workouts you can do at home or when travelling.

Sweet right?

Putting it into perspective having a fancy gym is nice, and so would working the hours you expected to work. In reality things change and we have to adapt to these changes, not just except them waiting for ideal situations.

What are HIIT workouts?

HIIT or high intensity interval training, is a training technique where you give an all out effort for a certain amount of time followed by a short, sometimes active, recovery period. The benefits of this is that it gets your heart rate up fast and allows you to burn more body fat in less time. We can also combine strength and conditioning exercises, creating effective, challenging circuits.

These workouts are ideal for everyone, although my main concern today is the people needing a workout on the go, with little or no equipment. Even if you train in the gym each week completing these workouts as a bonus first thing in the morning, on the weekend, or on the beach will only enhance your athleticism, but also lower body fat and increase energy levels.

But let’s be honest, being able to move your own body weight is cool! From the Royal Marine style training, to batman doing his morning push ups!

This stuff rocks!!

You could also purchase some additional equipment you can use at home: A Kettle Bell (M-16kg, F-8/12kg), TRX, Medicine Ball, Chin Up Bar (door frame attachment), Ab roller? – You know you got one for christmas too….

Make your body your machine! Excuses end here:

HIIT 1:

Warm up with: 2 rounds
standing chops x10
Arm swings x10 forward, back and across chest
Spiderman lunges x10

Complete each exercise for 45 seconds, resting for 15 seconds between each exercise. Take a 60 second rest at the end of the circuit and repeat 3-5 times.

A1. Air Squats
A2. High Knees
A3. Crawl Outs with 2x Push Ups
A4. Alternate knee to elbow Mountain Climbers
A5. Push Up to Torso Twist
A6. Plank Hold

HIIT 2:

Warm up with: 2 rounds
Seal Jacks x20
Alternate Reverse Lunge with Knee drive x10 e.s.
Inch Worms 3 forward/3 backwards

Complete each exercise for 45 seconds, resting for 15 seconds between each exercise. Take a 60 second rest at the end of the circuit and repeat 3-5 times.

A1. Jump Lunges
A2. Push ups with alternate shoulder tap
A3. Half Burpees
A4. Bench Dips (off a chair perhaps)
A5. Leg Sliders (feet on towel or in socks using smooth floor area)
A6. Hand Walkouts

HIIT 3:

With a single Kettle Bell and a Skipping Rope. Male 12kg-20kg, Female 8kg-12kg

Warm up with: 2 rounds
Alternate knee stand ups x20
Spider man Lunges x20
Push up to plank x20

Complete each exercise for 15 reps, resting for 15 seconds between each exercise. Take a 60 second rest at the end of the circuit and repeat 3-5 times.

A1. Overhead KB Reverse Lunge x15
A2. Pike Push ups x15
A3. Single Arm Rack Squat (x10 reps, change arm, 10 reps)
A4. Single Arm Row x15 e.s.
A5. Kettle Bell Swing x15
A6. 100 skips

This just scratches the surface of what you can do. I hope it may of helped some of you. I will post some more advanced routines in the future but for now, go get HIIT!

Maybe you could try some of this next??

Play safe,

Coach Ashley is out!

Smart Fitness

Author Smart Fitness

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