Eating with Macros: A Day in the Life

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When I started posting about my macro tracking journey a while back, the questions started coming. Then after answering a few questions and posting in detail about my macro lifestyle (yes, I said “lifestyle,” NOT “diet”), the questions actually started?pouring?in! Among all of the requests, the most common was for a visual example of exactly what a day in the macros life looks like. HOW do I (and you) actually translate the principles of this way of eating into what to eat?

I was asked to do a news segment on the topic for a local station and figured what better way to teach than to show EXACTLY what my foods look like. Since I Facebook LIVEd the segment, you all can watch it too. Yay?love technology! Click HERE if you want to watch. It?s long (but super cute because Cash came along to help out!), so if you don?t want to watch, and you want the full breakdown of what and how-to, just keep reading?


So, we’ve already covered the basics of the macros way of eating in my previous post.? But just to quickly recap before we get to the “meat and potatoes” of the post (pun intended), let’s talk about what a Macro Diet is.?Well, it?s not really a DIET, per se, but it?s the best?way to fine tune?a diet for your own wants and needs. I STILL carb cycle, and Chris STILL carb cycles, but we’ve actually taken carb cycling to?another level by tracking our daily macronutrient intake while carb cycling.

The plain and simple of it is that it is?NOT “clean eating,” but it’s not “unclean eating” either. Clean eating diets require you ONLY eat foods on the “healthy” list and deprivation is the name of the game. This is hard for most?people to follow, myself included.?The idea behind a macro-based plan, however, is that no foods are off limits, but instead we track our proteins, carbs, and fats for each day until we reach our?goal macronutrient numbers. So if I want a donut, I eat a donut. But I am aware (thanks to MyFitnessPal) of the exact macronutrient breakdown of that donut (high fat and carb content) and plan accordingly for the rest of my day.

This begs the question, “Is this easier or harder than clean eating?” While the food part is easier (because c’mon…allowing yourself pizza every now and then is MUCH easier than saying you can never eat it again), the actual calculating part is harder and much more tedious. I happen to love math, and I love treats…so this is a (marshmallow) dream (bar) come true for me. If you aren’t too keen on math?like Chris (ha!)?we can help you out. Download our free Macro Counting 101 Ebook now. Our simple guide will give you the basics of macro tracking and will help you figure out the appropriate macros for you and your goals.

Alright, so on to my sample day. This particular day’s goal for me is 120g protein, 250g carbohydrate, and 50g fat. While this happens to be my lower carb day, it actually has wonderfully balanced macros for the average person (about 50% carb, 25% protein, 25% fat). I’m not saying this is right for you, just giving an example. I’ll share info at the bottom of this post on how you can calculate your own macronutrient needs, but here’s a little breakdown of exactly what one of my recent days looked like.

Meal 1 (every single day for me, no joke) consists of a protein shake (1 scoop) and a Marshmallow Dream Bar. Starbucks should send me free MDBs for life with all the promo I give them. πŸ˜‰ Ha!


This meal contains 25g protein, 49g carb, 5g fat. Soooo, let’s do some math here and subtract those macros from my macros that I started with?remember, they were 120g P, 250g C, and 50g F. After meal 1, I have 95g P, 201g C, and 45g F left in my macro bank. You follow how I am doing that? Easy!

Okay, now on to meal 2. A few hours later I am eating 5.3 ounces nonfat plain Greek yogurt, 1 cup of strawberries, topped with 1/4 cup of THE best low-fat granola by KIND (Banana Nut Clusters).


This meal has 18g P, 37g C, and 2g F. Back to math class here…subtracting these numbers from my macro bank means I now have 77g P, 164g C, and 43g F left over for the rest of the day.

Next up, one of my favorite convenience meals?1 cup of brown rice pasta with 3 ounces extra-lean ground turkey, 1/4 cup marinara, and 1 1/2 cups of steamed broccoli to keep me full. This meal is SO easy to make if you have the brown rice pasta and ground turkey meal prepped in advance like we like to do.


My pasta perfection has 26g P, 52g C, and 3g F. Macro bank, after subtracting these numbers, is now at 51g P, 112g C, and 40g F.

Early afternoon, I will eat some more meat and veggies?this time with rice?to keep my hunger minimized and my blood sugar levels stable. This meal is 3 1/2 ounces grilled chicken, 1/2 cup jasmine rice, 1 ounce teriyaki sauce, and some mixed veggies.


This meal has 25g P, 34g C, and 3g F.?After mowing this down in 3 seconds flat (okay, I’m not that fast), I have 26g P, 78g C, and 37g F left for the day.

Now you will notice I have been going super low fat for most of the day. Yes, I am aware of this…and this isn’t THE way to do macro counting, this is MY way of doing it. I do this because I want to bank my fats and a decent amount of carbs for my last meal of the day. I know that by saving these macros for night, I can enjoy a perfectly calculated, on-plan indulgence meal.

And my indulgence meal is….gluten-free, peanut butter-topped Eggo waffles. Yes…I am serious. The kid in me will never go away. I legit lick every. single. spot. off of this plate.


To be exact, this meal consists of 3 gluten-free Eggo waffles, 3 tablespoons all-natural chunky peanut butter, 1/8 cup pure maple syrup, and 1 low fat mozzarella string cheese. Macros for the heaven-on-a-plate are 26g P, 78g C, and 37g F…which is EXACTLY what my macro bank had left!! Bingo, bango, bongo, baby. To summarize, I’ve put it all in one handy dandy printable graphic for you:HeidiMacrosBLOGopt

Now in full transparency, I rarely finish a day spot on. This happened to work out perfectly, but usually I am 1 gram over or under on each of the macros. Give it a try and be patient with yourself. I remember at the beginning I would literally be OVER my carb allowance by noon because I still hadn’t figured out the balance and proper way to divvy up my macros. Over time, I feel like I’ve become a macro queen, and you can too!

Now about that macro calculating and tracking for those of you who would like to get nerdy with me and start calculating macros…and eating peanut butter waffles at night. ;)?The Transform App?2.0 finally has macro tracking capabilities! ?So now you can track the foods that YOU eat.



And to help you calculate the appropriate macros for you, we?ve created our Macro Counting 101 ebook?available for FREE download now. ?Pick it up while you can because this baby won?t be free for long! ;-)? Click here to download!

Now that I’ve made us all hungry, let’s end this blog now and go eat some delicious, nutritious, and possibly-indulgent macros.

Hugs and (chocolate) kisses,


Related reading:

Macro Tracking for the Win! All of Your Questions Answered
Carb Cycling 101
Heidi-Approved (& Macro-Friendly) Fast Food Picks
It Really Is All About the Promise

And click HERE for the GMAZ Facebook Live Segment in case you missed it above. πŸ˜‰

207 Responses

  1. Hi! Thank you for posting this. Do you have an alternative /similar macro granola? Can?t find this one anymore?anywhere. Thank you!

