106 Comments

  1. Miriam Lopez

    Simply amazing! I’m learning by myself reading some blogs/forums like this and I can say that there is a lot of complete information! Thank you!

  2. Maria Alvarado

    Hello! I’m new to this community, and I find everyone’s Q&A’s very helpful, Thank you!

    My question is (and please excuse me if this is a dumb question) I want to loss fat but gain lean muscle. I workout Mon-Fri for an hour 5-6AM. Some days it’s weights and cardio, others it’s just cardio….and most evenings I don’t get a chance to work out. Which of the Macro counts would benefit me more? Building Muscle/Boosting Metabolism or Lossing Fat?

    Thank you!
    Maria A.

    1. Devin Olsen

      Hi Maria, that’s a good question! If your primary goal is to burn fat, you would probably be best served by following the fat loss macro protocol, at least at first. Keep in mind that the breakdown provided is just an example meant to show the approximate percentage calories that should come from fat, protein, and carbs when trying to burn fat. 🙂 If you’re looking for more specific meal plans, you might be interested in checking out one of the IdealFit free 15 day challenges!

  3. Kim J.

    Ironically I feel like my problem is getting enough fats into my diet so I’ve been at a plateau and having issues gaining muscle. Mostly because of my allergy to all seafood, nuts, and avocados. Anyone have any suggestions?

  4. Robbie

    I’ve been all over the place with my weight control./balance
    Now I’m very interested in learning about how to calculate macros for my son. Who was just recently diagnosed with type 1 diabetes …
    Everything effects the blood sugar in our bodies .. they tell us less carbs because of high content of sugars , but at the same time explain thatvkids need carbs to grow
    I need the right balance for myself and my kids…
    any suggestion would be greatly appreciated !
    Thank you

    1. Devin Olsen

      That’s a great question Robbie-Counting macros and tracking the food you eat can certainly be a major benefit in taking control of one’s health! However, we definitely suggest speaking to a healthcare professional regarding macro calculations for those with any sort of medical condition 🙂

  5. Sarah

    Lindsey’s macro e-book is so simple to understand what food I should be eating. It has really helped me and my friends see some progress with our weightloss!

    Thanks guys!

    1. Devin Olsen

      Good question Laurie! Essentially, yes-if you aren’t working out, and are trying to lose weight, then your macros would be less!

  6. Laurie

    For fat loss if you don’t work out would your macros be less? I’m surprised looking at your numbers as I recently had mine done and my carbs and fat are higher than yours.

  7. Carla

    I work out later in the day- 7 pm to be exact. This is where I am having a hard time with my eating. I have lunch at 12:30, a fourth meal at 3:00 (which is usually a shake with yogurt and berries) work out at 7 and then hardly ever make it to meals 5 and 6. I need some ideas on how to make it through all this eating with a 7 pm gym time… Thoughts?

    1. Christine Sanelli

      Could you fit a meal in around 5:00 and then another one after your workout?

  8. Stefania

    In the examples above I was wondering about the rice cakes and protein powder and peanut butter is this created to make a smoothie? And would almond milk added to this work fine?

    1. Christine Sanelli

      Hey Stefania! Sorry for the confusion! So the peanut butter goes on top of the rice cakes and then you have a protein shake with it. Also, adding almond milk is totally fine!

    1. Christine Sanelli

      Not necessarily but you should always monitor your sugar intake!

  9. Trisha

    You wrote “It’s common for women to be deficient in protein.” According to what source? Every age group and every sex in the US meets protein requirements. I’m confused…

  10. Oakley S

    So if one of my main meals is a grilled chicken salad, I shouldn’t count the veggies I put into it? I’ve plugged in, for example, my romaine lettuce into MyFitnessPal as well as the cucumber and tomato. In order for me to hit my macros this salad was huge, as are all of my other meals for the day. I’m not used to eating this much. If I don’t punch those into the app, I won’t hit my macros, therefore I should be adding more food. Is this correct?

