More meal plans

Everyone is different. Some can just eat healthy and go by feel. They are lucky, they tend not to overeat or under eat, they are just right. Others can have a difficult time trying to stay on track. They are disorganized and can’t get into a good rhythm with their diet. So for those who are in this group you gotta get it together and have a plan.

The first step to all of this madness is to buy a food scale. You don’t need one for $100, a simple digital one up to 500grams will do just fine. The second thing I recommend is to get with the metric system. Start using grams and millilitres and ditch the ounces. Weighing out 3.66oz is a pain. Weighing out 100g? Easy.

After that, you need to keep a food log. You can do it the old fashion way of pen and paper, or use a online service such as www.fitday.com or www.dailyburn.com. This way you can remember what you have eaten over the course of the day. Believe me, after a few weeks of dieting all the food blends together! By recording all your meals, you will also be able to modify them easier once you hit a plateau. You will be able to see what you have been doing and what you need to change. In saying that, you are just here to get a meal plan, so you could just print this off and cross each meal out as you eat it!

All of these plans have 2-300g protein which is a great amount for all of your bodybuilding needs. If you are cutting, this amount will help you lose fat, and preserve muscle. It is also a sufficient amount of protein to gain muscle in a bulking phase! What one person may gain on, another may lose on…

All of these plans also have moderate carb/fat. This is for a number of reasons, but mainly because they are both delicious, and removing either one completely is a pain and may just lead to binging. If you want a VLC(VeryLowCarb) Diet, check out The Palumbo Diet. But for those that are not induced with carb-phobia(The last one hits 400Carbs!)…enjoy!

Note: All of the macros were taken from Calorieking.com. Brands will differ, just make sure you check the Nutrition Info before you start eating! Sometimes the same food product will have completely different macros!

 

2000 Calorie Diet (Calories/Fat/Carbohydrate/Protein):

 

Meal 1: 30g Oatmeal
1 scoop protein powder
Total: (~230/5/25/30)
Meal 2: 100g Banana
227g Fat Free Greek Yogurt
Total: (~230/0/30/20)
Meal 3: 141g Tuna(1 can)
2 slices Whole Wheat bread
10g Mayonnaise
Total: (~390/10/40/30)
Meal 4: 200g Chicken Breast
125g Sweet potato
Green Veggies
Total: (~360/5/20/45)
Meal 5: 200g Chicken Breast
125g Sweet potato
Green Veggies
Total: (~360/5/20/45)
Meal 6: 200g Apple
34g Peanut Butter
Total: (~300/20/35/10)
Meal 7: 2 String Cheese
Total: (~160/10/0/15)
Total: (~1950/55/170/195)

 

3000 Calorie Diet (Calories/Fat/Carbohydrate/Protein):

Meal 1: 60g Oatmeal
1 scoop protein powder
Total:  (~230/5/45/35)
Meal 2: 100g Banana
250g Pineapple
227g Fat Free Greek Yogurt
Total: (~355/0/60/20)
Meal 3: 141g Tuna(1 can)
2 slices Whole Wheat bread
10g Mayonnaise
Total: (~390/10/40/30)
Meal 4: 200g Chicken Breast
200g Sweet potato
Green Veggies
Total: (~420/5/35/45)
Meal 5: 200g Chicken Breast
200g Sweet potato
Green Veggies
Total: (~420/5/35/45)
Meal 6: 200g Apple
50g Peanut Butter
Total: (~400/25/40/15)
Meal 7: 2 String Cheese
250g Pineapple
Total: (~285/10/30/15)
Meal 8: 5 Whole Eggs
40g Shredded Cheese
Total: (~490/35/0/40)
Total: (~2990/95/285/245)

4000 Calorie Diet (Calories/Fat/Carbohydrate/Protein):

 