    1. Hi Ann: You can try any of the KIND granolas, and they should be pretty close. πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Elise: First, check with your physician before beginning ANY nutrition and exercise program while breastfeeding! Your calorie needs are a little higher per day since you are ?eating for two,? so you may want to adjust according to what your physician suggests! πŸ™‚

    2. OMG! please tell me your massing, cuz you get to pound back 3x the carbs I get right now (on a cut), and I’m big enough to look like i’ve eaten you :/

  2. So to carb cycle with this… you don’t need to do every other day of NO carbs or keto-like? Just lower carbs…. I can’t believe this is your low carb day. Would love to see a high carb day:-)

  3. I am currently doing the Transform app. I was wondering, the other day I noticed on my high carb day that my carbs were not where they needed to be. My question is do I add carbs to my last meal or keep to the Low Carb last meal and try to do better my next high carb day. Thank you

  4. Heidi, you mentioned the 120g protein, 250g carbs, and 50g fat were your macros for a low carb day. What do they look like on high carb day? What would the macro percentages look like on higher carb day, too?

    1. Hi Jessica: For macro tracking, each person’s macros/percentages are different based on their biometrics and goals, and they change as someone progresses towards their goals. Macro tracking is a very individual thing. Chris and Heidi’s app, The TRANSFORM App, offers you an individualized macro program and a workout program, and it adjusts as you progress towards your goals. If you’d like to learn more about this option, go here: It’s amazing! Or there’s a link to a macro calculator in this post also. I hope this helps! πŸ™‚

  5. Hi!

    I have been reading a lot about tracking macros, and decided to log my food into the MyFitnessPal app. I’ve noticed that my sugar intake is a little high, and that was before even logging in my dinner! Should I be concerned about the sugar levels when tracking macros?


    1. Hi Lisa: Yes, we should always keep an eye on our sugar intake, and we’d like most of our sugar to be from natural sources (fruits, etc.). If you’re hitting your carb numbers AND choosing healthy options 80% of the time, you should be good to go! πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Melissa: There’s a link to a macros calculator in this post, and it can help you figure out how many grams of each macro to eat each each day. Check it out! πŸ™‚

  6. Do you eat the same macro break down on workout days as you would non-workout days? Wondering why such high carbs? Is this only for people who lift? Thanks!

    1. Hi Emily: Heidi does change her days depending on her workout days. She follows a high carb day, low carb day schedule based on her goals. And yes, the high carbs are based on her workout schedule/goals. What works best for each person, macro-wise, can be very different. Each person’s body can react differently to different combos of macros. Hope that helps! πŸ™‚

  7. What if I don’t have my first meal within 30 minutes of waking? I sometimes wake up early or work out before work…


  8. Thank you so much for this post! It makes me think that I can actually do this now and make it a lifestyle not just a “diet”. Before I was so obsessed over only eating whole foods (which is good to a point) but I would get down on myself when I would eat something “BAD” like a cinnamon bun. I love how this article and counting macros gives me a new perspective and relationship with food, so now I am trying not to be down on myself if I want a cinnamon bun from time to time, I can just fit it into my macros! Such a relief, and it is working I am loosing weight and not binging on the food that I used to coin as “bad”.

  9. This meal plan looks great. It makes me kinda upset though. I?m on the transform app and don?t have anywhere near these macros and am still not losing. I?ve been working out 5-7 days a week for 60-90 mins. The transform physique level 2 is pretty similar to what I?ve been doing for 2 years yet after 70 days I?m down just 3 lbs. I had my husband hide the scale today. I just can?t take seeing it anymore. I?m wondering if once you gain you just have that last stubborn 15-20lbs for life?

    1. Thank you for your comment! Each person’s program is different based on their biometrics, workouts, and goals, and it can be more difficult to lose those last stubborn pounds. But it’s doable! And remember, as you’re working out, you’re replacing fat with muscle, so the scale might not be a true picture of what’s going on. Have you been taking your measurements regularly? Taking your progress pictures? Inputting your progress into the app so it can ask you about adjustments when necessary? I know Heidi’s put on 10-15ish+ (I can’t remember the actual number) of muscle, so her weight on the scale is higher than before she started her physique competition training. Please reply back and we’ll continue to figure this out! πŸ™‚

  10. Hi,

    I’m new to “tracking macros”, so I have to say THANK YOU, a LOT, for showing this, now I getting to know how does this thing about macros works. I’ve been using MFP app since 2 months ago. I’m eating 3 meals a day (well, I guess 4 because I take a little snack after my workout) but my BIGGEST confusion is: Do I need to eat the same amount of carbs-protein-fat grams in every meal? or I can consume more grams of these, for example, in my breakfast? and less in the dinner, and so on, etc…? I weight 143, I’m 27 yo, my height is 5’4, and I want to lose 20 pounds, I’ve been eating well since 2 months and a half, (I’ve lost 11 pounds) and I’ve been working out (cardio+strength) for 3 weeks now, 6 days a week, 90 minutes or so in total. I’ve been consuming 1,200 calories, but since I’m not sure I’ve been doing “researches” about macros and I’ve been changing them (like 4 times). Today I changed them into 137gr carbs- 106gr protein- 27 gr fat and added 20 extra calories to my calories deficit. I feel that I don’t really want to complicate about all this, I just want to lose weight, burn fat and have a lean body. Today I weighted myself (do it every week) but I did not lose even a pound, but I look thinner, I think it is because I have gained muscles (maybe because of the strength workouts 3 times a week) but the THING is that I really want to lower the numbers in my scale. Hope you can help e with the macros distribution, plus some advice, I’d really APPRECIATE IT. Thanks for reading me.

    Hope you can HELP me!

    1. Hi Se: Congrats on losing 11 pounds – that’s awesome! It sounds like you’re definitely on the right track to achieve your goals. There’s an awesome macros calculator in this post, and it can help you figure out your macro numbers: As far as spreading your macros out throughout your day, you can do that in whatever way fits best, and you don’t have to split them evenly between each meal. And Chris and Heidi’s new app, Transform with Chris and Heidi ( can figure out your numbers for you, as well as offer a totally customized nutrition and workout program (and you can do your own workout program too). And your plan will change as you progress towards your goals also, so you don’t have to figure out anything! Your first week is free if you want to check it out. If not, check out the macros calculator in the post link I shared, and go from there. You can do this! πŸ™‚

  11. Hey team Powell
    I’ve been macro counting for the pat 3 weeks now! Loving it!!
    I do however struggle to meet my protein amount everyday.
    I’m training 4 times a week at the moment and I am slowly starting to feel the strain on my body for not eating enough protein. You know we’re not 26 anymore!!(almost 37!?)
    I want to know if and when I can use Protein Casein. I read it’s better to use in between meals and before bed as to Whei protein that should be taking after training.
    Any advice or suggestions would be great!

    1. Hi Liz: You can use whichever protein powders you like. In general, Chris and Heidi recommend low-fat, low-carb powders with around 20 grams of protein/serving, but again, use what you like that will help you get that protein. πŸ™‚

  12. Hello I have been doing the extreme and then I contacted pro physiques to calculate my macros. I’m confused because she has my fat and protein staying the same every day and just rotates my carbs up and down between 120 low carb days and 190 high carb days. I gained a lb this week and I’m logging everything in my fitness pal. Does this sound right to only switch carbs. I paid for the workouts and the nutrition part.

