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Thread: Macros? 40/40/20?

  1. #1
    ianb1 is offline New Member
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    Macros? 40/40/20?

    Hello everyone, first time poster/long time lurker (generic greeting i know, but HEY!)

    So I have gotten very interested in bodybuilding lately, been hitting the gym hard almost every day since Nov '15 (hella long time huh). Little bit of background to start. July '15 I weighed a mere 150 pounds, skin and bones (depression, mind altering substances, I will spare any more details.) Got my shit together, especially my eating. Come November I weighed in at 220lbs. Holy f*ck, right? Got fat quick. Anyways, after pretty clean eating (no processed foods) I am down to 177, and starting to lean out a bit. Reading on here often doing research I have come to realize that I need to eat more. I was probably only eating 1,000 cal/day (disregard macros, idk what they were anyways) and it helped me burn fat quick along with lots of cardio and some weight training.

    Lately, I have been feeling lethargic at the gym. Strength increased for sure, stamina down a lot, pretty much assumed the issue was lack of proper nutrition. So, basically here is my question..

    For more overall energy during my workouts, carbs are essential, right? I've always sort of looked at carbs negatively, like they will make people fat etc, but it seems that is not the case from reading on here. Would a 40% carb 40% protein 20% fat diet at about 2300 cal a day give me more energy while still allowing me to continue to cut? I've been burning fat (probably at the cost of not gaining as much muscle as i could potentially be gaining) by eating very low cal, low carb, but high protein.

    TLDR Just read the last chunk if the beginning is irrelevant.

    Thanks guys, feedback is much appreciated!

  2. #2
    almostgone's Avatar
    almostgone is online now AR-Platinum Elite- Hall of Famer
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    40/40/20 is a good basic place to start. You should calculate your TDEE to determine your caloric intake and work from there. As you gain muscle, you will need to increase calories to support that muscle. I know this is a very generic reply, but you have to start somewhere. Good luck.

    http://forums.steroid.com/diet-nutri...penditure.html
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    There are 3 loves in my life: my wife, my English mastiffs, and my weightlifting....Man, my wife gets really pissed when I get the 3 confused...
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    Back In Black's Avatar
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    No way of knowing if you can cut on 2300cals until you try it but if you were only eating 1000cals for any length of time it's probable it will be way too much. Only way to find out is to eat at that level for 2 weeks and see what happens to your weight/body composition. Initially the increase in cals (carbs) will make you heavier because they will enable you to hold more water in the muscles. So, eat at 2300 cals for 3 days then weigh yourself and then again 10days later.

    In terms of macro split, as AG says, 40/40/20 is a pretty good base point. I'm pretty good with carbs, I eat a lot, as long as I keep an eye on my fats. My plan is

    Protein 1.5g per lean lb of body weight

    Fats 0.3-0.4g per lean lb of body weight

    Carbs make up the remainder depending on how many cals I eat.

    Carbs are not the enemy but if you combine high carbs and high fat then most people are practically begging to get fat.
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  4. #4
    ianb1 is offline New Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by almostgone View Post
    40/40/20 is a good basic place to start. You should calculate your TDEE to determine your caloric intake and work from there. As you gain muscle, you will need to increase calories to support that muscle. I know this is a very generic reply, but you have to start somewhere. Good luck.
    Thanks for the reply,

    I've been playing around with iifym and it says my TDEE is 3147 cal /day at my estimated 20% body fat. Ordered a caliper so that I can get a more accurate measurement of bf% though so I won't just be guessing.

    With that being said, a 500 cal deficit should allow me to continue losing weight, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Back In Black View Post
    No way of knowing if you can cut on 2300cals until you try it but if you were only eating 1000cals for any length of time it's probable it will be way too much. Only way to find out is to eat at that level for 2 weeks and see what happens to your weight/body composition. Initially the increase in cals (carbs) will make you heavier because they will enable you to hold more water in the muscles. So, eat at 2300 cals for 3 days then weigh yourself and then again 10days later.

