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IIFYM

SideSteelSideSteel Posts: 11,079Member Member Posts: 11,079Member Member
Probably one of the most amazing but misunderstood concepts circulating among bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts in general, is IIFYM.

What started as a phrase from a user named Erik Stevens on bodybuilding.com, quickly caught on and proceeded to cause an uproar of internet stupidity everywhere.


IIFYM stands for "If It Fits Your Macros" and it was originally phrased on the bb.com forums as a fast way to respond to the overwhelming number of questions about whether or not someone could eat a particular food item without having to worry about getting fat, or not gaining muscle, or (insert other negative effect).

Here are some examples of the questions that would come up: "Hey can I eat fruit on a cut?" "Hey is it okay for me to have oatmeal?" "Hey I had a cookie but I still stayed at my calorie and macro goals, is that okay or will that hurt my progress?" (The answer being "Yes, you can eat it if it fits your macros").

IIFYM literally means to hit your calorie and macronutrient targets by end of day choosing foods that you enjoy eating. The concept is completely bastardized because idiots across the internet continually come up with scenarios that don't exist in real life, to try and blow a hole in the idea that IIFYM is a sound practice.

Here are some examples of the strawmen arguments that show up in an attempt to discredit IIFYM: "You're telling me you can just eat straight table sugar for your carbs, and drink olive oil for your fat, and use whey protein and you'll have a good physique?". "Hey have fun eating pizza and donuts all day". "Brb just eating cake, IIFYM".

Good luck with that. (You'll note that you typically can't hit your macros eating chips and donuts all day and if you CAN, your macros are probably horsesh*t to begin with and you've then got bigger problems. The point here is that IIFYM most certainly isn't a disregard for health or nutrient sufficiency, but people will often create and knock down that strawman).

What IIFYM is not:

1) It is not eating cake and chips all day.
2) It is not disregarding micronutrients and fiber and general intelligence with regards to food choice.
3) It is not a specific macro setting. There is a website out there that has the IIFYM label that includes a calorie calculation tool and unfortunately several people on MFP believe that doing "IIFYM" means eating those specific macros. This is false.

IIFYM is a philosophy about food selection with the belief that body composition changes are primarily a function of nutrient intake and energy balance rather than a function of individual food sources.


When practicing IIFYM, it is recommended that you choose mostly whole and nutrient dense foods to comprise the majority of your intake. Fresh vegetables, fruits, meats, fish, etc, and at the same time, leaving some room for a discretionary intake. A common and very reasonable recommendation would be about 80/20. That is to say, that if you've got a calorie target of 2500, you'd eat approximately 2000 calories of whole and nutrient dense foods with a calorie bank of 500 to eat whatever you would like while still hitting your calorie and macronutrient targets by end of day .


It's a flexible approach, and it works.

Layne Norton on IIFYM:



See here for an example of how it could be done: http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/925464-fitting-it-in-giggity
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Replies

  • ECA67ECA67 Posts: 834Member Member Posts: 834Member Member
    I love this approach as I hate following a specific diet. I will watch my macros more carefully. Thanks !
  • jacquerdjacquerd Posts: 121Member Member Posts: 121Member Member
    Okay, so how domindetermine what the correct macros are for me?
  • jacquerdjacquerd Posts: 121Member Member Posts: 121Member Member
    Oh....never mind. I see Sara's post. Duh!
  • Sarauk2sfSarauk2sf Posts: 28,493Member Member Posts: 28,493Member Member
    Just realized that I had not tagged this one yet.
  • CrankstrCrankstr Posts: 4,070Member Member Posts: 4,070Member Member
    guess that means i will put back 10 of these 15 cookies...oops
  • willow_rbwillow_rb Posts: 69Member Member Posts: 69Member Member
    Saving thread for future! great explanation.
  • chrisdaveychrisdavey Posts: 9,940Member Member Posts: 9,940Member Member
    Layne Norton's Vlog "clean" vs IIFYM is up. Very interesting :smile:

  • Sarauk2sfSarauk2sf Posts: 28,493Member Member Posts: 28,493Member Member
    Layne Norton's Vlog "clean" vs IIFYM is up. Very interesting :smile:


    I just listened to it - going to add it to the clean eating thread.
  • BabeskeezBabeskeez Posts: 616Member Member Posts: 616Member Member
  • Rayman79Rayman79 Posts: 2,038Member Member Posts: 2,038Member Member
    Nice post. I think people are all too keen to over complicate things, perhaps partly to make themselves seem more elite that they have succeeded, or as an excuse for why they can/have failed. It is such a simple, well balanced concept.

    btw, I enjoy acronyms.