    1. Hi Emily: If you’re working with Pro Physiques, I’d follow their numbers since they’ve based them on you, your body composition, your workout routine, and your goals. You can do this! πŸ™‚

    2. I gained 2 lbs this week. Do you think this seems like a lot of carbs? I don’t think 120 carbs a day is low carb.

    3. Hi Emily: Did you get this carb number from the macros calculator? Your daily macro recommendations are based on your goals and body composition, and if you did use the calculator, please remember that it is a bit more generalized than if you were working with a macros coach who would base your recommendations specifically on your body composition, your workout schedule (day-to-day including intensity and duration), and some other factors unique to you. I hope that makes sense, and I hope this answers your question. If not, please reply! πŸ™‚

    4. I got the macros from the pro physiques trainer. I’m not sure if it just takes a while for your body to adjust to eating more carbs or what I have going on, but I have been on a steady gain since I started adding carbs in. I have been a low carb eater for several years. I’m just confused about the carb cycling I think because in the book it suggest only carbs for breakfast 2 days a week and the rest of the day just fat and protein on your low carb days. Then when you start doing the macro counting it’s a lot more carbs on the low carb days. I’m just trying to figure out if I should keep on this program or go with a lower carb high fat diet. I always get my protein in. That’s never a problem. It is just this crazy carb business and gaining weight that I’m concerned about.

    5. Hi Emily: I’d suggest you discuss your concerns with your Pro Physiques trainer and go from there. And remember, like you said, it can take your body a bit of time to adjust to a new way of doing things, especially if you’ve been on low carbs for that long. I hope you can find the answers you’re seeking!

  13. Heidi, I used the calculator that you suggested and it says that I should be taking in 1,798 calories, 126 protein, and 50 fat per day. I am about to start the Turbo Carb Cycle from the book. Should I be implementing these numbers into that cycle or stick to the 1500 on the high days and 1200 on the low days? x, Aalyhia

    1. Hi Aalyhia: If you’re going to follow any of our carb cycles, your macros are all figured out for you. You just have to follow the program, so stick to the 1200 cals on low carb days and 1500 cals on high carb days. You can totally do this!

  14. Hey where can I get recipes with macro counts because I though the book will give you the macros counts

    1. Hi Elida: If you’re talking about “Extreme Transformation,” all of the macros are included with each recipe. All of the recipes on this blog also have the macro counts. πŸ™‚

  15. Hi, I’m starting to carb cycle and trying to figure out what my high and low day should be? I have my everyday macros, but how do I know what high carb days should be and low carb days?

    1. Hi Brittany: If you’re following any of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, everything is figured out for you. If not, then we’d suggest you work with a macros coach since what will work best for you is based on some very individual things with carb cycling. πŸ™‚

  16. This has been a God-send for me! For a planner and organizer this way of eating is awesome!
    One question I have is in regards to sugars for the day. I have heard and read that sugars should be kept to 50 g or lower. With eating fruit, how do you keep that below 50 g? Is this even a “true” statement?

    1. Hi Amy: Yes, this is a solid recommendation. You can incorporate fruit and other healthy carbs into your day to hit that number. It does take some planning, but it can be done. πŸ™‚

  17. Hi there! I’ve been on the macro lifestyle for about 11 months. It’s probably the most affective plan I have ever been on. I have been able to stay under or at my goal weight the whole time. Even through the holidays. My question is how long is it safe to stay on a 3500 calorie plan? My weight fluctuates 2-4 pounds every once in a while but my body doesn’t look as good as it did in the beginning. I’m also starting to feel physically tired and my muscles kind of feel fatigued a lot. I work out 4 days a week. I do a mixture of cardio and weight training and my sessions last about an hour. I’m a massage therapist 5 days a week and I do about 3-4 clients a day. I’m still I. The “lose weight” option on my macro count. Should I be switching to the “maintain weight” macro count? If I switch then my app will want me to eat more and I’m just afraid I’ll start to gain fat. πŸ™

    1. Hi Ashley: Since macro tracking is a very individual thing based on your body composition, workout routine, goals, etc., you might want to talk to a macros coach who can help you put together a plan going forward to help you achieve your specific goals. Sometimes, the smallest tweaks can make all the difference! If a macro coach isn’t in the cards, you might want to try switching to maintenance and see how it goes. We wish you all the best!

  18. What program did you follow when you were pregnant? I’m 19 weeks and have followed 80% paleo diet for a few years but seem to be gaining more weight with my second pregnancy. Any guidance, suggestions are appreciated πŸ™‚

  19. I just started Extreme Transformation yesterday and I woke up feeling great today! I’m wondering how hard and fast the three-hour rule is? With my current job in retail sales I find it difficult to eat every three hours plus my break is only 15 minutes long. Any advice would be appreciated!

  20. Hi Heidi.. Thanks for guiding on how to track macros..was really helpful.
    Do you consume the protein shake in the morning before the workout or after??

  21. Hi there – can I ask about sugar? I am making an effort to cut down and this looks like at least 50g of sugar – what is the Powell view on the amount of sugar we should be consuming?

  22. I have a question about tracking macros…. When it comes to tracking “bread” let’s say….. It says it contains 16g carbs, 3.5g fat, 2g protein for 1 slice. Do I subtract all those numbers from my daily allowed total? Same with plain Greek yogurt… It contains 18g P, 6gC, 0gF… Do I subtract the 6gC from my daily alloted amount?


    1. Yes! You’ll subtract any macros you eat (protein, carbs, and fats) from your daily macros total. πŸ™‚

  23. Possibly a silly question here. I have made the effort this new year to take better care of myself. So i’ve started by consuming 1200 calories a day and also tracking my macros. I’m using my fitness pal for this. This week i have stuck to my targets and exercised 5 days out of 6 (mostly cardio – seeing a trainer next week for a weights program) and depsite this i’ve gained half a kilo. But i’ve realised that my net calorie intake is between 350-700 calories. So am i gaining weight because i’m not eating enough even though i take in 1200 a day. IS that possible??

    1. Hi Alie: It sounds like you’re on the right track! To lose weight, you need to have a calorie deficit – you burn more calories during the day than you consume. So if you consume 1200 calories a day, then you’ll need to burn more than that through your daily activities. Chris and Heidi do recommend that women not go below 1200 calories a day also. One thing: Sometimes MFP adds back in any calories you burn through exercise, which is definitely not something you want, so I’d keep an eye on that also. You can do this!

