Freestyle Diet – Intro, calories & macros

Posted: 4 August 2013 in 2013 Archive

Today’s post is simply regarding diet which is highly regarded as the key element in achieving your goals in the fitness industry.

Before I go on let me begin by saying that I’m no expert in nutrition or fitness and what I do is based on the many articles I’ve read, videos I’ve watched by industry experts and personal experiences based on  trial and errors. So although I am sharing with you my journey and I am willing to reply to any questions you may have, I strongly recommend seeking professional advice from industry experts if you really want to develop a better insight.

My current aim is to keep losing body fat over the coming weeks whilst maintain as much muscle size as I can. For those who have read my recent posts you will be aware that I have initiated a new style of dieting known as IIFYM, Freestyle or Flexible Diet. In a nutshell this diet sways away from the old boring rigid fitness diets very commonly associated to eating “clean” and around the clock (every 3 hours); and it favours a more rounded approach allowing one to eat whatever they like and with a less time rigid approach as long as it fits within the macros.

The absolute fundamental is to have a clear goal in mind, being it losing or gaining weight; work out the calories you require to achieve this and from that draw Macro Nutrients requirements. Macro Nutrients or Macros are what make up the calories in foods and the key ones to bear in mind are:

Protein – 1g = 4 calories

Carbs – 1g = 4 calories

Fat – 1g = 9 calories

For the purpose of this diet I will also be taking into account Fiber (many times regarded as Micro Nutrient) and to a certain level Alcohol (which are just empty calories).

There are a few complex as well as simple ways of calculating your maintenance calories. Based on a personal preference and experience I choose to use Layne Norton’s method (explained in: Whilst I calculate my calories through Layne’s method, I have use the following video to help me work out my macros by Team3DMJ: If you’d like me to expand or you are interested in finding more about this please feel free to drop me a message.

So I am currently sitting at an average weight of 79.4kg and I’ve already managed to drop around 2kg in 2 weeks since returning from holidays. This transformation was done with minimal cardio and only 4 gym sessions a week. My calories and macros for the past couple of weeks have been based on a weight of 82kg, which worked as:

Maintenance Calories = 15 x 180lbs = 2700 cals

Caloric Deficit Diet = 2700 – 500 = 2200 calories

Protein – 1.25g per pound of bodyweight: 220g – 230g

Fat – around 20% of total daily calories: 44g – 54g

Carbs – remaining calories: 210g – 220g

Fibre – Minimum 25g Maximum 20% of Carbs intake

My approach to this diet as you can see is laid back allowing for a range of grams for each macro. What I do attempt to ensure that I maintain the protein intake quite precise and then offload any differences between fats and carbs. My aim is to drop anywhere between 0.5% up to 1% of bodyweight per week hopefully allowing me to lose fat whilst maintaining muscle. My intention is to not go under the 2200 calories as I start finding myself lacking energy throughout the day if I lower my calories to that extreme. So something key to bear in mind when losing weight is that it’s all about the calories in versus the calories out. If I find that my average bodyweight for the week hasn’t gone down then I will increase my physical activity to offload this but more on this later.

I know it sounds like a long winded process having to track your calories and macros each day but I have recently started using a great website which also an app for smartphones called: MyFitnessPal. If you want to follow my diet closely you will be able to do so on the daily basis on:

So far over the past couple of weeks I have manage to already progress slightly despite still my little effort in the gym as I have been concentrating more on a rehab style of workouts. Below on the left side is the picture of me two weeks ago, when I returned from holidays, after my first workout whilst on the right is me last Thursday. Bear in mind that between one picture and the other I only actually did two cardio sessions and 8 weight lifting sessions.

2 Weeks Transformation

So returning back to the IIFYM diet and its flexible approach. Now don’t get me wrong, just because it means that I can eat Ice-creams, pizzas, cheese, crisps and many other “junk” foods I most definite do not encourage doing this! I think it’s key to keep a balanced diet which consist of eating healthy (so I still eat my veggies and fruits every day!) whilst still allowing myself to enjoy treats such as Pop-Tarts, Nutella and any other delicious foods.

So far my experience is the past two week with this diet has been absolutely great! In the past due to the rigidness of my diet I had to limit a lot of my social activities as well as I found myself wanting to binge eat quite often. Whilst with this new diet I feel that I have progressed in the gym, I haven’t had any urges to eat more calories than the daily required and it has allowed me to have a more active social life which has a definitely had a positive impact in my mood. I will keep you updated regarding any changes to my diet in the coming weeks and I will also post some picture to prove to you that I am really eating all these foods I claim to be eating; and with a bit of luck and a lot of determination I will hopefully show you a great progress over the coming weeks.

“Progress has little to do with speed, but much to do with direction.” Unknown

  1. run fatboy says:

    What is this obsession with Pop-Tarts! Hahaha keep up the good work my boyxxxxxxxx

  2. […] Flexible Diet or IIFFYM (if it fits your macros), to read that post you can find it here: Now my standpoint with regards to diet is that no one extreme of the diet is the right approach […]

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