Wellness Wednesday: 1 Year of Macro Tracking

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1 year ago today, I started tracking macros in attempt to get myself into some healthy habits. Through college and for a little bit after, I was known for having a pretty terrible diet. During the last few months of 2018, I tried to make some real effort in getting away from eating a lot of dairy and get more whole foods into my diet.  Which you can read all about in this post. If you followed along with this journey last year, that post led to connecting with nutrition coach Noor. Who has since become the manager of a Barry's studio!! Anyway, my big goal for 2019 was to break my addiction to sugar and learn how to properly fuel my workouts. I worked with Noor for 3 months and documented it along the way (see this first post, the middle post, and the wrap up post). The first post really breaks down the whole process. But to summarize: her method of coaching involved tracking macros, which you might already know tracks your intake of protein, carbohydrates, and fats. 

As a starting point, she had me track the food I was already eating to get an idea of where to go from there. We set my macro targets for high protein, high carb, and low fat. I would enter my food intake into the MyFitnessPal app and report them in a spreadsheet for a weekly checkin where she could give me feedback, I could ask questions, and she would modify my targets based on factors like my workout schedule or my progress from the last week. As I mentioned in my last post on the topic (which was back in April), it was a great method for me! So I thought I would share how I have kept up with it since then. Especially since my hip injury got in the way of workouts for a good chunk of the year (if you're new here, I tore the labrum in my left hip last March). But as I also mentioned in those posts several times, everyone is different and what worked for me might not also be right for you. Which is also why I don't share my macro target numbers, measurements, weight, etc. Although those numbers were all part of the process, this is not meant to be a guide to follow. I'm simply sharing the positive experience I was thankful to have.

It sort of can all be summed up with I still keep up with it, but in a relaxed way. When I was reporting my progress to my nutrition coach each week, I was always planning out everything I was going to eat, and it was a little intimidating. But as I mentioned at the end of my time with her last year, it was just the push I needed to reach several big goals. The main one being learning to stop eating sugar all the time. I was also aiming to get more into eating whole foods, properly fuel my workouts, build muscle, and maintain my weight. One of the most important things I learned was how much food I really needed to be eating each day. I stayed pretty strong with it until late May, when I realized I would be out of workouts for awhile with my injury. So I sort of modified my targets by lowering the protein intake, since I wasn't doing much of anything with a torn hip labrum besides PT exercises. I also sort of relaxed the fat target and allowed myself a little bit more, since my targets were a little limiting in that aspect. But the fats I was adding were healthy fats like more avocados and peanut butter, and protein bars with some higher fat content. Since the other 2 counts were modified, I kept carbs at the same number, somedays higher if protein was very low. 

Although after my marathon of travel in the fall, I no longer track on the weekends. And I didn't track much during the holidays at all while I was out of my routine. I would look at the numbers for those days thinking I wasn't making great choices, but was also thinking it was the weekend and that shouldn't count as much anyway. So I just stopped tracking them altogether since I was already discounting the macro numbers from those days. Basically, I keep up with it now on the weekdays to make sure I am getting enough of the right foods. Although I have not made it fully back to my pre-injury workout schedule, I have gone back to a higher protein count since I have been able to work out a few days a week again. There is so much more detail in my posts during the process (linking again: first postmiddle postwrap up post) but a year later, I am still SO happy I tried this process out and stand by all that I previously said about it being the right method for me. Overall, I feel so much better compared to when I wasn't eating right. I feel less tired, more focused, and stronger in workouts. My skin has also never looked better, and there is usually a correlation between eating badly and a breakout popping up. My hair and nails are noticeably healthier as well. I'm just so happy to share a year later that this nutrition plan has been sustainable, and helped me form habits that have brought some great positive changes into my life!

Thanks for reading!

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