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Duration: 8 Weeks, Starting 01/09/2017
Before you begin – You will need the following:
- Take before pictures
- Take initial body measurements (see below for details on where/how)
- Record initial weight
- Food scale (highly recommended to accurately weigh/measure, eyeballing isn’t really accurate)
- Download MyFitnessPal app and create an account
- Complete and submit registration form via e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
During the challenge you will need to complete:
- Daily logging in MyFitnessPal of EVERYTHING (food and drink) that you consume. The information below will explain your daily “macro” allowances.
- Interact (comment, like, ask questions, etc) with other member and coaches in our private FB Group “RX the Scale”
- Perform weekly weigh-ins and report your +/- from the previous week along with daily macro +/- targets using provided spreadsheet. E-mail weekly to: email@example.com.
After the challenge ends:
- Take final body measurements
- Take after pictures
- Record final weigh in and submit via e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Determine if you are a winner!
So – What are macros and what does this all mean?
The term “macros” is short for macronutrients. There are three primary macronutrients that provide us with energy. These are:
– Protein (4 calories per gram)
– Fat (9 calories per gram)
– Carbohydrates (4 calories per gram)
There is technically a 4th, alcohol, but we won’t focus on that one specifically. However, just know if you drink alcohol, each gram of alcohol has 7 calories and they do count (more so as empty calories). Your body will use alcohol as the primary source of fuel, putting body fat burning on hold until all of the alcohol has been metabolized and it won’t help you build muscle. It’s not that you can’t have it, but with everything you need to count/track it and be careful not to overindulge as it can/will stall your progress.
Determine Your Daily “Macros” Goal – OUR JOB
When setting up a macro goal, it’s typically to accomplish one of 2 things:
Lose weight or Gain Weight (muscle)
The science behind your numbers:
BMR is the Basal Metabolic Rate. BMR is the amount of energy your body needs to survive each day. This energy is needed for breathing, your heart beating, nails growing, digestion, etc. It’s basically the energy your body needs to function if you were to just lie around all day.
From there, we need to understand what your current activity level is. Do you work out every day or maybe just a couple times a week, or not at all?
Understanding this, on top of your BMR will help us calculate what your daily macro goal should be. Everyone is different and everyone will have their own customized target macros provided by SWARM coaches based on what your end goal is.
Keeping track – YOUR JOB
This is where the challenge truly begins and requires your full accountability. You will need to take your daily macro goals (provided by SWARM coaches) and enter them as targets into the MyFitnessPal app. We can assist you with doing this if needed.
From here, it’s up to you to track what you eat and drink – every meal, every snack, every day.
This may sound tedious, but after a few times will quickly become second nature. You will notice there is a lot of planning and prepping that will also take some time in the beginning, but will also get easier as you go along.
As we mentioned in the requirements, a food scale is an essential tool. You may do a good job at estimating portion size, but without a scale, you can’t truly be 100% accurate with what you are putting in your body.
MyFitnessPal has a huge database of foods and also provides an overview on how your progress is going the day and if you are on the right track. We recommend you use the barcode scanning feature and scan the barcode on the package of the food you are eating to ensure the macronutrient information is accurate. You can also manually input the information to ensure accuracy as well.
We can always provide guidance and support on the use of the MyFitnessPal app and what to look for, how to view nutritional graphs as well as how to view your macro intake during the day.
It’s another essential item to help you understand your food intake as you go throughout the day and help you stay on target. It also gives you an idea if you are going over or perhaps under so you can plan out your food for the rest of the day.
REMEMBER – At the end of every week you must email the provided spreadsheet that tracks how close you stayed to your daily macro target for the week as this is used in our scoring method when determining winners of the challenge.
This is very important to define right from the beginning. How are you going to measure your progress? If you want to lose weight, the scale is a logical option, but should not be the only way to measure your success. The scale can give conflicting results as well.
For example, if you are also doing weight training, you will gain muscle mass, which results in more bodyweight.
To make sure you can truly see results, we recommend the following:
– Take before & after pictures. Take them preferably at the same location, at the same time (heck, even wear the same clothes) to really see the difference.
– Take body measurements. Muscle tissue may weigh more than fat tissue per square cm, but takes up less space.
So get out a measuring tape and measure up. The areas to measure:
Waist: Place the measuring tape about 1 cm above your belly button (at the narrowest part of your waist) to measure around your body. Exhale and measure before you inhale.
Hips: Place the measuring tape across the widest part of your hips/buttocks and measure all the way around while keeping the tape parallel to the floor.
Chest: Place the measuring tape just under your breasts/pecs and measure around the torso while keeping the tape parallel to the floor.
Thigh: Measure around the largest part of the thigh. Measure and record both legs
Upper arm: Measure around the largest part of each arm, above the elbow. Measure the same portion of the arm every time.
After 8 weeks of “Rx’ing The Scale”
The main point of doing a Macro based diet is to consistently hit your Macros. So we are going to be calculating how well you did by how close you were to your numbers everyday.