    2. I had the same problem! I lost weight the first two weeks on 1200 calories and then starting gaining even though my meals and workouts were spot on. So I treated myself with pizza and cake and the next day I had actually lost a pound. So it’s definitely because you’re not giving your body enough calories. I upped my calories to 1600 on days I was weight training and kept it at 1200-1300 on pure cardio days and now I’m consistently losing. I hope that helps! I’m not Heidi Powell but it seems to work for me:)

  24. so when following a a macro plan & doing carb cycling – do i add my daily macros for the week to get a total and on carb cycle days the total end would end up the same? i am confused.
    sample daily carb goals 220 – 220 X 7 = 1540 a week –
    carb cyle MOn- 250 carb Tues 100 carb Wed 280 c Thur 220 carb Friday 100 carb , etcc.. would i add all and divode by 7 and the total should still be 1540 carbs a week?

    simple: how do you carb cyle when following macros? please please help. thank you!

    1. Hi Christine: Since it is more difficult to figure out a weekly carb cycle using the general macro calculators, it’s best to work with a macros coach who can put a plan in place based on your current body composition, workout routine, and goals that will work best for you and that can be modified as necessary. If you’re following one of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycling plans (, all of your macros for both low and high carb days are figured out for you. Hope that helps!

  25. I was wondering when you normally workout on a typical day with this macro breakdown. I struggle knowing when to have my carbs and if I should time them according to my workouts. Thank you for all your help!

  26. What protein powder do you recommend that doesn’t taste too bad? I am a chocolate fan! Thank you guys for what you do! I loved your show and still watch the reruns! It inspires me! I just don’t know where to start!

  27. When I count my macros on my fitness pal, should I log my workout too? Or will that mess with the numbers?

    1. Hi Jessica: That’s totally up to you. One thing to keep in mind is that some trackers add back in the calories you burn through exercise, and you don’t want that to happen. πŸ™‚

  28. Hi,
    Can you please tell me if I am macro counting as well as carb cycling, do I still keep my dinners low/no carb? Or, can I spread my macros during the entire course of the day as long as I am meeting my counts.

    1. Hi Ruth: If you’re following any of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, here are the recommended macro percentages for each meal: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast): Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. If you’re not following one of their carb cycles, it’s best to work with a macros coach who can help you put a program together for you based on your body composition, goals, and workout routine. There’s a link to Heidi’s macro coach in this post. πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Elizabeth: Most of the time Heidi’s shakes are made with water, but she does use unsweetened almond milk sometimes. πŸ™‚

  29. I’ve ready all of you and Chris’ books, and they have helped me tremendously in getting healthy and fit. I tried every diet from weight watchers to Atkins and beyond and would only have temporary results and be miserable. I have been counting macros and carb cycling for and am down 14 lbs and 27 inches!! I also participated in your summer slim down on dietBet. Thank you, and Chris, for being so motivating and sharing so much knowledge with us!

  30. I’m always confused on how to keep track. I work out daily but my eating is still off and am confused on macros, carbs good carbs, bad carbs. But I love these blogs, I read to keep learning more

  31. I’m so on board for gluten free waffles and Pb for dinner;) love this post thank you for really breaking it down!

  32. Thank you for this macros have always been confusing for me but this made so much sense! Thanks for breaking it down this way!

  33. This is the best article I have found and read on macros. It makes sense now!! I used to look at macros as if it were greek. Thanks!

  34. I discovered macro eating a couple years ago and it has totally changed my life. Growing up I was a twin; my twin sister has always been very petite and I was heavy in high school. As kids can be cruel I was made fun of a lot. After high school I found a true passion for fitness and health in general. Now 30, with 2 kids 2 and under I have maintained a healthy weight by watching macros. Prior to learning about macros I did clean eating and always punished my self for “splurging” macro counting is such a more realistic lifestyle! I love this blog! #freembdforlife!

    1. Hi, I’m a twin too but it’s opposite for us but I still get confused on the macros. How or what is the best way to learn?

  35. I’m a big supporter of Macros! I started tracking macros early this year and got into the best shape I’ve been in. I’m almost 20 weeks pregnant with baby boy#3 and have loosely tracked macros this whole time (but hey, food aversions are real, and omg, shredded chicken made me want to gag the first trimester, so I did the best I could do!). Love macros and it’s one reason I follow you on instagram.

  36. I love this post. I also like how you show what you eat all day. It’s hard to be consistent with food. I get bored or there are too many ingredients so I get overwhelmed

  37. This is awesome! Much more realistic! I have done meal plans before, much harder! I feel like this is easier to do because you aren’t binging on things later, or starving! I will have to try this! I follow cori too, I’ll check out her calculator too! Thanks for your examples! They’ve really helped me!

  38. Thank you for always being transparent!!!! I love all the tips and simply-making it easy!!! I love the waffles for dinner-we do that sometimes too!!!

  39. This was helpful! I have been counting my macros for 2 weeks now. I try to be strict but tend to have a hard time staying under my fat percentage. I feel really good eating this way but have not lost any weight. Guess I will keep pressing on!

  40. I love the easy break down you gave in this blog, Heidi! I’ve been struggling with my weight the past three years since having my third baby. Thank you for being such a great inspiration!

  41. Hey is Casi Stauffer! My husband and I have tried every fad there is when it comes to dieting! Now that we have been coached on macros I finally feel like this can be my lifestyle! I feel like I eat SO MUCH FOOD! and I’m still dropping weight! I love how much you and Chris talk about macros and help people learn about nutrition! It’s always fun to look at your recipes and try them for ourselves.

  42. Hi πŸ™‚ My name is Dominika and I am 19 years old, 175cm tall and 75kg heavy university student. I have always been a girl who struggled with weight and appearance and tried to loose weight over and over again. 2 years ago i lost 10kilos by low-carb diet and weight-training. But i gained it back in the previous two years. My problem is definetely binging and eating properly. I really love weight training and do not have problems with kardio. ( now i am trying to weight train 4x a week and do cardio 2x 40mins a week). I would like to start with carb cycling, but i think that this non-macro tracking measurement is not for me… What macro intake would you suggest to me in low-carb and high-carb days and with which carb-cycling program should i start? πŸ™‚ Thank you sooo much in advance! :)))))

    1. Hi Dominika: If you’re going to follow any of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, (and I’d recommend starting with the Extreme Cycle), here are the macro percentages to aim for: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast): Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. If you’re going to follow a different plan, then it’s best to work with a macro coach who can help you figure out what will work best for you. πŸ™‚

  43. HI! Thanks for all your really good suggestions. I have been trying the macro counting for one week and I still do not everything right (my daily balance is often not right) but I think this will come with time. My biggest issue is getting the proteins in. I do not eat meat and I have no clue what I can eat instead! I do eat tofu, but not every day and not at every meal. The same is for fish. I do not really now what to eat which is protein rich and low in fat for high carb days! thank you for any suggestion!

    1. Hi Martina: If you eat eggs, these are a great form of protein. Nonfat/low fat Greek yogurts and cottage cheeses can also be an option, as well as tempeh, and bean and soy proteins. One key to getting enough protein is to have a protein with every meal, and Chris and Heidi recommend eating 5 meals, spaced every 3 hours, every day. You can do this!

