Counting macronutrients can help athletes

Hannah Burkey Reporter

Counting macronutrients can yield the results many athletes are looking for.

“You want to get a certain amount of carbs, fats and protein. Those are your macros,” said Tanya Falcone, registered dietician and nutrition professor.

The general breakdown for an everyday person is an intake of 50 percent carbohydrates, 25 percent protein and 25 percent fat, Falcone added. 

However, every person requires a different percentage based on their own activity, especially athletes, so Falcone recommends seeing a nutritionist.

The basic 20 percent fat, 20 percent protein and 50 percent carbs breakdown provides a healthy base for the everyday person, Falcone said. “It helps control your blood glucose, control your carbohydrates and helps you get the protein you need in.

“Follow the breakdown throughout the day. Take the 25 percent protein, 25 percent fat and 50 percent carbs and split it up evenly among meals,” Falcone added. 

Eating breakfast, lunch, dinner and two snacks is the recommended eating schedule, Falcone said.

Falcone recommended the “Lose It!” app to track macros throughout the day and to make sure all meals are well-balanced. You can also enter your workouts and goals into the app. 

“I always recommend seeing a dietician the first time you want to track your macros,” Falcone said. “We will calculate your calorie requirements for what your goals are, whether you are trying to gain weight, lose weight or maintain.”

The dietician will also take your workouts into consideration and adjust your meal plan accordingly, Falcone added. 

Student athletes also believe counting macros has made a huge difference in their lives. 

“Counting macros has been a huge part of achieving my goals,” said senior special education major Autumn McGarvey.

McGarvey has been lifting for a while, so counting her food intake is important to her.

“Counting has improved my eating habits in general,” McGarvey added. “I eat much healthier food now.”

Hannah Burkey is a recreation and fitness reporter. Contact her at [email protected]