Why I’m Creating A Macros App


Note: If you hate reading, skip to the bottom for a video of this post.


The most important skill in fitness is learning how to track macronutrients.

Unfortunately, it’s not always clear how many grams of protein, carbs and fats you should be eating for your goal.

Yes, there are currently apps that do this for you. But I don’t like any of them.


Myfitnesspal Sucks

Okay, it doesn’t suck.

But their macro calculator sucks. And so do most apps on the market.

They do silly shit like:

  • use body weight to predict BMR
  • overestimate activity multipliers
  • add back exercise calories (at alarming estimates)
  • assign insufficient protein
  • lack ability to separate training and rest days
  • and most importantly, accost you at every swipe to buy their damn premium version

And if there is one thing in life I hate more than that traitor farm boy Olly, it is constant and abusive up-selling.


“Hi. I’m a backstabber. And I don’t lift.”

Basically, the apps I have seen that are user-friendly have shitty calculators.

And the apps with decent calculators have poor flow or ugly design.

So, I created the app I would want.

An app I can recommend to the 20 people per day emailing how do I calculate my macros?

An app with with equations that I trust.

The primary purpose of this app:

to make my equations available to the public for free, and to do so in a way that is extremely simple and user friendly.

What This App Does:

  1. Calculates your macros using my equations
  2. Separates training/rest day intake
  3. Saves your favorite meals
  4. Tracks your weight, measurements, body fat percent, and progress pictures
  5. Provides helpful informational and motivational bits

What This App Does NOT Do:

  1. It does NOT have a food database
  2. It is NOT a workout tracker

If a food database is important to you, I completely understand. You should use a different app. Given the cost and work necessary for a good food DB, I sadly could not include it in this version.



Is this revolutionary??


In fact, it’s quite the opposite.

The OTR App is a simple tool I created to make my equations public.


Do you guarantee my macros will be accurate?

Absolutely not.

Even the best equations of all time – the Mike Crowley’s and Brian Bonin’s of calculators – are just a starting point.

There are countless factors that could make your intake too high or too low. And it is imperative that you track progress and adjust your intake based on your results.


So why even use equations if they might not be accurate?

Let me tell you a story:

Suzy is an extremely motivated woman who saw an article about  ‘macros’ and decided to give the ‘macros diet’ a shot.

The first calculator she used was horribly inaccurate; it had Suzy eating above maintenance for fat loss.

Understandably, she gave up after two weeks and moved on to some random 300 calorie liquid detox.

What If Suzy Had Decent Starting Numbers?

My equations could have put her close to a good intake for fat loss. This would have allowed her to continue tracking, making progress, and incorporating foods she loves while “dieting.”

So, rather than changing the way Suzy looks at foods indefinitely, the poor equations kept her in a cycle of hopeless, unsustainable crash dieting.

Equations are just estimates, but a good estimate make a huge difference.


Isn’t giving away your equations for free bad for business?

Maybe. But I don’t think so.

Coaching isn’t about assigning macros and sending a client on their way. If that’s all the value I’m adding as a coach, I am the Olly of fitness.

There are countless individual factors that dictate what a client’s intake should be:

  • tendency to binge
  • specific food likes/dislikes
  • activity level and athleticism
  • training type and frequency
  • meal timing for their lifestyle
  • and hundreds of others

Not to mention: setting up training, monitoring progress, working through psychological and lifestyle issues related to food and everything else that goes on in coaching.

This app is simply a scaleable way for me to help people get the best possible initial macros.


What makes “your equations” so special?

Well, first, remember you don’t have to use this free app.

But given your overbearing, demanding skepticism (thank you, by the way, for the positive impact your personality has on the world), these are equations that I have created over the last 10 years based on:

  • My experience coaching thousands of clients
  • Brainstorming with coaches and athletes who are smarter, stronger, and leaner than I am.
  • Tracking my own intake and progress

They are more accurate than a high level estimate, like a bodyweight multiplier. And they are more accurate than any existing app that I have used.

But if you prefer another calculator, that’s cool with me.


Where can I download it??

Unfortunately, the app is not available yet.

It will be released in early October.

No, the state fair did not fit my macros. And yes, I forced my sister to take a side angle pic while I curled dessert in a tank top.

If you would like to be notified when the app is released, sign up for my newsletter.

If you are already signed up, I love you.


Comments for This Entry

  • Mai G

    I would love to use the app but I own an android! May be you should come to the other side and see it has wonders too! Sad I can't have the free app though :/

    September 8, 2015 at 9:43 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Roman

    which microphone you use for the video? I am totally with you, an iphone app is enough ;-) By the way, Tim Cook said that more and more people are switching from Android to Iphone IOS and they even have an app helping you migrate your ancient stuff from android. ;-)

    September 11, 2015 at 1:02 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Liz

    Can't wait to try out your app! I hate the way MFP changes my macros throughout the day and keeps trying to sell me their premium version for such an insane cost. Looking forward to October!