  44. Ok so following the turbo plan. A lovely friend gave me a huge box of organic beets. How do I count those? As Carbs I am guessing. I want to spiralize them. But also roasting some.

  45. I do not understand at all what to with the percentages that I have seen with the cycles. I know my daily calorie intake because of the calculator that Heidi suggested but I do not understand how to put all those numbers together for high and low carb days. I do not know how to use the percentages to figure out my meals. My calorie goal is 2177.

    1. Hi Brittany: If you’re following one of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, here are the recommended macro percentages for all meals: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast): Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. To convert percentages to grams of macros, each gram of fat = 9 calories, and each gram of protein or carb = 4 calories. So to figure out your fat grams, for example, you’ll take the calories x fat% / 9 = grams of fat for that meal or for that day. Hope that helps! πŸ™‚

  46. Hi Heidi,

    So I have your Extreme Transformation book, is it intended for someone who has a ton of weight to lose? I only ask because it has meals calculated for men or for women but you’ve also mentioned about calculating our macros to best fit our goals. It feels a bit generalized and I really want to follow the plan because it’ll make my life easier but I also want to make sure I’m going to get the best results. I did however, total all of the fats, carb, and protein in day 1’s plan and it put me over in MY calculated macros for protein. It all seems so overwhelmingly complicated.

    1. Hi Nickie: Yes, “Extreme Transformation” is meant for people who have any number of pounds to lose from “a ton” to just a few. The macro calculating Heidi’s talking about can also be an option, but it’s best to work with a macro coach who can base your program on your body composition and goals and continue to monitor and tweak your program as necessary. With Chris and Heidi’s carb cycling program, they’ve figured out all your macros for you, which makes things much less complicated, and their program has been proven to be successful – it’s the same program they use with their contestants on the show. I’d give it a try!

    1. Hi Priscilla: In Chris and Heidi’s carb cycling program, you’ll eat 1000 extra calories, and there aren’t any macro recommendations. You can eat anything you’d like to eat!

  47. I tried both of the macro calculators you recommended above and got VERY different results. Is one more accurate than the other? A 500 calorie a day difference in my overall macro intake. Not sure which one to go with? Thanks!

  48. When calculating your carb counts in your macro calculations, do you go with the total amount of carbs or the net carbs (after subtracting fiber)?

    For instance, today was a low carb day and I had 51 grams of carbs, but 16g of that was fiber- so the net carbs would be 35g for the day. Obviously, taking out the fiber would affect my percentages.

    I’m trying the extreme cycle but the 51g of carbs puts me at 14% carbs for the day’s total calories.

    Does fiber play a role in your macros? I have a feeling that it does not, but wanted to ask.

  49. One more question as get started on this transformation journey…

    My guess is that the condiments and dressings fall into the carb category since that’s the page they are on in the book. So, even though I can have a salad with my final meal of the day (since all of the vegetables I use are on the unlimited list), does that mean I cannot have the 4 T of fat-free french dressing to go on that salad during the final meal of the day?

    One of my meals today was 1 C brown rice, 4 oz extra lean ground turkey, 1 C broccoli and 1/2 C of marinara sauce. Did I go over on carbs because of the marinara is under the condiments/dressings = carbs (total for the meal was about 280)?

    1. Hi Chris: Condiments/Dressings are a totally separate category in the Extreme Cycle and can be used throughout your day. Just remember to keep track of those calories too. πŸ™‚

  50. I would really love to become a personal trainer/nutrition coach to possibly eventually become and help coach body building competitors. Can you reccommend which certifications I would need to get for that.?!

    1. Hi Cynthia: What an awesome goal! ACE, ACSM, NASM, ISSA, and NSCA are among the top certification organizations, and all offer several different types of certifications, so check them out! πŸ™‚

  51. Do I need to count carbs and protein in veggies i.e lettuce or broccoli? I am sure starchy items i.e potatoes you would count the carbs. Thank you!

    1. Hi Shannon: It’s best to count everything you put into your mouth. It helps keep us accountable! πŸ™‚

  52. For the snack you list 5.3 ounces of nonfat plain Greek yogurt, which conveniently is how much is in a small container.

    Being a guy, do I still eat just 1 container like you list… or am I supposed to eat more?

    Measuring yogurt as a “fist” is kind of hard. πŸ™‚

    Last, I know from your book 2 tablespoons is a fat portion. But is there a weight I could go by for nuts…. or even a number like 12 almonds? The seems much easier than having to chop up nuts to see how much can fit into 2 tablespoons

    Thanks so much!!

    1. Hi Eric: Here are the macro percentages for each of the carb cycles which will help you know how much of each to eat for each meal: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast): Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. Hope this helps!

  53. Thank you Heidi for showing examples of meals you eat while macro counting. I would love to see more meal examples in the future. Thanks again!

  54. Heidi, if I’m carb cycling and counting macros, how should my macros vary from a low carb day to a high carb day? Thank you!

    1. Hi Sophie: If you’re following one of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, here are the recommended macro percentages for each cycle: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast): Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. If you’re not following of their carb cycles, it’s best to work with a macros coach who can help you figure out what your macros should be based on your body composition and goals. πŸ™‚

  55. This is awesome information!

    I do have one question – I use sugar free syrup with my morning oats. Do sugar alcohols count towards the total carbs or is it like Atkins where only net carbs are counted?

    1. Hi Maura: Sugar free syrup is fine, just be sure to keep track of this and watch the amount you use. πŸ™‚

  56. Ok – I’m totally sold!

    Two questions…coffee (I know, I know) is a must. I don’t see an allowance for it unless I can just include the few carbs (for the coffee and stevia) in my total morning macro. Second, I’ve been playing with this for a a couple of days now and when I was short on my carbs after my 7pm meal, I had a bowl of air-popped popcorn to help boost it. I knocked me over my protein, but helped get me closer on carbs. yay or nay on a later night snack? Oops, one more question I guess…if we eat at exactly the same time everyday, won’t our body become accustomed to that and shut down metabolism shortly before consumption? Thanks!!!

    1. Hi Chris: On Chris and Heidi’s carb cycling plans, black coffee (yes, you can use stevia as a sweetener), is totally okay, just make sure you’re drinking all your water too. If you’re following any of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, they recommend eating every 3 hours for a total of 5 meals a day, and this has been proven to be very successful.

  57. This post was by far the most helpful. Thank you! I have what is hopefully a quick question. πŸ™‚
    After I figure out my macros, how do I figure out my macros for high and low carb days?
    Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Anna:If you’re following any of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycling programs, here are the recommended macro percentages: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast): Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. If you’re following a different program, it’s best to work with a macros coach who can help you put together a program based on your body composition and your goals. πŸ™‚

  58. Hey! So I just started my Marco journey, pretty excited actually. I’m using myfitnesspal and it keeps telling me I go over my sugar level. I eat a decent amount of fruit a day. So my question is, do I only pay attention to the actual carb count, or do I take in a count to the sugar count as well?