Meal 1: 60g Oatmeal
1 scoop protein powder
Total: (~230/5/45/35)
Meal 2: 100g Banana
250g Pineapple
227g Fat Free Greek Yogurt
Total: (~355/0/60/20)
Meal: 3 200g Whole Wheat Pasta
200g Premade Vodka Sauce
Total: (~455/5/80/5)
Meal 4: 141g Tuna(1 can)
2 slices Whole Wheat bread
10g Mayonnaise
Total: (~390/10/40/30)
Meal 5: 200g Chicken Breast
200g Sweet potato
Green Veggies
Total: (~420/5/35/45)
Meal 6: 250mL Whole milk
50g Peanut Butter
100g Banana
Total: (~550/35/45/20)
Meal 7: 200g Chicken Breast
200g Sweet potato
Green Veggies
Total: (~420/5/35/45)
Meal 8: 200g Apple
50g Peanut Butter
Total: (~400/25/40/15)
Meal 9: 2 String Cheese
250g Pineapple
Total: (~285/10/30/15)
Meal 10: 5 Whole Eggs
40g Shredded Cheese
Total: (~490/35/0/40)
Total: (~3995/135/410/270)

 

These plans are broken into meals, but that is simply to make the lists easier. You can eat these meal by meal, a couple meals combined together, or all at once. In the end of the day it will all be the same(but meal timing is another post….). Just make sure you eat everything on your meal plan. A missed meal is almost the same as a cheat meal! If it is in your diet, you need it!

Eating on a budget/ meal plan

Complaints from my wife about how much I eat have always been kind of a joke around the home but since we had our daughter and I am the only one working right now those jokes have become a little more serious. I have been cutting back a little here and there on somethings but not to any serious degree but I already am missing a few of my favorites.  So when she asked me what I wanted for Christmas I replied “food”! And no I wasn’t joking!.

But I decided since I can be a little more frugal I should see just how well I can do on just $50 bucks a week. This was gonna take some careful planning and research and I would have to hunt for the best bargains in town.

I was pretty successful take a look at what I came up with.

– Approx. 10 1/2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs
– Approx. 10 1/2 pounds of potatoes
– 14 crowns of broccoli
– 1 tube of quick oats
– 7 dozen eggs
– 7 bananas

Cooked and prepared, this quantity of food was used to construct the following daily diet (Note: protein from incomplete sources not included in amounts):
Meal 1: 6 large whole eggs, 1 cup (uncooked measurement) of quick oats, 1/2 banana
Meal 2: 8 oz (cooked weight) chicken thighs, 8 oz baked potato, 1 cup steamed broccoli
Meal 3: 8 oz (cooked weight) chicken thighs, 8 oz baked potato, 1 cup steamed broccoli
Meal 4: 6 large whole eggs, 1 cup (uncooked measurement) of quick oats, 1/2 banana

Here is the approximate macronutrient breakdown for those 4 meals:
Meal 1: Carb-53g / Protein-36g / Fat-30g / Calories-420
Meal 2: Carb-46g / Protein-56g / Fat-24g / Calories-730
Meal 3: Carb-46g / Protein-56g / Fat-24g / Calories-730
Meal 4: Carb-53g / Protein-36g / Fat-30g / Calories-420
Total: Carb-198g / Protein-184g / Fat-108 / Calories -2300

Adding Two Shakes
To be fair, the $50 I spent was enough to purchase the food listed above in a quantity that allowed for 7 days worth of the above meals. And the food listed above is very close to what I was eating in my off season prior to turning pro. However, in addition to the whole food listed above, it was standard for me to have two protein shakes each day to which I added some type of fat – typically peanut butter. Each of my shakes would consist of three scoops of whey protein isolate, 2 tbsp natural peanut butter and 1/2 cup oats.

Here is what the shakes would look like:
Shake 1: 3 Scoop protein powder, 2 tbsp natural peanut butter, 1/2 cup oats
Shake 2: 3 Scoops  protein powder, 2 tbsp natural peanut butter, 1/2 cup oats

And the macro-nutrient breakdown for those shakes:
Shake 1: Carb-30g / Protein-63g / Fat-16g / Calories-614
Shake 2: Carb-30g / Protein-63g / Fat-16g / Calories-614

Two Shakes Vs Two Extra Meals
Now here is some food for thought (pun intended). The average cost per meal from the diet constructed using $50 is $1.79. The average meal contains 49g of carbohydrates, 46g of protein and 27g of fat. That’s an almost perfectly even split of calories derived from each macro-nutrient. In the event I decided to do 6 whole food meals per day using the same foods purchased for $50, the cost per week would rise to $75 per week.