    1. Alyson McDonald

      Oakley, you can most definitely count the veggies in your salad into your macros.

  11. Dawn curley

    I have been on atkins for the past year eating between 20 and 30 carbs a day I am afraid of eating the meal plan for fat loss with all the carbs I’m afraid of gaining weight HELP lol

  12. Tessa

    I just started counting my macros, but my calculated daily carb intake based on my exercise level, body comp, and goal to build muscle/increase metabolism is around 240g (960 calories). I’ve found eating enough carbs in the day to fit my macros to be very difficult, as I get so full and of course most veggies barely count for my macros. I feel like I’m eating too much, even though I’m hitting my carb macros and eating healthy complex carbs like sweet potato, oats, brown rice, sprouted grain bread, etc.

    Is this normal? Should I keep eating at this level? Will I ever not feel like I’m eating too much?

    Thank you!

    1. McKenzie Pinckney

      It seems crazy, but in order to optimize your metabolism you need to be eating a lot. If your body isn’t used to getting that many calories each day, it will for sure seem like too much, but your body just needs to adapt to eating every 2-3 hours. If you’re consistent, you’ll find down the road you’ll be hungry every few hours, because your body will start requiring all that food. Does that make sense?

  13. Bobbi

    I use MyFitnessPal but I’m not sure what I need to plug in I’m 5’2 and weight 109 but I want to tone up so do I put maintain cause that gives me 1800 calories a day and 50 carbs 25 fat and protein to me this doesn’t seem right

    1. McKenzie Pinckney

      1800 calories would be just a tad too high for you. Without knowing your body fat percentage, ultimate weight loss goals, metabolic functioning, etc., a standard caloric amount for you would be about 1200-1400 calories. The macros do seem low. Typically, the average person needs about 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight to gain lean muscle mass and lose fat (tone). That amount decreases as fat percentage increases. Fat and carbs should be lower for best results. If you need more clarity of macro breakdown, you should look at Lindsey’s Macro eBook. It will teach you what you need to know 🙂 You can purchase it here http://www.idealfit.com/books/trainer-lindsey-s-ultimate-guide-to-macros-ebook/11396896.html

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Sorry about that Geri. You could try My Macros+ or find another one that works for you. But Trainer Lindsey also has a new eBook talking all about Macros. How to track them, calculations for counting yours, case studies, how to track when you are on vacation, etc. It is super helpful! Here is the link: http://www.idealfit.com/ultimate-guide-to-macros.list

    2. Kimb

      Go to the playstore…its in there. I have been using it on my android for 2 years now. It’s a wonderful app.

  14. roman j carpenter

    so i down loaded the fit app put in the meals i have ate today and the exercise and it what confused me is it added the calories burned to caloric intake allowed why? my goal calories are 1740 so far i have burned 650 calories food consumed is 905 its saying i have 1485 left ???

  15. Jenn

    Hi I am trying to figure out what my macros should be set at. I’m 37, 5’3 and weigh 141. I want to lose about 20 more lbs

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Hi Jenn, actually quite a bit of work can go into finding out what exactly your macros should be set at- there is quite a bit of trial and error. But a great starting point would be to try Trainer Lindsey’s 15 Day Fit Body Challenge. She has the macros set for weight loss depending on your weight and has great workouts as well. From there you may have a good idea of how much you should be eating a day. Then you can also plug in the meals to My Fitness Pal to see what they look like. http://www.idealfit.com/15-day-fit-body-challenge.list?widget_id=359563

  16. kathy

    I had my macros figured out for me and the numbers are a lot lower than what Lindsey’s 6 week challenge plan has us following. When I enter Lindsey’s plan into MyFitnessPal the numbers are so far off the chart. At this point I am so confused as to what my macro’s should be for someone who is 60yo, 130# and wants to lose about 10#. Confused, a little frustrated, but really want to stick to Lindsey’s plan.

