Trying to balance work, family, health, fitness and self-care is no small order. On top of that, finding a healthy eating plan that works for you isn't easy, especially when there are so many different diets to choose from. To help give you some ideas and inspiration, I figured I would share what I eat in a day. I do want to stress that this is just one sample day, my diet changes depending on my current fitness goals and how my body is feeling. Also, this meal plan works for me, but it may not work for you and probably is not what's best for you. To find a diet that works for you, meet with a professional, talk about your goals and together come up with a plan that is right for you.
Every evening, I plan out what I am going to eat the next day. I use the My Fitness Pal app and layout each meal. Currently, my fitness goals are to lose 2% more body fat and build 4 lbs. of lean muscle; as well as, to jump start my metabolism that has taken a hit because of a prolonged low caloric diet. My daily goals are to stay under 1500 calories, consume at least 120 grams of protein and to a hit a 35%/35%/30% macro split for carbohydrates, protein and fat. I obviously eat a gluten-free diet, but I am also allergic to apples and intolerant to eggs. I also try to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, limit my sugar intake and stay away from highly processed foods.
At 6:30am I wake up, get ready to workout and eat my pre-workout meal. Most of the time my pre-workout is a high protein Icelandic Skyr yogurt. I love this Icelandic Provisions brand, especially the key lime flavor. It has only 140 calories, over 15 grams of protein and a fantastic flavor and texture. If for some reason I am out of the Skyr yogurt, I will skip my pre-workout meal and do some fasted cardio, but not often.
After my morning workout, I make breakfast for the boys and then myself. Without being able to eat eggs anymore, I have found it hard to stay under 300 calories and hit at least 15 grams of protein. So, my go-to breakfast has been gluten, nitrate and preservative free turkey or chicken sausage sauteed with some roasted sweet potatoes and Trader Joe's chili onion crunch. It's warm, filling and packs a little heat for a satisfying, well-rounded meal.
There is about 4 hours between breakfast and lunch, so around 11:00am I like to eat a small snack. Today, it was a cup of blueberries and a few raspberries I had leftover. Other snacks I might have are a rice cake with peanut butter and banana, orange slices, a handful of pistachios or a couple slices of deli meat. It depends on how my macros are looking for the day. I use the snack to help even out the percentages. I might also have some kombucha at this time to help with digestion and improve gut health.
1:00pm is lunchtime and pretty much every day I have some variation of this salad. Starts with whatever greens I have on hand, sometimes spinach, arugula, spring mix or even broccoli or cabbage slaw, topped with seeds or nuts, dried fruit, roasted veggies, crumbly cheese and chicken, then all tossed with balsamic or another type of vinaigrette. Helps me get enough fiber, iron, veggies and protein. There is just something about a crisp fresh salad that makes your body feel good and nourished.
Most days I strength train and do cardio in the morning and then in the early evenings, I take or teach martial arts classes. Around 4:30pm, I use my afternoon snack as a second pre-workout meal and make a protein shake. My usual is this chocolate peanut butter version, but I also really like strawberry banana and mixed berry. The main source of protein in the shake is whey powder, however, I also include collagen peptides for joint flexibility and that adds extra protein as well.
7:00pm is dinner time, as well as, my final post-workout meal. This meal can vary from homemade pizza, to another salad, to grilled fish, or anything in between. This particular day I had leftover air fried chicken cutlets and made my gluten-free chicken parmesan from this recipe here. Paired it with a simple side salad of spring mix greens, shaved parmesan cheese and a homemade lemon vinaigrette.
I love chocolate. It's my downfall every single time. I cannot pass up having a chocolaty treat to finish my day. After dinner, I normally have some sort of sweet dessert like a mochi ice cream, French macaron, piece of dark chocolate, handful of mini marshmallows or like today, a few of the Trader Joe's gluten-free brownie crisps. I look forward all day to my sweet treat and opt for a small portion of something high quality over a large amount of something sub-par.
So, that is what I eat in a day. All summed up right there. For this particular day, we are still practicing social-isolation, but it really is not much different than any other day food wise. I have had to compromise hitting my protein goal because of lack of fresh food, pantry staples are mostly carbs, so when the fridge is running low, we break out the lentil pasta and rice meals. But besides that, I have been able to keep a pretty decent meal plan going during this time.
I hope this inspires you to try something new or add some different items to your own meal plan. Again, everyone is different and this works for me. But, if you want to get a plan tailored specifically for you, reach out to a professional, review your goals and together, map out a plan just for you.
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