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3 Meal Plans You Must Try to Stay Fit

At the top of the year, many of us added a healthy lifestyle to our “New Year, New Me” checklist. But sometimes life happens, and if you’re like me, you need a bit of a reboot to stay on track. More than anything, the type of foods that you eat determine your level of success in your fitness journey.

I’ve created 3 meal plans around the most popular diets today. There’s a high protein/low carb meal plan, a vegan meal plan and a low calorie meal plan. With each meal plan, I’ve listed two meal options for breakfast, lunch and dinner (because who doesn’t love options) and a few ideas for snacks. The majority of the food options can be made ahead of time and eaten over the course of a week. If this amount of hand holding doesn’t push you to get back on track, I don’t know what will!

1. Low Carb/High Protein Meal Plan

egg

To me, low carb and high protein are interchangeable. To have a low carb diet, you tend to increase your protein intake.  The focus of my low carb meal plan is to get rid of bread, pasta and other processed bread products. Refined sugar intake is also dramatically decreased. What’s left is lean meats, healthy fruits and vegetables. The only thing carb or starch related that’s permitted are sweet potatoes and oatmeal.

Breakfast 

2 eggs, 1/2 cup of strawberries or a small apple

Oatmeal (old fashioned oats or steel cut) made with vanilla almond milk, cinnamon and honey or brown sugar

Lunch 

Baked chicken thighs and broccoli

Baked teriyaki chicken with stir fry vegetables

Dinner 

6 oz. steak and asparagus

6 oz. salmon with kale and half a sweet potato

Snacks

String cheese stick and a handful of almonds

Tomatoes and cucumbers with a Greek yogurt dip (make a simple one with fresh herbs like dill, lemon juice, salt and pepper or add a ranch seasoning packet)

A small apple with peanut butter

2. Vegan 

vegan

Veganism is a major trend in healthy lifestyles right now. A lot of people are curious about it, but it takes time to learn how to create a healthy, balanced diet with it so you don’t have nutrient deficiencies. If you are intrigued enough, try my vegan meal plan for a week to see if you can handle cutting out meat and animal products from your diet. The focus of this meal plan is to eliminate meat and animal products without missing them!

Breakfast

Breakfast quinoa made with vanilla almond milk, brown sugar and fresh blueberries

Breakfast hash made with potatoes, onions, red peppers and black beans

Lunch

Grilled vegetable wrap (made with onions, peppers, eggplant and a tortilla)

Salad

Dinner

Spaghetti squash with marinara and portobello mushrooms

Vegan burrito bowl

Snacks

Avocado toast

Fruit salad

Hummus with vegetables

3. Low Calorie Diet

english muffin

If you just want to scale your diet back some without cutting out things you like such as bread or meat, then a low calorie meal plan is the best route to go. The focus for this meal plan is to be conscious of serving sizes and keeping calories for the day at around 1,500. The best way to do this is to use a calorie counting app to record everything you eat for the day. If done in moderation, you don’t have to eliminate foods from your diet to lose weight.

Breakfast 

Homemade English muffin sandwich (wheat English muffin, 2 egg whites, a slice of turkey bacon)

Homemade breakfast burrito made with 2 eggs scrambled with spinach, tomatoes and crumbled bacon

Lunch 

Open-face turkey sandwich made with swiss, lettuce, tomato, avocado and one slice of bread

Veggie pizza with tomatoes, arugula, and onions

Dinner 

Ground turkey tacos

Baked chicken Parmesan with salad

Snacks

Cottage cheese with pineapple or peaches

Tomato, cucumber and mozzarella salad

Popcorn

Reneé DuBose is a Chicago media professional who was bitten by the health and fitness bug a few years ago. On her journey to get and stay fit, she started a health and wellness blog to share her tips with friends, family and anyone needing help. Visit The Fit Print and keep up with her on Instagram @theFitPrint.