    IIFYM FTW!

    lol

    :bigsmile:
  • mmapagsmmapags Posts: 8,263Member Member Posts: 8,263Member Member
    Nice post. I think people are all too keen to over complicate things, perhaps partly to make themselves seem more elite that they have succeeded, or as an excuse for why they can/have failed. It is such a simple, well balanced concept.

    btw, I enjoy acronyms.

    IIFYM FTW!

    lol

    :bigsmile:

    Tagging to follow.
  • danasingsdanasings Posts: 8,268Member Member Posts: 8,268Member Member
    Nice post. I think people are all too keen to over complicate things, perhaps partly to make themselves seem more elite that they have succeeded, or as an excuse for why they can/have failed. It is such a simple, well balanced concept.

    btw, I enjoy acronyms.

    IIFYM FTW!

    lol

    :bigsmile:

    Tagging to follow.

    :smile:
  • ladyraven68ladyraven68 Posts: 2,027Member Member Posts: 2,027Member Member
    Layne Norton's Vlog "clean" vs IIFYM is up. Very interesting :smile:


    I just listened to it - going to add it to the clean eating thread.

    I can't open you tube from my phone, but is it worth me copying it to the Help Please thread where the new guy was telling everyine they will fail if they drink even a single soda, eat a single candy bar, or eat ice-cream?
  • Sarauk2sfSarauk2sf Posts: 28,493Member Member Posts: 28,493Member Member
    Layne Norton's Vlog "clean" vs IIFYM is up. Very interesting :smile:


    I just listened to it - going to add it to the clean eating thread.

    I can't open you tube from my phone, but is it worth me copying it to the Help Please thread where the new guy was telling everyine they will fail if they drink even a single soda, eat a single candy bar, or eat ice-cream?

    I would say yes.
  • Sarauk2sfSarauk2sf Posts: 28,493Member Member Posts: 28,493Member Member
    Nice post. I think people are all too keen to over complicate things, perhaps partly to make themselves seem more elite that they have succeeded, or as an excuse for why they can/have failed. It is such a simple, well balanced concept.

    btw, I enjoy acronyms.

    IIFYM FTW!

    lol

    :bigsmile:

    QFT!
  • AnvilHeadAnvilHead Posts: 18,543Member Member Posts: 18,543Member Member
    Article from Tom Venuto's blog about IIFYM:

    http://www.burnthefatblog.com/archives/2012/10/the-if-it-fits-your-macros-iifym-diet.php

    I think he frames it pretty sensibly - even discusses the "excluding the middle" crowd.
  • SideSteelSideSteel Posts: 11,079Member Member Posts: 11,079Member Member
    Article from Tom Venuto's blog about IIFYM:

    http://www.burnthefatblog.com/archives/2012/10/the-if-it-fits-your-macros-iifym-diet.php

    I think he frames it pretty sensibly - even discusses the "excluding the middle" crowd.

    Thanks for posting this.

    In some ways I think Tom is attacking a straw-man but at the same time I don't blame him because with anything, there are people who will take a philosophy and bastardize it into something way sh1ttier than it originally was =)
  • AnvilHeadAnvilHead Posts: 18,543Member Member Posts: 18,543Member Member
    ...In some ways I think Tom is attacking a straw-man but at the same time I don't blame him because with anything, there are people who will take a philosophy and bastardize it into something way sh1ttier than it originally was =)
    Agreed.
  • msliu7911msliu7911 Posts: 641Member Member Posts: 641Member Member
    guess that means i will put back 10 of these 15 cookies...oops

    LOL....

    and tagging this for later.
  • mustgetmuscles1mustgetmuscles1 Posts: 3,366Member Member Posts: 3,366Member Member
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