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Hey Kathy, I totally get that that can be frustrating! But Lindsey has designed the 6 Week Fit Body Challenge for weight loss and to help you get more toned and lean. Our contestants have seen some amazing results following the challenge! Lindsey totally knows what she is doing, so if you totally stick to the plan I am sure that you can see some great results too!

  17. Stephanie Quijano

    Hello! I have a very important question regarding carbs! I would like to gain muscle/lose fat, so would I eat more carbs, or less?!?! I’m 108 lbs and have been recommended to have 133/133/30 g of protein, carbs and fats. Because I’m petite, I haven’t really noticed much change. Do I need to decrease or increase my carb amount?! Thanks in advance!

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Hi Stephanie! So it’s different for everyone, but you should start slowly increasing your carbs and fats until you hit a point where you start noticing better fulness when you are lifting and when your weight is slowly going up.

  18. Leslie Carraghan

    Your program sounds very doable. I would like more info about the exercise portion. I’m a 56 year old woman. I have had 5 back surgeries , a maniscus repair. With my last back surgery I also developed femoral palsy. Needless to say I’ve been through quite a bit. However, I am doing well. I can do a pretty steady power walk and have also done Pilates on a reformer machine. I can get to the floor for exercise but don’t like to. It’s hard to get back up. I do have access to a gym but don’t usually go because I’m not a gym person. Would love to hear from you.
    Thanks

  19. Maria elena garcia

    Hello, I’m a little lost,I been losing weight in my own, a little help from her, there, I started developing uric acid, I’m in supplements ring now to fix it, I’m feeling so much better eating healthy and of course losing weight, but I’ve noticed I’m losing muscle too, so I need a little help, Im trying to avoid dairy, sugar, flours, can you pls suggest a plan for me ?

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      If you are losing muscle there is a good change that you aren’t getting enough protein into your diet. For an active woman you should be trying to get .9-1 g of protein per pound of body weight. We definitely recommend taking IdealLean Protein to help hold on to your muscle and lose fat. If you are wanting a meal plan set up for you, you should try one of our 15 Day Challenges. They are free and they provide workouts and meal plans that are targeted at helping you lose fat, and get lean and toned. Check them out here to see which one most interests you: http://www.idealfit.com/idealfit-challenges.list

  20. Tammy

    I have done the 15 day challenge twice .. I Loved it!! I did lose 6 lbs but I can’t sustain it. I get bored with the same meals and workouts after a while.. I am looking for more diet choices… What is the meal plan like for the 6 week challenge? And are the workouts all new or a repeat of the 15 day?
    Thanks so much!!

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Hi Tammy! I am so glad you loved it! There are definitely more meals with the six weeks, and you get a lot of substitutions to choose from, so you don’t have to eat the same thing all the time. The workouts are also different as there are 36 of them! This challenge goes into a lot more depth and you are given more options that the 15 day. 🙂 Hope this helps!

  21. Cassie

    Hi! I’ just starting to delve into exercise nutrition and personal training, and I see so many discrepancies from competitors and nutritionists online (even discrepancies between NASM recommendations and my nutrition textbook) about recommended protein intake. I was wondering what formulas you use for you for recommended protein intake? Online info seems to take in an incredibly high amount of protein, and I’m trying to wrap my mind around having so many credible people say one thing, but be reading something different in the textbooks. (For example, from what I understand, despite the ranges being slightly different – consuming between 1.2-1.8 g/ kg/day is the recommended intake for bodybuilders, but in some cases, up to but not exceeding 2g/kg/day.) I know its based on weight, but even a 200lb woman trying to build muscle, would end up calculating intake at around 108g of protein. But I also know there is so much that I don’t know!! Curious to hear your input.

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Hi Cassie. Good question. So for an active woman we recommend getting .9-1g of protein per pound of body weight. So the formula we use is just bodyweight x .9-1.

    2. Caitlin Peterson

      Hi Cassie, for active women we recommend getting between .9-1 g of protein per pound a day.