Now, I can certainly appreciate the desire for some variety and protein shakes are convenient, taste good and offer a different amino profile than what is already in the diet. If you are looking to keep the cost down I figure you can add 2 shakes per day using a 5lb economy whey protein as the protein source. In this case, you can find a 5lb bag of protein for $48.95 (shipping can be anything from free to $5 or more).

In this instance, I’m going to assume you’re thrifty enough to shop around for free shipping. $48.95 will deliver 77 scoops of protein. That would be 64 cents per scoop. A good fat source to add to the shake would be extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). I am sitting here looking at a 750ml bottle of excellent quality olive oil that I purchased for $9. It contains (50) 1 tbsp servings (works out to 18 cents per tbsp). And as for oats, a large tube of oats can be had as low as $3.19 and contains (30) 1/2 cup servings.

Shakes comprised of the above ingredients would contain:
Shake 1: 3 scoops protein powder 1/2 cup oats, 1 tbsp olive oil
Shake 2: 3 scoops protein powder 1/2 cup oats, 1 tbsp olive oil

And the macronutrient breakdown would look like this:
Shake 1: Carbs-33g / Protein-66g / Fat-22g / Calories-630
Shake 2: Carbs-33g / Protein-66g / Fat-22g / Calories-630

The cost per protein shake would be $2.25; that would translate to an extra $4.50 per day or $31.50 for the week — $6.50 more than going all whole food. But for this extra amount, I would get an additional 40g of protein per day while sparing 10g of fat and 32g of carbs for the day. And of course, it’s always nice to taste something different. I can be tight but I didn’t personally have any trouble parting with the extra $6.50 for the week to get a little variety in my life.

So, if I wanted to add the two protein shakes to the diet, I’d spend a total of $81.50 for the week. If I chose to stick with the whole foods it would cost me $75 for the week. With the shakes, the daily diet would look like this:

Meal 1: 6 large whole eggs, 1 cup (uncooked measurement) of quick oats, 1/2 banana
Meal 2: 8 oz (cooked weight) chicken thighs, 8 oz baked potato, 1 cup steamed broccoli
Meal 3: 8 oz (cooked weight) chicken thighs, 8 oz baked potato, 1 cup steamed broccoli
Meal 4: 6 large whole eggs, 1 cup (uncooked measurement) of quick oats, 1/2 banana
Shake 1: 3 scoops protein powder 1/2 cup oats, 1 tbsp olive oil
Shake 2: 3 scoops protein powder 1/2 cup oats, 1 tbsp olive oil

And the macros:
Meal 1: Carb-53g / Protein-36g / Fat-30g / Calories-420
Meal 2: Carb-46g / Protein-56g / Fat-24g / Calories-730
Meal 3: Carb-46g / Protein-56g / Fat-24g / Calories-730
Meal 4: Carb- 53g / Protein- 36g / Fat- 30g / Calories-420
Shake 1: Carbs-33g / Protein-66g / Fat-22g / Calories-630
Shake 2: Carbs-33g / Protein-66g / Fat-22g / Calories-630
Total: Carbs-264g / Protein-316g / Fat-152g / Calories-3560

How I Prepared The Meals
Ok, for those wondering, here are few answers to questions you’ll probably ask. I just seasoned the chicken thighs with salt & pepper and grilled them. Any store bought seasoning can do. The broccoli, I just steamed those plain. The eggs, no seasoning at all, just a little olive oil. The potatoes, I just threw those in the microwave without any seasonings (but a little salt always works). Had I been prepping a bunch, I’d have baked them. Using a microwave allows for quick and easy preparation without adding any added fats like oil (frying). Boiling also works.

