This week my focus is to start to start cut phase to reduce further body fat (%). I’ve got 6 meals lined up with the first being a shake first thing in the morning. I train first thing so I start the shake before and finish during the workout. Meal 2 would technically be considered my breakfast. I took a break from proats (protein oatmeal) and opted for a more savory route. I found a brand called Field Roast at the grocery store that offers soy-free meat alternatives. Field Roast products are high in protein, which comes from their base ingredient – vital wheat gluten, which is wheat flour removed of starches and left with pure wheat protein. I figured I’d give it a try this week to see how I like it. Although soy is a great protein source for vegans/vegetarians, I do want to manage intake with intention as it’s also a hormone disruptor. I’ve outlined the meal 1-6 spread below like I had shared on IG and FB with instructions/how to’s and additional notes under each. Please forgive me as these aren’t full on recipes. The way I meal prep is that I bulk cook each food group and essentially assemble the way I go. I use basic seasoning (salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder; reserving additional herbs for one-off variations to enhance the plate). I would love to hear if you have any feedback or comments!
Meal Prep Summary
Protein Shake (Vega and Garden of Life) with coconut water and 1/2 banana
No science behind this one. Mix the coconut water and protein powder together in the shaker cup and go! Eat the banana with it.
Vegan Apple and Maple Sausage with sweet potatoes, black beans, edamame, and squash
In a skillet with a little tiny spray of olive oil, I cooked the sausages until crispy – turning them frequently on each side until light golden brown. Set aside.
The sweet potatoes and squash were chopped into small chunks and placed on a sheet pan with a small amount of the olive oil spritz/spray; seasoned with pink Himalayan salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. Into the oven at 350F for 30 minutes, until fully cooked.
Black beans were canned (forgive me, I didn’t cook fresh LOL I’m human with lil time to spare this weekend), but opened and thoroughly rinsed in a strainer and brought to a quick boil in a small pan. Boiled for just a few minutes, strained, and seasoned with salt and pepper.
Edamame was not further cooked or prepared; purchased frozen and defrosted.
All items cooked separately and then assembled into the containers.
Half sandwich (vegan deli slices [smoked tomato/wild mushroom/lentil sage] on Ezekial bread with mustard and romaine lettuce), with green beans, mushroom, and cannellini/red kidney bean salad.
The sandwich was your basic sandwich nothing special in the preparation of that, except that I put the mustard in the center of the sandwich and not on the bread side to avoid the bread getting soggy in the meal prep for later in the week.
The green beans were blanched in a pan with water for 5 minutes once brought to a boil; I prefer them on the crispier side. Once cooked, strained and seasoned with salt and pepper.
The cannellini and red kidney beans were rinsed thoroughly and cooked in a pan with small spritz of olive along with the hemp seeds. Seasoning were salt, pepper, garlic power, and onion powder.
Vegan marinara over red lentil pasta and broccoli
Light Life Vegan Crumbles were opened up in a pan and broken up with a spoon. Added a jar of marinara and allow to come up to a small bubble, reduce heat and cook for 15 minutes.
Red lentil pasta was boiled for 8 minutes; strained and cooled quickly under cold water.
Broccoli was blanched over a pan of hot water for 5 minutes (covered) once the water came to a boil.
All items cooked separately and assembled into the meal prep container.
Tofu and vegetable sautee (onion, green bell pepper, mushroom, sweet potato) with asparagus spears
In a pan, small tablespoon of olive oil used to sautee a small sliced onion, 1 small pepper sliced, and 3 cloves of garlic. Added 2 containers of extra firm tofu cubed and 1 cup of sliced mushrooms. Seasoned with salt, pepper, and dill. Cooked until onions and peppers were translucent. I added cooked sweet potato after the fact to the dish.
Asparagus was cooked separately on a sheet pan with a small spritz of olive oil spray in a 350F oven for 15-20 min (don’t overcook or they end up soggy in meal prep; so timing will depend on how thick the spears are). Seasoned with salt and pepper.
All items assembled in meal prep containers.
Vegan Fieldburger over a bed of cauliflower rice and spinach, with brussel sprouts, grape tomato, and broccoli (avocado not shown)
The burger was seared in a pan with a small spritz of olive oil spray for 1 min each side. The remaining vegetables assembled in the container raw as it will be a salad. The cauliflower crumbles/rice also raw.
When I'm meal planning, the first step that I take is I build out what I'm going to eat in the week ahead. Making these decisions in advance keeps me on track for my goals and saves me headaches come time during the work week when I need to figure out what to eat.
I do this by programming it into MyFitnessPal. I can conveniently create a shopping list from it, which is super helpful. I can also ensure that the food I'm meal planning is setup in a way to ensure I'm meeting all the major requirements, such as ensuring I'm eating enough, I'm eating good quality food, I have enough protein, and essentially whatever my food goals are.
I started my journey with tracking my food primarily for calories and macros for weight loss. That shifted to performance. My practice is still the same!
"A Goal without a Plan is just a Wish!"
1) Awareness & Mindfulness - we're not off the record!
It's too easy to forget that extra bit of food, or the extra helping at dinner. When you track your food, you take the guess work out of "how much did I have today" or "did I eat enough". You'd be surprised at the quality and quantity of food you're taking in when you see it written out
2) Portion control - wake up call!
Whether you like to count calories, macros, or portion servings - you can become aware of quantity you're taking in, especially when you think an extra serving of pasta is okay, but not an extra serving of broccoli! Was your meal protein heavy? As an active person you need to ensure you're getting enough protein. How about them veggies? lol
3) Quality - a calorie isn't a calorie!
Some people think that if they consume under the total calories of expenditure that they will lose weight. I like to think of the body like a high-end car. Would you put low-grade fuel in a car that requires premium fuel. No! So why would you fuel your body with processed food, high sugar, high salt, processed meats? That calorie can go a long way in the body to providing nutrients vs disease. Don't forget about alcohol - it has calories too!
4) Keep it real - no kidding yourself!
Put it all down. Don't kid yourself if you cheat and if you do cheat you better enjoy the crap out of it and get back on track LOL. You'll want to see what kind of impact that has to your day :)
Meal Plan (week of 8/7/2017):
Example of my food log:
Hi! I’m Bellona! Welcome to Bellona Rising.