  22. Carol

    By eating a Whole Foods/Plant Based diet you will get the perfect ratio of Macros without counting anything. Just eat. No expensive powders or supplements, no inflammation promoting animal products. The science is here to support eating Grains, Greens, Beans, Fruits, and Veggies. That’s all we need.

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      That’s great that works for you! Sometimes it can be hard to get all the protein you need in a vegetarian diet, and that is one of the reasons we have IdealLean Protein.

  23. CJ

    What is the difference between this shake and shakeology from Beach Body?

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Shakeology is a meal replacement shake, so it contains a little protein, fat, and calories, so that you can use it to replace a meal. While IdealLean Protein is just a protein shake not a real replacement shake on its own, with 0 fat and cabs, and 20 grams of protein.

  24. J.

    Meal 1 on fat loss.
    3T cream of rice with ideal protein….I assume you don’t eat that dry? What do you mix with?

  25. Karen

    On your example food diary you have 1 scoop of protein powder included in your snacks. Do you drink it as a shake or for you mix the powder into something (ex. peanut butter)

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Good question Karen. For this example, Lindsey is drinking it as a shake. Because it is 0 carbs and fat, she is just drinking it with water here.

  26. Sandra

    Specifically, what equipment is needed to do the workouts? Can all workouts be done at home?

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Hi Sandra, for Trainer Lindsey’s 6 Week Fit Body Challenge you only need a stability ball and dumbbells. So it can very easily be done at home as long as you have those things!

  27. Maggie

    I had gastric bypass surgery I lost 85 pounds and want to loose 15 more but I stopped loosing will this work fo me? And I want to tone what do u recommend

    1. Caitlin Peterson

      Hey, congrats on your awesome weight loss! I recommend taking the 15 Day Challenge. It is a great way to learn more about fitness nutrition, and comes with a free meal plan and workout plan. Here is the link to sign up: https:// idealfit-thg.eu-west-1.elasticbeanstalk.com/15-day-fit-body-challenge/

  28. Brandi

    I’m 40, have been doing both cardio and strength workouts for over a year but don’t know if my macros should be for fat loss or building muscle. I want to be more toned but I’m not necessarily trying to lose weight. I do have trouble areas of fat though. So fat loss or mucsle/boost metabolism? Can you advise as to which route I should go with my macros counting?

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      If you’re trying to get toned but don’t want to lose weight, I would balance your macros on the protein heavy side but make sure your calories are set for weight maintenance. I would even recommend joining the 15 Day Fit Body Challenge to help you learn the right balance of macros for you. It’s a really great challenge for burning fat and toning up. Here’s a link to sign up: https:// idealfit-thg.eu-west-1.elasticbeanstalk.com/15-day-fit-body-challenge/

  29. Tia

    What does it *really* taste like? And is there a texture? I have had some products like this that felt sticky almost.

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      The protein is really tasty! My favorite flavors are the cake batter and piña colada, but they’re all really tasty. I like that it’s a really smooth and creamy texture. If you want to try it before you commit to a whole tub, you can go here to buy sample packs: https:// idealfit-thg.eu-west-1.elasticbeanstalk.com/product/3-ideallean-protein-packs-bottle-protein-recipe-ebook-bundle-free-shipping/

  30. Lyndsey

    Is this something that I can do while pregnant? And what would be some good numbers to start out with if so?

  31. Kerry

    When you say 1 scoop of protein powder..what do you mix that with?

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      If the macros are 20g protein and zero sugar, fats, and carbs then it’s only mixed with water.