If you or anyone you know can put together a solid diet that complete for $81.50 a week I’ll be damn impressed. Of course the actual diet would depend on your specific needs. Remember, everyone has different calorie requirements ¬- even a small guy might have to eat twice as much. There is not such thing as a single, complete diet. Complete means something different for everyone. For you, this could work. For someone else, this could be the base. Anyway, the purpose of this project and spending only $50 was to show you that you could put together a good meal plan for the week that doesn’t break the bank.

cropped-lhxc_250-fw.png

3800 Calorie Diet for bulking.

This is a diet plan where you separate your carbs from your fats. The theory behind doing this is to train or trick your body into burning fat for energy. The idea is that if you eat fats and carbs together your body will burn the carbs and store the fat.  Some people swear by this method and other like myself have had mixed results.

This diet plan was customized for a 19 yr old male with a Basil Metabolic Rate that calls for 3267 Calories per day just to maintain current weight.  The best approach is to adjust your calories in 200 calorie increments depending on your goal (weight loss or weight gain) this guy is young and can afford to bulk faster so he chose to go with a 500 calorie surplus.

To find your BMR you can use this handy calculator http://www.muscleandstrength.com/tools/bmr-and-daily-calorie-calculator.html

19 Years Old/5 ft 9 “/194 lb
BMR (66+1205+900-129)= 2042x 1.6 = 3267cal for maintenance +500 for gain = 3800 cals
nutritiondata.self.com
1 cal = 4.2kj
1g Carb = 4cal/16kj
1g Pro = 4cal/17kj
1g Fat = 9cal/37kj
100gm Chicken = 25g Protein
100gm Beef = 30g Protein
1 Avocado = 30g Fat (200gm size)
1 cup Oats = 100g Carb
1 cup Rice (Cooked) = 45g Carb
1 Egg White = 4g Protein (8 = 32g)
1 Scoop WPI = 25g Protein

Meal 1: Pro/Carb  6:30am
8 Egg Whites/2 Yolks, 1 cup oatmeal ***8211; (Banana on way to work)
35g Pro, 100g Carbs, 4g Fat

Meal 2: Pro/Fat  9:30am
200g Chicken Breast, Whole Avocado
50g Protein, 30g Fat

Meal 3: Pro/Carb 12:00am
200g Chicken Breast, 1 and a half cup Brown Rice, Veggies (Carrot/Broco)
50g Protein, 70g Carb

Meal 4: Pro/Carb 4:00pm (PRE WORKOUT MEAL)
2 Cans of Tuna, 1 cups oatmeal OR 2 cups brown rice + 5g Creatine (More carbs ok)
30g Protein, 100g Carb

Workout (5:00pm to 6:00pm)

Meal 5: PWO Nutrition 6:00pm
2 Scoops Whey Protein / 50g of Dextrose
50g Protein, 50g Carb

Meal 6: PPWO 7:00pm
200gm Steak (pref lean), 1 cup Brown Rice
60g Protein, 45g carbs

Meal 7: Pro/Fat 8:30pm
200gm of Steak/Chicken or 8 Eggs, 2 Tbsp Natural Peanut Butter OR Avocado
60/50/30g Protein, 30g fat

Meal 8: Pro/Fat (Before Bed) 10:00pm
2 Scoops of Whey Protein, 2 tbsp of Natural Peanut Butter OR Avocado
50g Protein, 30g fat

That turns into approximately 385 grams protein, 365 grams Carbs, and 95 grams of fat. This is roughly 3855 calories which is 500 above caloric surplus.

This is a pretty good plan here and only needs to be tweaked slightly. My advice was to lower his protein to 280 and up his carbs to 420.. and add fats to make up for the rest.

2000 Calorie Meal Plan

Another convenient meal plan brought to you by Life Hardcore! Use this as a template and modify as you wish. If you need more calories just increase servings or add in another of your favorite foods. Personally I wouldn’t eat the tuna (trying to avoid mercury & radiation & PCB’s) but would rather go for some sardines (lesser of 2 evils) or some organic chicken.