    September 11, 2015 at 1:04 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Larissa Wilhelm

    I'm so excited for this app! Every time I use a FoodTracker thing, I always want a place to store measurements/progress and what my macros should be, especially for training/rest days. Thank you, Mike! I can't wait to download it!

    September 11, 2015 at 1:04 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Eric S

    Haha Mike - your video is awesome. Love your approach. Looking forward to the app. Congrats!

    September 11, 2015 at 1:09 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Tish

    Thanks so much for doing this! This is exactly what I've been looking for and need. Awesome video. You da man, Mike!

    September 11, 2015 at 1:36 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Jamie Vasquez

    Ahh finally!! Can't wait for this app. Calorie counters are great and all, but macros are so much more efficient! Huge fan! Really appreciate this, thank you!

    September 11, 2015 at 2:00 pm | Reply to this comment

  • TOG

    Awesome!!!! Can't wait to test it out! Any thoughts on maybe releasing a workout program enmasse? Thx!!

    September 11, 2015 at 2:36 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Nathan watson

    Android user here I have had an apple and will never go back Samsung all the way. If you change your mind about making it available for android I would definately get it.

    September 11, 2015 at 3:23 pm | Reply to this comment

  • robyn

    Love your stuff Mike. I will totally give your app a try. I am currently using myfitness but i only use it because of the food data base. I did a lot of research on my own to find out what my macros and calories should be. It seems to be working for me but I would definitely be interested in giving your calculations a try. I could see my self using a combination of myfitness and your app to get shit really dialed in. Keep up the good work!

    September 11, 2015 at 3:24 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Joshua Ensley

    Can't wait,thanks for all your help.

    September 11, 2015 at 10:50 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Allison

    THANK YOU for creating this app, making it free and for always writing honest articles with no BS but lots of sarcasm sprinkled in. I thoroughly enjoy reading and learning from your insights!

    September 11, 2015 at 11:03 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Nichole

    I'm super excited for your App to launch! I used to use a Macro app from Fitocracy. I dropped weight with it, but then MFP sucked me in with the food data base and I actually put on weight. The numbers are jacked and just like you said it insists you purchase the super ultra mega version. I love that you "keep it real" in everything you talk about. You don't talk down on people. I will definatly be using your app and most likely be recommending it to my friends.

    September 13, 2015 at 12:00 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Julie

    I'm a newbie at all this and just stumble upon your blog. I am excited to see the new APP, although I am also an android user. I hope it'll be available to us too! Thanks for all the great info! I'll be starting my new food plan in October and it would be great to have all the right macros!

    September 13, 2015 at 5:13 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Rachel Massie

    I am SO excited for your app! I think you went the perfect route with this. We don't really need another food data base we need great initial macros. Well, at least that's what I need! Keep up the excellent work!!

    September 15, 2015 at 7:22 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Jason

    Dude, the smart phone installed base between the two OS's is pretty much neck and neck between Apple and Android in the US. Don't believe the Apple "Hype Beast" crowd. Android App please. Keep killin' it!!!!!! https://gigaom.com/2015/02/04/android-and-ios-are-nearly-tied-for-u-s-smartphone-market-share/

    September 15, 2015 at 10:59 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Carter Good

    Great article Mike! Looking forward to this...

    September 18, 2015 at 8:15 am | Reply to this comment

  • Tiffany

    My workout schedule and diet aren't consistent due to inflammatory bowel disease. However, I'm determined to increase my strength, define my abs and build a better booty. Is this possible and what advice can you provide?

    September 23, 2015 at 8:25 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Sarah

    I am new(ish) to this tracking thing. My sis keeps pushing me to be more consistent, but I hate MFP. I cook (like real food) and I hate searching for all the things I put in real food. I'd rather be cooking and eating. Anyway, I'm very interested in your new easy peasy app, but if it doesn't have a food database, how would I put in what I made/ate? Please forgive my uneducated question.

    September 25, 2015 at 2:51 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Effie Spiegler

    Droid user too! If you can would love the app for droids!

    October 26, 2015 at 1:26 am | Reply to this comment

  • Luis Hereida

    What is the name of the app anyone knows ? BTW mike I love your website

    October 26, 2015 at 11:22 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Firefly

    I am an App Designer myself and wanted to say WELL DONE! loving the concept and ease of use :)

    October 29, 2015 at 5:58 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Lisa

    Have you seen MyMacros App? That's what I use to use. Looking forward to checking yours out.