  59. Can you comment more on how the macro calculation might be different for obese people? Here are my numbers using the macros calculator (1999 cals a day, 136g carbs, 239g protein, 56g fat) but I also have 44 percent body fat so how would that change those numbers?? I am 34 yo F…pretty sedentary…I am 5’9” and 290 lbs and I have PCOS as well.

    1. Hi Heather: The macros calculator takes into account your current body weight and goals, so you should be good to go! And it’s best to discuss any new nutrition program with your healthcare team and then follow any modifications they might recommend. You can do this!

    2. So I get like literally almost double the protein but half the carbs as Heidi…fat is about the same. Could u show an example of a day with that–food wise??

  60. Hi Heidi! I have been counting macros for the past 7 months and felt great! I am now in “the bulking stage’ of my macro life ! My goal is to do a figure comp in 2017. I am at the 400 carb range. I am not doing dairy and VERY low sugar. I feel like i am choking my carb macros down and ALWAYS full to the point of a stomach ache πŸ™
    Any advice??

    1. Hi Heather: Since with macro counting can be different for every person based on your goals, current body composition, etc., you might want to work with a macros coach who can look at what you’re doing and make changes in your program as needed. Here’s the group that Heidi works with: And they will work with you at a distance too. And what an awesome goal!

  61. Hello there! Is there a book you can recommend for information on following a macro plan? I’ve read the blog posts and under the concept however to fully get it to sink in I prefer a “hold-in-your-hands-and turn-the-page” kind of book! Something I can get bookmark and scribble in! Thanks!

    1. Hi Megan: I’m so sorry, but I really don’t have any books to recommend. πŸ™

  62. Hi I need advice last year I did macros with the carb cycling and I went from 150 pounds to 110 pounds . This year I was changed and now my weight is going up I am at 1:36 and I feel like I’m just getting bigger and bigger and fatter I don’t know what to do on my low days my calories are under 1000 is that normal ?

    1. Hi Hailey: That is a bit low. Chris and Heidi recommend that women eat between 1200 and 1500 calories, and men eat between 1500 and 2000 calories a day depending on which carb cycle you’re following. If your body isn’t getting enough calories to function properly, it will start to hold fat as a survival mechanism. Try adding in more healthy calories to your day, and that should help. We wish you the best!

  63. Hi, I have used MFP in the past and went to the suggested link and have tweaked my macros. Should I unsync my Fitbit from MFP because it adds calories. Does the macro and calories provided already take exercise into account? Thank you!

    1. Hi Amanda: The macro calculator does take exercise into account, so if weight loss is your goal, you’ll want to subtract calories every day from that daily total. To lose weight, you need a calorie deficit, which means you burn more throughout the day than you consume. You can do this!

  64. Hello,

    I have two questions:
    1. If I’m trying to do macro counting and carb cycling is there really a difference in calories? Could you give an example. If you have time.
    2. Can I do 3 low carb days in a row instead of 2? I thought I read once that some bodybuilders will do up to 3 low carb days in a row. Will it cause problems gaining lean body mass if I do? Or any problems?
    Thanks so much you guys are wonderful.

    1. Hi Anna: If you’re carb cycling and macro counting, it’s best to work with a macros coach who can tailor your macros and your carb cycle to you and your goals. And it’s best to only do 2 low carb days in a row. Our bodies do need those carbs!

  65. Hi,
    So can I carb cycle along with counting macros for fat loss and if so how do I determine what days are low carb and what days are high carb days?

    1. Hi Ryan: If you follow any of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycling programs, all your macros are figured out for you! If you do your own carb cycling, it’s best to work with a macro coach who can help you tailor your low and high carb days to your goals.

  66. What’re thoughts about a shake or bar post workout? Is there a certain type or brand (Whey I know is best) for post workout, or bar, such as a Quest bar, then aim for dinner an hour or so later? Or if working out in the morning, breakfast should consist of proteins, carbs, and fats?

  67. Hi!
    I’m on the turbo-cycle and am very interested in counting the macro’s. Can you tell me if this is right?

    On High Carb day:

    150-200 grams of carbs
    100-150 grams of proteines
    40-55 grams of fat

    On Low Carb day:

    50-100 grams of carbs
    120-150 grams of proteines
    48-95 grams of fats

    Thanks in advance

    1. Hi Stephanie: Here are the recommended macro percentages for the Turbo Cycle: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast):
      Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%. Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. πŸ™‚

  68. Hello Chris and Heidi. I’m wrighting on the behave of my brother who is 400 pounds with two kids and a wife in Jacksonville Florida . My siblings and I have tried all possibles and he has tried and quite every time . We are afraid that out brother will meet the same fate as our father dying to soon for being stubborn . We are asking for your assistance and would love for Chris ‘s to intervene . We are running out of options and time .

    1. Hi Jason: I’m so sorry to hear about your brother’s struggles. Chris and Heidi would love to help him personally, but unfortunately, they’re not taking on clients right now. And we understand it is difficult to watch a loved one struggle with his obesity or health challenges. Remember that ultimately the transformation has to come from within. You cannot do this for your brother?he truly has to want it for himself. One thing you might try, and this is the first step Chris and Heidi take with every single client they work with, is to have him make and keep a small daily promise to himself. This promise doesn?t even have to be health related – the important thing is to build his confidence and personal integrity. Read about the process here: When he is ready to start his own transformation, have him check out Heidi and Chris’ carb cycling program in their books, “Extreme Transformation” and “Choose More, Lose More for Life.” ( These books contain Chris and Heidi’s complete mind, body, and food program, and these are the same tools they use on the show and with every client they work with. They work! He can learn about the program basics here: In addition to these tools, Chris and Heidi have recently created the Powell Metabolic Program, where their Arizona team members can provide not only clinical one-on-one coaching through his health insurance provider, but distance coaching as well. For more information, please visit or call 480.378.3522. Chris and Heidi are so excited to offer this new, more personal component to their transformation program! We wish your brother the best as he begins his transformation journey – he can do this!

  69. You. Are. Awesome! Great post. And love your last meal of the day! Makes me feel normal. ??????
    Thank you!

    1. I was wondering about this meal. On the extreme cycle the last meal recommends protein, fats and veggies how does this meal fit in to this?

    2. Hi Jacquie: Great question! When Heidi posted this post, she was on a bit of a different carb cycling program due to prepping for a competition. When following the Extreme Cycle, you will eat protein, fat, and veggies for every dinner. Hope that helps!

  70. Awesome post! I have finished reading ‘The 7-Day Carb Cycle Solution’. I am a 350lbs man. I have used the IIFYM calculator and it suggests I eat 2500 calories to lose weight. Should I use 2500 on High Carb days and around 2000 calories on the Low Carb days? Or stick with the 1500 (LC)/2000(HC). In addition, how many calories should my cheat day consist of, if I decide to indulge. Thanks for your help! Much success to you and Team Powell :^)

    1. Hi Stephen: If you’re going to follow one of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, it’s best to follow the calorie recommendations for your chosen cycle. For cheat days, you can eat anything you want to up to an extra 1000 calories (for a total of 3000 calories). You can do this!