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      The macro ratios for Trainer Lindsey’s 6 Week Challenge are a little different for each weight group and can vary between meal plans. So there isn’t one set in stone ratio that she uses every time

  32. Vikki

    Reading over her sample meals & Lindsey eats things I don’t. Peanut butter I am sure I can replace with Almond butter. The whey protein under ingredients has sugar (sucralose) & program also seems to have a lot of rice products. I am 51 & want to loose 15-20 pounds AND tone & define my body. So not sure which route to take or what to replace all those rice products with. I don’t eat white rice

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      Well Trainer Lindsey’s 6 Week Fit Body Challenge comes with a ton of easy substitutions so that you can really tailor your meal plan to fit your needs. There are a lot of alternatives to rice and other protein options too! It’s very customizable 🙂 Here’s a link to learn more: https://trainerlindsey.com/

      1. Janice

        Kirsten, My questions are similar. I am also 51 and have been at same weight for a while even though I am eating healthier, but want to lose about 30-40 lbs. I wondered why there would be sucralose (sugar) in the Ideal shake. Is there another protein/whey product that could be recommended? And white rice has been said to be not good for us and wild/brown rice is better isn’t it?

        1. Caitlin Peterson

          Hey Janice, check out this post to see why we use Sucralose in our products: http://www.idealshape.com/blog/sweeteners-good-or-bad/. And that is a common misconception about white rice. We shouldn’t be eating white rice alone, but it is a great option to eat along with your protein. The protein will neutralize the effects of the white rice and won’t raise blood sugar levels. In fact, Lindsey eats white rice almost every day!

  33. Sheila

    I have done 4 rounds of the 15 day challenge and 2 rounds of the 6 week challenge. In still trying to lose some stubborn fat in my mid section, booty and thighs. Not sure what my macros should be at this point. What would you advise?

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      Lindsey designed the 6 Week Challenge to really maximize your fat burn. She’s really already done all the hard work for you so that you don’t have to go through and calculate your macros and develop your own meal plan. If you feel like you’ve hit a plateau, message Lindsey or comment on the 6 Week Challenge Private FB page to see what you should do to hit your goals.

  34. Lisa

    So how do you decide which set of macros to hit….I have at least 50 pounds to lose to get to my goal weight, but don’t want to hit that weight and still be “fluffy”. So do I go for muscle/metabolism or fat loss? I was about to start the 12 week challenge but I’m wondering if the 6 week might be a better fit to get the healthy eating/macros in line…suggestions?

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      With your goals in mind, I could easily see you going either way. If you’re excited about the 6 Week Challenge do that! If you’re not used to exercising I would start out with the 12 Week Challenge.

  35. Carrie

    My 15 day fit challenge starts on the 18th of July. I never received any email as to what to do next so I went back in and now I received another email and my start date changed. What do I need to do now

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      I’ll send you an email with the links to your meal plan and workouts so you can start whenever you want. You can start today or tomorrow but you won’t start getting your challenge emails until later this week. Sorry about that glitch, I’ll have our web team take a look at that.

  36. Terri Newkirk

    I am having ankle surgery on Friday. I will not be able to work out for at least 10 weeks. I am used to working about 5-6 days a week. I am so afraid of gaining weight and losing all my muscle. What would you recommend?

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      If you want to maintain during your recovery time, it’s best to keep your protein high and even incorporate BCAAs. That will help to prevent muscle loss. Listen to what your body needs. If your weight starts creeping up, cut back on calories a little. Maintenance takes a little bit of trial and error. Livestrong.com has a calculator that can help you figure out roughly how many calories you need to maintain. Go from there and see what works.

  37. Tanya

    I have been on a low carb diet for along time, After my second child gained a lot of weight. Started crossfit and now I am about 40 pounds overweight. I am afraid of carbs I think I will gain more weight. What should my macros be?

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      If you’re new (or newer) to fitness nutrition and being strict with food/macros, I recommend joining Trainer Lindsey’s 15 Day Fit Body Challenge. That’s a really great place to start. It will help you get a better idea about your food without having to do all the work of creating a meal plan. Jumping into macros for the first time can get overwhelming, I know, I tried it! It was a lot easier to create meal plans and have a good feel for things after I did Lindsey’s Challenge. Here’s a link to sign up: https:// idealfit-thg.eu-west-1.elasticbeanstalk.com/15-day-fit-body-challenge/

    2. Whitney

      I just lost 45+ pounds doing a ketogenic diet. It has worked wonders for my husband and myself and we are both healthier overall. It’s high fat and extremely low carb. I always laugh when I see the low fat meal plans because they always left me hungry. I joke that bacon is the reason I was able to lose weight but eating high fat kept me from overeating. Now I work out about every other day and have way more energy than when I was eating all those carbs.

