The idea behind this whole experiment is to make it as easy as possible. Most of the programs I see 1) focus on short term results, and not on long term changes, and 2) make it impossible to stick with because the meal plans suck, plain and simple.
Food needs to taste good, first and foremost. If it doesn’t, you won’t want to eat it, no matter how healthy it is. Second, unless you are someone who has a surplus of time, if making the food isn’t easy, you won’t do it. Humans are creatures of habit, and tend to take the path of least resistance.
When it comes to food, that usually means hitting Starbucks for breakfast, Chipotle for lunch, and pizza delivery for dinner. Once we’ve ceded the decision to make our own meal, once we’ve made that one, small compromise, it becomes easier to compromise on subsequent decisions: instead of finding the healthy option at one of the aforementioned places, maybe we get one that’s not quite as good for us. And maybe, once we’ve done that, we get the venti instead of the grande. (I can only speak to my personal experience on this.)
So the first phase of Warrior/28 is all about creating long term change. I prepared some easy meals for the week on Sunday, and I can mix and match most of the stuff here to change it up so I’m not stuck eating the same lunch or dinner every day. You can see this week’s meal plan here. Just know, this isn’t set in stone, and I’ll update it as I go.
(Clockwise, from left)
- Warrior Chicken: dinner 3 nights this week. Seasoned with Warrior Blend (see below)I’ll have that with some steamed veggies (not pictured) and the Coconut Rice (see below)
- Avocado: I’ll keep one of thee around as either a mix-in with my lunch, or with my eggs, should I be so inclined to actually make some before work
- Fuji Apples: afternoon snacks
- RX Bars: so many nutrition bars to choose from! That’s a post for another day. Most nutrition bars, while high in protein, are also higher than I would like in cholesterol, and with my family history with heart disease, that’s a route I’d just as soon avoid. I picked up these guys because it looked like a flavor I would like, and there are only 7 ingredients in them. I’ll let you know how they work out.
- Granola bars: I mix them into my yogurt. Adds a little more protein, puts some crunch in the yogurt, and let’s face it, fiber is our friend.
- Chobani Greek Yogurt: protein, and while there are conflicting studies on how beneficial yogurt can be for your gut, I figure it can’t hurt. I’m always starving around mid-morning, regardless of what I have for breakfast, so this helps bridge the gap between breakfast and lunch.
- Cilantro and Red Bell Pepper: pre chopped and ready to mix into any of my meals, should the mood take me. I like having options for flavor so that I don’t feel like I’m eating the same thing every day.
- Zombie Spice Blend, and Warrior Spice Blend: always keep spice rubs around. It’s an easy way to prepare a meal: take meat or veggies, add spice rub, and cook. Done. The Zombie Spice Blend (soon to be available from Saint Brian’s BBQ) is a Caribbean jerk style rub with coffee grounds, adding a nice flavor profile and a little caffeine kick. The Warrior Spice Blend (also soon to be available from Saint Brian’s BBQ) is specially formulated to take advantage of spices that studies have shown to have properties that aid in recovery, and it has no salt, so it won’t make you retain extra water.
- Pork chops with Zombie Blend: this will be one of my lunches this week, eaten in taco form.
- Barbecue Chicken: seasoned with Dash Cunning Spice Rub, grilled, and shredded. Other lunches this week. These, too, will be consumed in taco form. I’ll add either Saint Brian’s Original Sauce or Sweet Victory Sauce to punch it up.
- White Corn Tortillas: whole wheat tortillas are crap. Let’s face it. They fall apart when you look at them. They serve no purpose in conveying food from my plate into my mouth, other than to lull me into a false sense of security before dumping food all over my hand and down my arm.
- Apple Slaw: I julienned a Fuji apple, mixed it with a pre-bagged coleslaw mix, and added a dressing of mayo, cider vinegar, and honey. This will go really well with my lunch tacos.
- Coconut rice with cilantro: I made Minute Rice, but instead of water I used coconut water to add some flavor (plain rice is incredibly bland). I added some chopped cilantro to add some freshness. I didn’t feel the need to go with brown rice because A) I don’t like it, and B) a recent study has shown that there are no health benefits to eating brown rice over white rice.
Not pictured: steamed veggies, and breakfast. The steamed veggies come in those bags from the freezer section that you can just throw in the microwave. That will round out my dinners. Breakfast is usually just a bowl of Frosted Mini Wheats. Between taking care of the dogs (one requires chicken in his bowl or we won’t eat his food; he also will not poop unless he is on a walk, and I need to carry him up and down steps because his hips are bothering him) and getting myself ready, I don’t have a lot of time in the morning for much more.