Learning how to use MyFitnessPal can be a bit of a challenge, but can be one of the best tools to help you lose weight and reach your fitness goals faster.
What is MyfitnessPal?! It's a powerful food tracking, free app, that lets you add the food you eat and helps you to track your nutrition.
To put things in perspective, tracking your food into MyfitnessPal will be a major inconvenience and it will be hard..
It will take time getting used to and not many people can stay consistent with it...
BUT will the results be worth your time??
Tracking my food diary consistently, every single day, keeps me focused, I feel great knowing my nutrition and makes me aware of whether or not I'm hitting my macros for the day.
Well worth, every single minute of my time invested!
*Inserts an Abs Photo of my physique, to impress you*
Now presuming that you've already downloaded the MyFitnessPal App from the appstore, (it's free don't worry) and have already setup your account, including your goals, body stats etc.
MyfitnessPal will make a recommendation when it comes to your intake and it will bring you to your homepage of your food diary.... Where all the magic happens.
Let's get into it..
ADDING YOUR FOOD
This is the main page of your food diary, you can get here by clicking diary at the bottom of the panel.
This is where you will be doing most of your tracking. As you can see I've already set up my calories to 2100 manually, including my custom macros. I will get to that shortly.
As you start to add food into your diary, you will see your food number of calories going up and remaining calories reducing. You can also hit Add yesterday's breakfast, if you're having the same breakfast, making your life super easy.
2. If you click on add food, within your breakfast, you will go to a search option, where you can find most brands of products by either searching for them or scanning their bar codes.
I prefer to scan bar codes for products that have them, to save time.
You can also see recent foods that I've already added previously, including the servings which I tend to use on a regular basis.
3. Now let's say you want to add Australian Mozzarella to your breakfast, after you click on it, you will get to a screen which tells you the Serving Size and Number of Servings.
The Serving size is the base measurement.
And the Number of servings is how many of the servings you want.
Eg if you're eating 50g of cheese, and the serving size says 25g, just choose 2 for the number of servings to get 50g.
In some cases there will be lots of serving size options, eg per cup, per 100g, per product, etc.
I like to choose per 100g and then for number of servings I would put 1/2 for number of servings if I want to get 50g, or 2 if I want to get 200g, etc.
SCAN EASILY WITH A Bar-code
Scanning with a bar code is quite easy and my preferred way of adding new foods to my diary.
Simply just click on the bar-code symbol at the top right corner after clicking on add food. Then point your camera to the bar code and center it and the product and it's nutritional info will come up on your MyfitnessPal... Voila!
HOW TO ADD MEALS QUICKLY INTO YOUR FOOD DIARY
Instead of clicking add food, if you've already setup your typical breakfast for example, including your regular portion sizes...
Now what you can do, you can click the 3 dots, on the right hand side of the add food and you will see some options there.
I like to save all my meals and give them unique names. Eg Low Carb Breakfast, Oats Breakfast, etc.
Then you can easily add those meals later on and editing portion sizes slightly, if you are eating more/less of a certain food.
You can even copy meals from certain dates, which makes things quite easy as well and makes adding food that little bit faster.
SETTING UP YOUR OWN CALORIES AND MACROS
Now if you already have specific calories or macros (Protein, Carbs & Fats) that you want to hit every day, then you would want to change the recommended MyfitnessPal numbers to your own numbers.
To setup your own macros, based on your goals, you can use a macro calculator to figure out your numbers. Which you should manually change into your MyfitnesPal account.
To Change your Calories & Macros,Go to==>More ==> Goals ==>Calorie & Macro nutrient Goals.
CHECKING YOUR NUTRITION
This is something most people fail to do but is extremely important!
You want to make sure that you spread out your calories and macros evenly, over however many meals you plan to eat per day... Otherwise if you run out of calories too early, you will end up over-eating and going over your numbers.
If I plan to eat 1800 calories in one day and I like to eat 5 times per day, my average meal would be around 350 calories.
Small portions will keep your stomach happy as well and keep you from bloating and help with your digestion.
"I like to make sure to get hungry between meals, which helps me to see the best weight loss results. Usually waiting around 4 hours between meals, helps me to get hungry enough. "
After every meal, scroll down to the bottom of your food diary and keep a close eye on your Nutrition. By clicking Nutrition, you will get to see a breakdown of all your Macros, Nutrients and Calories. As you can see currently I've eaten 50g of Carbs, 34 Fats and 86g Protein.
Totals means what I've currently had and the Goal % is what I'm aiming for by the end of the day.
SHARING YOUR FOOD DIARY
Making your diary view-able by friends, is a great way to let someone else keep you accountable and make sure that you're eating the right foods!
Because we all tend to add those occasional treats (mmhm pizza) and alcohol, even though we've only dieted for just 2 days...
"I believe that accountability is one of the most important elements to reaching your fitness goals, because we tend to lose focus on a day to day basis, making it hard to stay on track "
To share your food diary, Go to ==>More ==> Settings ==>Diary Settings ==>Diary Sharing ==>Friends Only.
REACH YOUR FITNESS GOALS FASTER
Using MyfitnessPal on a day to day basis, has really helped me to burn the fat faster and sculpt my physique PLUS my main reason for using it is because it keeps me focused...
It can be a little hard to get used to initially, but a very rewarding tool to use and definitely worth your time, that's if you're serious about reaching your health and fitness goals.
I just love tracking my food every day...
"Although I used to find tracking my diet extremely annoying, after getting into a great routine, it's a smooth process that I can't live without..."