      1. Kirsten Jackson

        That’s awesome that you found what worked for you, Whitney!

      2. Karli

        I’m on the same type of meal plan and saw more results in a week than I did in 9 months of low fat diet. When you have high fat and low carb, your body is forced to use your fat for energy, which actually provides higher and more sustainable energy, and has the side effect of getting rid of body fat. 🙂

      3. Hannah

        Whitney, I know what you mean about fats being more satiating. Ever since I turned 32 I’ve craved fats more than carbs, so changed my diet around to reflect that. It seems a higher fat, vaguely Mediterranean diet works best for my depression, GI issues, weight loss, hair growth and skin problems. I’ve lost 20 pounds and returned to my high school weight! I’m friggin amazed! Still have anxiety from time to time, though – it’s hell being a single adult. Nothing a good dose of magnesium can’t cure!

  38. Rachel

    How do I figure out how much of the macos I need daily baaed on my goal?

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      Free veggies are vegetables that you can eat an unlimited amount of because they are low-calorie. They’re free because won’t affect your macros or meal plan enough to derail you. Leafy greens, cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, mushrooms, these are all free veggies. Starchy vegetables like potatoes, corn, peas, etc. aren’t considered free because they have too many carbs. This post has a list of some more examples of free veggies: https:// idealfit-thg.eu-west-1.elasticbeanstalk.com/healthy-grocery-list/

  39. judy

    Do you have any protein that is whey free. I get very gassy with whey

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      For most people it’s usually the lactose in their whey protein that makes them gassy. Our whey protein is actually whey protein isolate and it’s lactose free.

    2. Angela

      @Judy, I thought whey made me gassy, too, but for some reason the IdealFit protein is free from any ill symptoms. I’d suggest you order 2-4 packages from the IdealFit site to give it a try. Also, there is a money back guarantee if you purchase a protein you can’t ingest. Hope that helps!

    3. Danielle

      Try vega sport comes in chocolate, vanilla and mocha I think berry flavor too it’s amazing 30 grams of protein low carb low sugar too…

    1. Kirsten Jackson

      Herbalife is a meal replacement shake IdealLean Protein is just a protein shake. It doesn’t have any carbs, fat, or sugar. It’s only 80 calories and has 20g of protein. It’s meant to help you supplement your diet so you can get more protein. It’s not really meant to replace a full meal on it’s own.

    2. Heather

      It has about the same calories but hers has 0 carbs sugar and fat so herbalife is no where near her macros bc it has carbs and sugar

  40. Jane Tagliabue

    I’m going to try and start counting macros…
    Can you suggest a meal plan for vegetarians? I’m 57 female and workout a few days a week.
    Thank you,
    Jane Tagliabue

    1. Barb

      If I wanted to maintain weight what should my total macros for carbs, fat and protein be at and if I wanted to loose weight what should my total macros for carbs, fat and protein be at?

      1. McKenzie Pinckney

        Hi Barb! So, this is a complicated question to answer, because your weight, age, goals, current fitness level, diet, etc. will determine your macros. Now, the best way to better understand macro breakdown would be some personal research. I would read Lindsey’s Ultimate Guide to Macros, which can be found here https://www.idealfit.com/books/trainer-lindsey-s-ultimate-guide-to-macros-ebook/11396896.html
        She will help you understand how to break them down for yourself. You can also join either one of Lindsey’s 6 Week Challenges, where she actually already does the work for you! https://www.idealfit.com/idealfit-challenges.list

        1. Barb

          Thanks. Age is 60, weight 132, goal weight 125, fitness level very active, diet balanced healthy.
          Macros 40% carbs, 30% protein,30%fat 1350 calories a day.
          What else do you need to know?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *