My number one question regarding my weight loss is what do you eat? Well listen up and I will cover what is undoubtedly the very best meal plan for weight loss. After all it worked for me.
Hi. Allow me to introduce myself. I’m Patty. I began my Fitness Journey in January of 2016. Overall (so far) I have lost 75 pounds and over 13″ from my waist alone. You can go here to learn a bit more about me. I did all of this by following the meal plan I will lay out below. So if you are interested, keep reading.
The Best Meal Plan for Weight Loss – Good Food versus Bad Food
When I began my Fitness Journey I was sure that I needed to cut out all “bad” foods. Imagine my surprise when I was taught there are NO good foods and bad foods. Think about that. How many “diets” have you been on that you have told yourself, “I am going to be good until I get that weight off for the summer, or for that wedding and then I’m going to eat the “bad” food.” I was constantly “restricting” what I ate – often on doctor’s orders. I had about 20 years of 1000 calorie restrictive diets preached to me.
Let me say that again – there are no good foods versus bad foods. Food is made up of calories and all calories count. Chicken and rice and peanut butter and donuts and cookies and cakes and pizza and salmon — all have calories and all calories count! I have tried so many different diet plans and I have even been told that calories don’t count. But let me assure you calories do count!
The Best Meal Plan for Weight Loss – Calories In versus Calories Out
In my article Am I Too Old to Get Started? I cover how my trainer had me track everything I ate and drank. I did this via the FitBit app at the time. To have a fat loss, you need to be “expending” more calories than you are taking in. That’s it! That’s the big secret. To have a fat loss, you need to be “expending” more calories than you are taking in. There is no big secret in what I ate, as long as what I ate was less than what I expended.
In the beginning I was in a 12-week competition – so I had my calories in set at 1900 calories a day and my calories out were usually 2900 – 3300. 1 pound of fat is 3500 calories. So with 7 days in a week if you have a 500 calorie deficit a day, you are on track to lose a pound of fat a week. In the beginning I lost roughly 2 pounds a week because my deficit was higher, but today I am set for 1 pound a week. What that all means is that I eat 1750 calories a day and I expend at least 2250 calories a day. How? By movement – exercise. (We’ll cover that in another article.)
But What Do You Eat, Patty?
By now you probably know that there is no “best meal plan for weight loss.” The best meal plan for weight loss is the plan that works for you. I believe it is necessary to count calories (at least at the beginning) so you can know if you are eating less than you are expending. Guessing never worked for me.
In the beginning I was very strict with my eating. I was a little compulsive in that way. I was so sure that nothing had helped me in the past and I was so thankful for the detailed help I was receiving, I put my absolute all into my eating. The best way I can explain it is I went from cereal/milk or waffles with butter/peanut butter/syrup for breakfast (every day) to eggs, oatmeal, and banana for breakfast. That being said – if I want a waffle, guess what? I can have a waffle. But guess what else? Those calories count! If I want a waffle with all the fixings that bad, I had best plan to eat less the rest of the day or to exercise more. I am telling you what I would do because I am still in the fat loss stage.
For lunches, I almost always had a sandwich with deli meat and mustard and then baked chips or I had Subway or when I worked at the school we often had pizza with garlic rolls. I switched my lunches to baked or grilled chicken with rice or potato and veggies or salad. Again if I want pizza, I can have pizza. But Pizza calories count. Where I used to eat 3 or 4 pieces of pizza, I might eat one and then I log it in my Fitbit app (or MyFItnessPal app)
For dinners, we ate pasta — A LOT. And we ate meat and potatoes and we ate a lot of pork. I switched our suppers to chicken breasts, Jennie O Turkey, lean ground beef, salmon, wild Alaskan cod. We occasionally eat the pasta or the meat and potatoes because we can eat anything but we just need to remember that the calories count.
What is the Best Meal Plan for Weight Loss?
The best meal plan for weight loss is one that you can sustain long term. One that doesn’t leave you feeling deprived. Could that be Keto? Absolutely. Could that be Vegan? Without a doubt. Could it be Macro counting? It certainly could. Could it be Weight Watchers? Yes to that too. Do you see my point?
If you want to see a weight loss (fat loss) you need to be aware of the calories going in to your body versus the calories being expended. I’ll link to a couple of posts I wrote about what I specifically eat, because I know that will still be a question for some. h But know that I too enjoy ice cream occasionally or pizza or a cookie or a butterhorn (a Lombardi favorite.)
I am currently offering on-line coaching. I am not taking on new clients at this time, but I will be putting out a monthly newsletter with helpful tips. If you’d like to be on the newsletter mailing list, you can sign up here.