  71. I wish I had your carb macros πŸ™ I have been following iifym since January – had amazing results. Did an 8 week challenge with an online instagram coach and had the BEST results – results I never thought I could have. We were supposed to reverse out of the macros up to give our bodies a break… and my body isn’t happy πŸ™ It’s like I never did the challenge – although I have kept up my workouts religiously and stuck with counting macros… I’m heavier than before my challenge started and I do NOT get it. At all! I’m not even up to where I started the challenge… so… I love the iifym lifestyle… I need to get to maintenance and can’t – my clothes are already not fitting!

    I’m going to keep trying… it worked so well before. Not sure what happened. I’m going to recalculate with the links you offered! Thank you for sharing your day with us! super helpful.

  72. Thanks for the info but I.m still having a hard time following how to know how to count macros and carb cycle. I’ve counted macros in the past and does work and even use the iifym calculator like Heidi suggest. However how do you switch up between high and low carb days. I’m currently doing the extreme carb cycling and getting very frustrated because I am always hungry, especially on days I work out. My workouts consist of doing crossfit 4 times a week. I’ve actually gained weight since starting the extreme carb cycling. The macros calculator that Heidi suggests doing actually puts my Marcos much higher than what they have in the book. What is the best way to incorporate counting macros and carb cycling?

    1. Hi Heather: The macro recommendations in the book are general ones, which have been proven to work for many people, and each person’s “ideal” macros can be different based on body composition and workout routine. If you’d like to follow your own carb cycling macros, it’s best to work with a macro coach if possible. If a coach is not possible, here are the recommended macro percentages for the Extreme Cycle, and these can be applied to any daily calorie goal: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. Hope this helps!

  73. Hello,
    I’ve been following Chris and Heidi’s carb cycling plan for about 7 months and now I’m ready to add the macro component to give myself the extra fine tuning I need. I’m just slightly confused. I know in carb cycling I should aim for 1500 on HC days and 1200 on LC carb days. The macro calculator says I should get 1722 calories a day, but how do I adjust that for a low carb day? Or do I stick with the 1500/1200? Essentially I’d like to lose more fat but continue building muscle, as I’m a power lifter. I want to make sure my body is getting what it needs to meet my goals but I’m having a hard time finding specific information on any websites. I know a macro coach is the best way to go but at this point it’s not in the cards, so any information would be helpful! Thank you!! ?

    1. Hi Faith: Chris and Heidi have figured out all your macros for you in their programs, so if you’d like to formulate your own carb cycle macro numbers, unfortunately, a coach is the best way to go since your correct macros depend a lot on your own body composition, goals, and work out intensity. Here are some percentages that might help, and you can apply them to any daily calorie goals: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast): Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. And here’s another post that might help too: I hope this helps, and we wish you the best as you work to achieve your goals!

  74. Hi!
    I am starting macro tracking tomorrow morning and I am so excited! have been thin my whole life, but not always healthy and fit. I had my first baby a year and half ago and of course it changed my body, but I still struggle to keep weight on. I have committed to working out at least five days a week. I have already seen myself put on muscle and tone a lot but I want to continue getting in shape and putting on a little weight then keeping it on. Is there anything special I should be doing?

    1. Hi Alex: It sounds like you’re doing great! Tweak your macros as you need to, and you should be good to go.

  75. I just entered my info and it is showing 32% carbs; 43% Protein and 25% fat. Does these seem correct?

    1. Hi Cherry: The recommended macro percentages can be different for each person based on body composition, workout frequency/intensity, and goals, so if this is what the calculator is suggesting, I’d give them a try!

  76. I workout 45-60 minutes a day 6 days a week, I weight lift and do HIIT. I am having a hard time deciding if I am light activity or moderate activity to calculate my macros.

    1. Hi Jamie: In the Healthy Eater macro calculator link (the first link in the post), there are some descriptions lower on the calculator page that can help you figure out your intensity. πŸ™‚

  77. Thank you for posting the percentages! I had a quick question and I have heard different opinions. Do you count/weigh all vegetables? And Do you count dietary fiber?

    1. Hi Jess: It is best to count/keep track of everything you put into your mouth if at all possible.

  78. Why do you not count for the sugar content in your meals and snacks? Do you not worry about sugars and for those of us that do, what would a good daily sugar count be?

    1. Hi Tosha: Sugars are carbs, so any sugar numbers are included in the carbs number. There are many things you can track, but we try and keep things as easy as possible. Instead of aiming for a daily sugar number which can include natural sugars like those found in fruits, try and choose foods with as little added sugar as possible, and you’ll be good to go!

  79. Hi Team,

    I took Heidi’s advice and signed up with Pro physiques and I am a week into macro counting. Probably the best decision I ever made and only because I trust the Powells!! I have a question just out of curiosity mainly, when on low carb days on the extreme cycle meals 2,3,4,5 are comprised of protein fat and veggies does it mean that the whole carb grams for the day are consumed mainly at breakfast???
    I just want to thank the Powells and the Team for all the information they put out there day in day out because it makes a huge difference to the lives of many and it has made a tremendous impact in my life and in my long battle to find a balanced way to eat and maintain and not go overboard with weight gain etc etc. I live in Greece and yet your work has touched me more than any other in the country I live in! THANK YOU!!!!!

    1. Hi Tatiana: We’re so excited for you! For the Extreme Cycle, here are the macro percentages you’ll want to aim for: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. You can totally do this!

  80. I just find this fascinating! I’m very passionate about nutrition and fitness. I am a slim person and my goal is to put on a bit more muscles. I exercise 5 to 6 days a week. (weights and pilates). But my question is: for example if I try to make the meal you have here as an example at 1:00, how do I know how much broccoli, turkey or pasta should I put on my plate? I am a bit lost here…
    Admire your work! Sending love!!

    1. Hi Diana: You can use any of the macro tracking apps (Heidi’s favorite is MyFitnessPal) to help you know how much of each food to eat. These apps will figure everything out for you!

  81. I want to read this so much, but the gray lettering on a white background doesn’t provide enough contrast for me to read it. I can’t even zoom in to make it easier. Is there any way you can make the text darker and/or larger. These old eyes aren’t what they used to be.


  82. I’m so confused! How is 50% carbs a low carb day? I have all 3 of Chris’s books, but there’s always some information missing, i.e. total calories you should eat or what macro ratios one should aim for on low and high carb days etc.

    1. Hi Kris: Heidi’s goals are different than weight loss, so her macro percentages reflect this. If you’re following any of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, they’ve figured out all your macros for you to make things even easier. However, if you’d like to track your own macros, here are the recommended percentages: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast):
      Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. As far as calories, on the Extreme Cycle, women aim for 1500 calories a day and men aim for 2000 calories a day. On the other cycles, women eat 1200 calories on low carb days and 1500 calories on high carb days, and men eat 1500 calories on low carb days and 2000 calories on high carb days. Hope this helps!

  83. If you use the macro calculator, it will give you the number for each fat protein and carbs, but how do you alter that number for low carb and high carb days ?