    In terms of macro split, as AG says, 40/40/20 is a pretty good base point. I'm pretty good with carbs, I eat a lot, as long as I keep an eye on my fats. My plan is

    Protein 1.5g per lean lb of body weight

    Fats 0.3-0.4g per lean lb of body weight

    Carbs make up the remainder depending on how many cals I eat.

    Carbs are not the enemy but if you combine high carbs and high fat then most people are practically begging to get fat.
    Then it must have been all the rice pilaf soaked in butter I used to eat every day that got me fat so quick hahaha.
    Yesterday, I logged all of my food on MyFitnessPal and ended up consuming too much protein I guess. Ended the day with 49% protein, 25% carbs, and 25% fats. but only ate 2,088 calories. So will keep tweaking diet until I can get it right, looks like I need more steamed rice in the equation lol.

    Thanks for the responses guys, much appreciated.

  5. #5
    almostgone's Avatar
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    A 500 calorie deficit is a good target. You will likely have to make small adjustments in your calories as your diet progresses, but congrats on getting a plan started.
    There are 3 loves in my life: my wife, my English mastiffs, and my weightlifting....Man, my wife gets really pissed when I get the 3 confused...
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    ianb1 is offline New Member
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    Felt a lot better in the gym today compared to the way I have been feeling the past few weeks. Good nutrition does actually make a much more noticeable difference than I gave it credit for previously lol, unless it was just placebo.. pretty sure it was the food though. Managed to hit 600 cal deficit today and macros were only a hair off, 39/41/20. FEEL PRETTY GOOD ABOUT MYSELF RIGHT NOW. LOL
    Last edited by ianb1; 04-17-2016 at 01:23 AM.
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  7. #7
    almostgone's Avatar
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    That's great! You'll find that as your lifts progress and your body composition changes, you will have to make small tweaks here and there in your calories, and occasionally your macros. Keep an eye on the scales of course, but remember that the mirror can be a valuable asset as well.
    Keeping a food log of exactly what you eat and how much you eat will be a huge asset, almost a necessity, and will make dietary adjustments much easier.
    There are 3 loves in my life: my wife, my English mastiffs, and my weightlifting....Man, my wife gets really pissed when I get the 3 confused...
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    I told myself that as soon as this question came up I would answer the same thing.

    1. Check you maintenance calories using this site, forget the others, https://www.supertracker.usda.gov/bwp/
    2. Eat at maintenance until you see it is the correct one.
    3. When stalling cut calories with 100kcal/wk until you stall again.

    I think Back in Black has this spot on. Eat enough Protein, the amount of fat he recommended and then rest carbs. Sometimes that is 40/40/20 sometimes it is way off which is why I am against the % calculations.

    Thanks
    ~t

  9. #9
    ianb1 is offline New Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by tarmyg View Post
    I told myself that as soon as this question came up I would answer the same thing.

    1. Check you maintenance calories using this site, forget the others, https://www.supertracker.usda.gov/bwp/
    2. Eat at maintenance until you see it is the correct one.
    3. When stalling cut calories with 100kcal/wk until you stall again.

    I think Back in Black has this spot on. Eat enough Protein, the amount of fat he recommended and then rest carbs. Sometimes that is 40/40/20 sometimes it is way off which is why I am against the % calculations.

    Thanks
    ~t
    Alright, I will make some adjustments and see how it goes. Just to be clear, when you say stalling, you mean that weight loss has come to a halt, correct? When that is the case, just drop 100 kcal per day for a week?

    Nutrition such a pain in the ass, but I suppose it is the only true way to see desirable results.

  10. #10
    tarmyg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ianb1 View Post
    Just to be clear, when you say stalling, you mean that weight loss has come to a halt, correct? When that is the case, just drop 100 kcal per day for a week?
    Yes, results will be slower but it will be MUCH easier to maintain what you have achieved later on.

  11. #11
    mockery's Avatar
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    if you're over 40 in age, and based on your job , moderate carbs may not be good for you and looking at higher fats with lower carb options may be a better option. Many older guys don't handle carbs the same way younger guys do.

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