    December 31, 2015 at 2:09 am | Reply to this comment

  • Shirley

    I clicked on link to download app on apple Iphone 5s and nothing? Can you help me want to use it

    January 16, 2016 at 5:21 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Leslie Desmond

    Mike, My concern is weight and fitness restoration; not weight loss. I am soon 62, quite fit, and have been all my life. I come from a fit family, fortunately. Three years ago, I was fitted with (unbeknownst to me, and to my dentist, who is also happens to also be a friend) an ill-fitting mouth guard to mitigate the effects of grinding my teeth during sleep. After 18 months, my bite was so bad that my jaw slipped off the track and was stuck that way for over a week. My lower jaw slipped over 3/4 of an inch to the right, and my teeth got stuck there. I was traveling for work at the time, and after 2 days I was able to slip a knife between my teeth slip in some wet bread and mashed up carrots and potatoes once a day, that was it, as the pain made further intake prohibitive. Now, 7 month later, my jaw is somewhat in alignment, my weight is still down 8 pounds (I lost 15 right off the bat), my digestion an absolute mess, and I still cannot chew even soft food with confidence. About 3-4 times a week my jaw slips back off the track and that pretty much stops everything. I no longer enjoy food, although I am still a good preparer of a wide range of healthy things, and would eat more if I could. Today I started to juice everything in a nutri-bullet. A new world, only a day into it but I'm not digging it. I did not see another option, and now wish I had taken that step from the beginning. I travel 90% of the time, so it was easy to make the decision to just struggle along instead of pack a vitamix in hand luggage and then re-purchase all the ingredients needed for this lifestyle at every weekly or bi-weekly pit-stop. My fitness, strength, overall chemistry is now a foreign experience after 7 months of compromised intake, so-so nutirition & verypoor digestion. I am unsure how to begin to repair myself, as I am losing weight still and feel weak most of the time. Is there a place to read more about recovery from this situation, after it has been so poorly addressed for this long? Thanks if you or your readers might steer me in a good direction. I have heard about digestive enzymes but when I google that, 2 million sites come up all proc;aiming to have the right and best products and answers. A PhD in this aspect of living life correctly I neither have, or have time to obtain. Much appreciated. Your site and mission are terrific. Carry on! Leslie

    February 28, 2016 at 11:03 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Leslie Desmond

    Oh dear, perhaps my post, above, went to the wrong place. Would someone please forward this to Mike...somehow? Many thanks.

    February 28, 2016 at 11:05 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Yolanda

    You rock! From: An older woman.

    March 8, 2016 at 4:02 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Jessie

    How do you delete or edit meals under the saved meals tab???

    April 12, 2016 at 9:47 am | Reply to this comment

  • William

    Hey Mike, love your OTR Macros app, what I was looking for. To make it perfect: – Tapping on meal title opens the Change name dialog – Add Cancel button to the Save as Meal dialog (no way to cancel out now) – Fix the last meal riding under the Saved Meals / Add Meal buttons – Ability to delete progress photos – Seems the weight data I’ve been entering is lost / not getting saved Consider: – Replace the … button with a Save button and do swipe to delete a meal? – Maybe change the order to F / C / P to match food labels? Good luck! – William

    April 15, 2016 at 5:07 pm | Reply to this comment

  • AV

    Your's is the only app that has been useful for me. Sadly it keeps glitching on me and slowing down my phone. Would love this to work! Also, any updates you could do to your food library would be appreciated.

    July 6, 2016 at 9:01 am | Reply to this comment

  • dave

    I really want to like this but can't. Recommendations. 1. need to simplify way to save and add foods to list. 2. can't figure out how to show training day versus rest. for these reasons- the Yazio app is easier to use - android user galaxy s6.

    July 12, 2016 at 10:15 am | Reply to this comment

  • Jessica Sarlis

    I play roller derby and a lot of us are going into logging our macros. My concern is, as an athlete at 41, I'm afraid my macros are off. Practices are an average of 2 1/2 hours not including bouts which are an extra hour. Can you help me figure out what my true macros should be?

    December 13, 2016 at 12:14 pm | Reply to this comment

  • Adam Patterson

    Hi Mike, Just downloaded your app today and it looks great. It's exactly what I'm looking for, so thank you! Can't wait to get home to build up a library of my recipes and put a week's plan together! One suggestion I'd have would be to have the ability to save a day's diet for duplicating across a number of days? For example a 'typical' Rest Day diet and a 'typical' Training day diet..? The main bulk of my daily food intake will remain the same with probably just my lunch and dinners varying.. The ability to copy a full day's diet would prove a great starting point to simply slot alternative recipe's in. Just a suggestion. Like I said - the app looks great as it is! Thanks again, Adam

    January 19, 2017 at 11:02 am | Reply to this comment

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