    1. Shouldn’t Heidi also say she weightlifts and cardio , probably 2 hours a day!!!

  84. Hi!

    Thanks for including the links to the macro calculators. Do you know of any that that take breastfeeding into consideration?


    1. I’m so sorry, but I don’t. A general rule of thumb is to add 500 calories a day (but check with your doc to be sure), and you can add 500 calories to the total you get from one of the macro calculators and then apply the recommended percentages to that number. Hope that helps!

  85. That was great! If I am doing your Diet Bet and try to follow carb cycling best that I can. So you guys normally say low carb at dinner. So would you skip those waffles at night if following that plan? Also, you mentioned it was a low carb day, but on low carb days don’t you stop eating your main carbs at breakfast? I only ask cause the meals you provided look great but I am just trying to figure out if you are doing a different way of carb cycling then say the extreme transformation. Keep up the great work!

    1. Hi Amber: Since Heidi’s goals are different than weight loss, her macros and eating plan reflect these differences. If you’re following any of their carb cycles, then I’d stick to the recommendations for that carb cycle. Good luck with your DietBet!

  86. Hi Heidi! I went on the website to calculate my macros but I found the carbs are really High .. 347g on High carbs day and 305g on low carbs day. I’m not used to eat that much of These Because my current macros are 169g P / 76g C / 43g F but I want to now try Carb cycling. I’m a little afraid with These Numbers haha πŸ™‚ Thank you !

  87. Legit!! This is the best post ever from you guys!!! Firstly because you guys are so honest and second for inspiration. I started tracking Macros four weeks ago and two weeks ago started carb cycling after reading your books and blog posts. I’ve lost 4lb (great!!! Slow and sensible, i don’t need to lose a lot, but i’m not happy with body composition) but i always undereat on fats and protein (turns out Tuna is my best friend to hit my protein target). I’ve even been complimented for the first time in years on how slim i’m looking!! (By a gym trainer I haven’t seen for a while. Who thought 4lb would get a girl compliments!! <3)
    But i've struggled to know the quantity of macro i should be eating on a high vs low carb day. This needs tweaking.
    For example on a high carb day, i eat 45%carbs, 30% fat and 25% protein. But how do i figure out what to change this to for a low carb day?? Do you have a link/post you could direct me to please? It is time for me to ramp this up and turn targets into success.
    You guys rock! xx

    1. Hi Allie: For Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, here are the macro percentage recommendations: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast): Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. Hope this helps!

  88. Hi , You normally have ground turkey or have chicken on hand. What do you do if you are allergic (had allergy testing) to chicken/ turkey ?

    1. Hi Angela: There are links to a couple of macro calculators in this post, and they can help you figure out your macros. πŸ™‚

  89. Great info Heidi! I’ve recently started eating IIFYM. I’m curious with your carbs being so high if u are dieting? I know you just competed and wow 250 for a low day is Uh-mazing!!! Did u just slowly start to increase your carbs? I’m trying to lose/tighten up now. I’ve competed before and I’m over the bro diet??. I’m currently taking 160 p, 149 c, and 36 f, 40, 5’6″ and 143 lb’s. I need more fats in my life! I’ll definitely look into the calculator u posted.


    1. I also wondered if this was a training day? And if so what was the pre and post meal? I mentioned my macros above and those were determined from another website. Using the calculator u provided my macros are 144g p, 207 g c, and 52g f with the lose 10% and higher protein option. I’d like this more, but not not how to transition into that without gaining fat from the increase in fats and carbs. I am trying to lean out and gain lean muscle.

    2. And one more question. Are the calories calculated the TDEE with any decrease for weight loss?

  90. Hi Heidi, when entering my info in both macro calculators suggested, the numbers are significantly different. Why would there be such a large difference and how do you know which one to follow for the best results?

    1. Hi Lorrena: Each calculator can come up with a slightly different result based on how each is set up and how your info/goals are input. I’d go into each and maybe tweak what you input and see if maybe that’s what’s causing the differences.

  91. Love the visual breakdown and sharing the realistic food items you enjoy! I’ve been eating clean and feeling great for over a year but have friends that have had amazing results from carb cycling and macro counting that I have not been able to achieve. It’s a bit mind blowing after being so so strict with my diet-to think I could still be fit and healthy by eating dream bars and pasta and rice daily-when kept in proportion and check of course! Thanks for making things simple and fun to follow. I could get use to sweets and pastas ? I might give it a try if I can get over my fear of too much food.

  92. Great post, thanks SO much! I really liked the visuals. Can you expand on carb cycling while counting macros? More specifically, how do you what to change your macros to on high carb vs low carb days? Thanks!!

    1. Hi CJ: If you’re carb cycling to lose weight, these numbers will be different than carb cycling for different goals, so there’s really not a one-size-fits-all answer to your question. If you’re following any of Chris and Heidi’s carb cycles, here are the recommended percentages: Easy, Classic, Fit, and Turbo Cycles: High Carb Meal (including EVERY breakfast):
      Protein: 40%, Carbs: 40%, Fats: 20%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carbs: 20%, Fats: 40%. Extreme Cycle: Breakfast (EVERY day): Protein: 30%, Carb: 40%, Fat: 30%, High Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 50%, Fat: 10%, Low Carb Meal: Protein: 40%, Carb: 10%, Fat: 50%. If your goals are not to lose weight or if you’re following a different plan, then it would be best to have a macro coach help you figure out what will work best for you. Hope that helps!

  93. That was so great to read. I need to figure out what my carb, fats and protein numbers should be before I do this!! And when to have a high carb vs a low carb and what the two different numbers for those days would be:) thanks
    Ps. If you want to help me out I would love it lol

  94. Heidi,

    I love this article! Currently I am 413 pounds and my biggest road block to success is trying to over complicated nutrition and your approach gives me hope. My favorite part was the peanut butter eggo waffles with maple syrup. It was helpful to see how you created space for them in your plan.

    Recently, I joined your Powell Transformation site and I plan to follow the Turbo Cycle. My only frustrations with the site are that it’s set up for a Classic cycle, so I have to manually adjust all the days, and that all the meals are a little elaborate. Don’t get me wrong, good taste takes effort, but for snacks I would love more simple ideas like your yogurt granola snack.

    I get overwhelmed with meal planning and any simple solutions you could offer would be extremely helpful.

    Thank you again for this article. You have a gift with making food and fitness sound fun!

    1. Hi Krystal: Your first step is to use one of the macro calculators in the post to help you figure out what your macros may be. Good luck!

  95. Hi Heidi,

    Just curious how many carbs do you eat on a high carb day? Also, when you were gaining muscle recently (I assume you still are but when you made that huge progress from those progress shots on Instagram) what were your macros then? Your help is greatly appreciated!!

    1. Hi Charlene: I don’t have Heidi’s exact macros breakdown, what works for one person can be very different than what works for another. Your correct macro percentages are based off your body composition and goals, and so it can be very helpful to work with a macro coach who can help you get started and then tweak things as you go. We wish you the best!

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