Name – Amount Unit- Calories -Fat (g) Carbs (g) Prot (g)
9:30-10 AM
Whole Scrammbled Egg 2 Whole egg  192  14  2  14
Oatmeal, cooked, regular 1 cup, cooked  145  2  25  6
Egg white scrammbled 5 egg white  85  0  1   18
Total    422   16   28   38

12 PM
Can Albacore Tuna 5oz 1 can    180    4.2   0    26
Extra Virg Oliv Oil 1 tbls              119   13.5   0    0
Hard boiled egg white 3 egg white 48    0    1   11
347    17.7    1       37

Training 1 PM
Post workout shake 2 PM
Carb powder 1.25 scoop 80 0 21
Protein powder 1 scoop 140 1 2 30
220 1 23 30

4:30 PM
Post workout meal
Grilled Chicken Breast 6 oz 315 12 0 51
Extra Virg Oliv Oil 1 tbls 1 19 13.5 0 0
Frozen (steamed) peas 1 cup 111 0.5 20 8
545 26 20 59
7:30 PM
Almonds (25 total) 1 fouth cup 1 70 15 5 7
Dannon vanila greek yogurt 1 Cup 240 0 38 24
410 15 43 31
10:30 – 12 PM Just before bed meal
Cottage Cheese 1 cup 163 2.3 6 28

2000 Calorie a day diet

Here is a meal plan laid out for ya. I put this together quickly for a friend of mine who was frustrated with her weight. I sat down with her and we looked up foods and she picked out what she liked and it was easy enough. We figure that she needs about 2000 calories a day to lose weight in the most healthy manner possible.

If you need more calories than 2000 a day you can tweak what we have here. If I’m bulking I would simply double what you see here.

The same food every day you say? Sure why not! Keeps things as simple as can be. Especially if you’re as busy as my friend is. One of her problems was that she doesn’t have time to shop for food and then take it home and prepare it. Because of this she would eat out often, catching a bite on the go. Although she would only eat at healthier place she was unable to accurately determine her calorie intake.

Counting calories is a pain in the ass and that’s why most of us don’t do it. We talked and she was not ready for that. So I asked her what her goal was. She said she wanted to lose 10 pounds. So I told her to focus on that and not to worry about the variety of food initially.

So here’s the plan. She goes to the store and buys what she needs for the week. Things like chicken she can buy extra and freeze and water can be stored up. So all she has to do is go back once a week for her veggies. Steamed veggies are the best way to go if your on a time crunch. They are the perfect “fire and forget” way of cooking. Just don’t forget too long cause they will turn to mush. But while they are steaming away you can do something else like cook your chicken and maybe one load of wash, chores gotta get done right!

I told her to start incorporating new items into the menu asap or at least as soon as she has had time to think about it. She can swap chicken for salmon or steak or tofu. Swapping out veggies is easy enough, Kale for spinach or make a nice salad.

Here’s the not so great news about this diet. It is very dependent on getting half the calories from the 3 protein shakes you see in the list. Normally you don’t want to rely so heavily on protein shakes for that large a portion of your daily diet. Powdered protein shakes are inferior to real food. But this is what my friend wanted for now. She is too busy to do anything else, such is the reality of living in this crazy world where we run ourselves so ragged that we don;t have time to eat!  She is doing the hardcore thing and facing this reality with positivity and a plan!

I just wanted to share this with my readers to show that no matter what you can always make something work your way even if it’s not optimal. It’s a good start that you want, one that you can always improve on and build off of.

M-Friday

1 Cup steamed Broccoli
1 Cup steamed Kale
1/2 Cup blueberries
1TB pomegranate concentrated
4 cups green tea with stevia
12oz chicken breast grilled 1TB olive oil
2 Whey protein shakes
1 greek yogurt Plain
1 shake with 3TB of flaxseed
Lots of water
Good Multi vitamin
If you are watching your cholesterol then
Red Rice Yeast for cholesterol
Vitamin D (most of us are deficient, have your Dr. check it out for you)

Comes out to about 2050 Calories