How to use the My Fitness Pal App For Great Results
After consistently using this app for a few days I can say, without reservation, that this is the best program I have seen for tracking your nutrition.
For instance, last night Kim made a crock pot recipe (it was very good and you can find it at eatingwell.com) and I was trying to figure out how to put it in the program. I really didn’t want to have to input all ingredients. So I searched for the actual recipe and I found it from the site and the exact name. How cool is that? You can create your frequently eaten meals and even your own recipes to put in your system.
The coolest feature that I have found so far is the scan feature. If I don’t want to look up a food I just take out my phone and scan the bar code. It pops up immediately!
The hardest part about using this tool effectively is reporting the serving sizes. You don’t want to have to measure out every little things. I simply eyeball about how much I have had. If it says that 1/4 cup is a serving and there are 4 servings, I know that if I eat 1/4 of the product it is 1 serving and if I eat 1/2 it is 2 servings. You can change the servings sizes in the program if needed as well to help you accurately report your meals.
To use this program in the most effective way I highly recommend that you download it to your phones, put it on your computer and even on your tablet if you have one. I have a window up all the time on my computer so I can input items quickly. All of the programs sync with each other so you can use them all to ensure you report your food easily.
To start I wouldn’t worry about how many calories it says that I need or try to figure out my ratios. The only thing you should worry about is accurately reporting your food to get an idea of how much you are consuming and what your protein, carbs and fats look like each day. Once you have started reporting and you can see what you are eating attempt to connect that to your results. Are you losing fat? If so keep doing what you are doing! If you are not losing or gaining, then you need to figure out where to adjust your program.
To start adjusting I would set my calories up to equal 13-14 calories per pound of bodyweight a day. You can change your information in the Goals section by clicking “change goals” and then “custom”.
To get this set right simply multiply your bodyweight by 14 to start. This is your daily calorie needs. It is a starting point you may find that you need to go lower than this. You will set your carb setting to 40%, your protein setting to 40% and your fat setting to 20%. This is your starting point. You can even set it up to track your fiber and sugars to ensure you aren’t getting in junky carbs.
After recording your food for a week you can assess your progress. Are you losing weight? Are you losing weight as quickly as you would like? If the answer is yes keep on the program until you stall out. If you are not then adjust your calories down first. Multiple your bodyweight by 12. This is your new goal.
You will reassess your progress each week and adjust your intake.
After dropping to 12 calories per pound of bodyweight I would adjust my ratios to 30% carbs, 40% protein, and 30% fat. Finally I would adjust to 20% carbs, 50% protein and 30% fat. This will get you the fastest weight losses.
You must remember that as you lose weight you have adjust your caloric needs. Each week update your current bodyweight into the system and get your new goals. For example, if I track my calories at 235lbs I would need 3,290 calories at 14/pound. However if I lose 5 lbs and now am 230 I need about a 100 less. It doesn’t seem like much but you need to adjust your weight and calories to make sure you are making progress.
Start using this system now to get better results. It is free and it is easy. I can promise you that we will be implementing this more into our system at the gym to get reports on your eating habits if you want any nutritional help.