Tell people you're on a low-carb diet devoid of processed foods, cheese, pork, and red meat, and they'll usually ask, "So what the hell are you eating?"
Well, surprisingly, I'm left with a number of tasty options. I've discussed my diet in broad strokes here, but I'll now share with you some of the recipes that have helped me LOSE 30 POUNDS so far while increasing my strength (see me squat 405 at The Renegade Gym last Saturday). I'll also lay out a typical day's eating plan.
I got the basic recipe off a can of Bumblebee crabmeat, but I modified it so it's a little healthier. I'd also recommend buying the cans of big, chunky "lump crab" as opposed to the really finely chopped stuff.
1 can crab
4 or so tbsp mayo/low-fat mayo/Vegenaise
1 cup artichoke hearts
4 hard boiled eggs
1/4 cup basil
Old Bay or cajun seasoning to taste
Mix it all up in a bowl. It's delicious, has tons of protein, and, depending on how much mayo or mayo substitute you choose, only moderate fat. (If you try Vegenaise like me, you'll find the fat comes from unsaturated grapeseed oil). The whole process takes about 20 min., including boiling the eggs.
Salmon and avocado
This one couldn't be simpler. The title says it all.
1 can salmon
Cut an avocado in half, remove the pit, and fill the insides with salmon. Drizzle some balsmic vinegar over it. I got this idea from Chris and Kara Mohr's website--a must-see for diet and recipe info.
Mexican chicken salad
Even the most brain dead and lazy dieter can handle this one (hey, look who came up with it!)
Go to a gourmet deli and get a few grilled chicken breasts. Go to their salad bar and get a salad loaded with as many veggies as you can stand. Pick up a jar of salsa. Here comes the hard part: cut up and TRANSFER THE CHICKEN BREASTS INTO THE SALAD! Wild, I know. Pour the salsa on top.
This was a staple lunch of mine for weeks. So easy, and it packed around 100 grams of protein with a little over 500 calories. To really Mexicanize it, I'd get jalapenos, mixed peppers, and occasionally beans on the salad. That along with the salsa might be too spicy for some people, but I dug it.
Protein pancakes with berries
This is one of my favorite breakfasts, and one that every fit guy should know. It's perfect on a moderate-carb day right before and/or after a workout.
5 egg whites, 2 whole eggs
1 cup oats (I've also experimented with barley and other grains)
berries (any kind is ok, but blueberries or blackberries are my favorites)
Cook the oats in water, as in oatmeal. Add the eggs and beat. Toss in some berries (maybe a cup full). You could also opt to put in a banana or peanut butter, depending on your tastes and nutritional needs--it's hard to mess this one up. Shake some cinammon on it and add Stevia (this may not be necessary but a little sweetness adds a lot of flavor). Heat up a tablespoon or two of coconut oil in a pan and start pouring some silver-dollar sized 'cakes. They're absolutely delicious and very similar in texture to the classic fattening pancakes we all grew up with.
Here's what I'm eating today.
7:00 a.m.: protein pancakes (I ate half the batch)
9:30 a.m.: post-workout shake. I drink 25 grams of whey protein mixed with 50 grams of waxy maize starch (a carb source). There are many ways to make a good post-workout shake, but the 1:2 ratio of protein to carbs should probably be your underlying goal.
11:00 a.m.: protein pancakes (the other half)
1:00 p.m.: salad from the deli with a can of salmon on top.
3:30 p.m.: salmon and avocado
7:00 p.m.: chicken breasts marinated in oil and seasoning. Homemade salad with lots of greens and dulse, a kind of seaweed. Sea vegetables have been found to be much more nutritious than most land-grown veggies, and their natural saltiness gives them a lot of flavor.
10:00 p.m.: a few tablespoons of almond butter
I aim for about 2,500 calories a day now, and I try to get my weight in grams of protein. I'm not concerned about fat as long as it's from healthy sources, and my carbs--on training days at least (except for my one high-carb day)--are no higher than 130 grams. Weight is still coming off and my energy is as good as ever.
The abs are comin' in...