By default, MacroFactor’s coaching processes don’t try to force you to “catch up” if you don’t gain or lose weight at your desired rate when pursuing a goal. For instance, if you have a goal of losing a pound per week, but you’ve only lost 5 pounds after 10 weeks (a common occurrence – perfect dietary adherence isn’t typical, and it’s rarely required), MacroFactor won’t slash your Calories to try to force you to lose 2 pounds per week to “catch up” to your target rate of weight loss.
For most people, most of the time, this type of system produces better outcomes. If you were having some difficulty consistently losing a pound per week, slashing your intake targets further typically isn’t going to be a recipe for success. It’ll just make the diet even harder to stick to, and thus sap motivation. Beyond that, recommending more and more aggressive rates of weight loss if you “fall behind schedule” is likely to just increase losses in lean mass if you do stick to those recommendations, leaving you with worse body composition outcomes after you lose the amount of weight you intended to lose. The same is true in reverse: If MacroFactor recommended more and more aggressive rates of weight gain if you “fell behind schedule” when pursuing a weight gain goal, those increased rates of weight gain would just tend to result in increased fat gain.
So, when you set a goal in MacroFactor, you’re setting a goal that MacroFactor honors week by week. If you’re aiming to lose a pound per week, MacroFactor will aim to provide you with intake targets consistent with losing a pound per week. If you lose two pounds this week, your intake targets next week will still be consistent with losing a pound per week. If you gain two pounds this week, your intake targets next week will still be consistent with losing a pound per week.
However, despite the fact that this approach produces better results in the long run for most people, most of the time, some people have weight-related goals that must be accomplished on a strict timeline. For example, if you compete in a sport with weight classes, you might need to be under 83kg on March 20th, come hell or high water. If it takes you an extra 6 weeks to lose the weight you’re trying to lose, you’re out of luck – you might not be able to compete at all, or you might have to compete in a weight class you’re unprepared for.
If this describes you, there’s a simple solution in MacroFactor: Just adjust your goal rate of weight gain or loss each week before you do your weekly check-in:
Go to the “Strategy” tab
Tap “Edit Goal”
Adjust your target rate of weight gain or loss so that you “ETA” stays at, or slightly before, the deadline for the goal you need to accomplish
If you forget to adjust your goal rate before you check in, no worries! You can still adjust it after you check in. You’ll just need to create a new program after adjusting your goal rate so that your macro program for the week reflects your new target rate of weight gain or loss. Creating a new program effectively functions like a check-in would, and it should take no more than a minute or two.
Just follow those simple steps, and MacroFactor will be able to guide you in the pursuit of a weight-related goal that has a tight timeline or firm deadline.