The secret to getting that cut, shrink-wrapped look of a fitness model: whittling your body fat down to 6% to 13% (depending on how much you want your abs to pop). To do that, you’ll need to cut about 500 calories a day and adopt a high-intensity resistance-training program to add muscle and eviscerate fat. (You’ll lose about one to two pounds a week.)
Use this three-day sample eating plan to ensure that the weight coming off is actual body fat—not water weight—then create your own long-term plan.
The guy: 175 lb, 5'10", 35- year-old active male
Recommended baseline macros:
Protein: 1.7g/kg body weight = 105g–115g protein daily, 18g per meal (20% of total calories)
Carbs: 288g–316g total (55% total calories)
Fat: 58g–64g (25% of total calories)
Single-digit sample day 1
- Drink 16 oz water
- 2 slices sprouted-grain bread topped with:
1 tbsp natural almond butter
- 4-inch fresh banana
- 1 cup skim milk
- 1⁄4 cup trail mix made with:
Raw almonds, walnuts, pistachios, raisins
- 11⁄2 cups fresh pineapple
- 1 protein shake made with:
20g protein powder
- 3–4 oz pan-seared then baked salmon (4-5 oz raw, 3-4 oz cooked)
- 1 cup mashed sweet potatoes topped with:
2 tbsp raisins
- 1 cup brussels sprouts, roasted
· 3 oz wild-caught salmon filet
· 1 tbsp BBQ Sauce
1. Spray a non-stick pan with cooking spray and heat pan on medium-high. Season salmon with a little salt and pepper and add to hot pan. Cook on skin side down first for about 3-4 minutes.
2. Flip salmon for about 1 minute and then flip back to skin side down.
3. Spread 1tbsp BBQ sauce on top of salmon and then place in a preheated 350 degree oven. Cook salmon until “medium” (about 20 minutes) or to desired liking.
- 20 whole-grain crackers topped with:
2 oz favorite cheese
- 1 cup strawberries, grapes
- 3–4 oz grilled marinated chicken breast*
- 1 cup tabbouleh
- 2 cups salad made with:
Tomato, cucumber, onion
· 4-5 oz raw/3-4 oz cooked chicken breast
· 1/2 cup bottled vinaigrette dressing
1. Marinate chicken breast in vinaigrette dressing (balsamic, Italian, raspberry, etc.) for a couple hours or up to 1 day.
2. Place on the grill and cook until chicken reaches 165 degrees. Take off the heat and let chicken rest for about 5 minutes before cutting.
Single-digit sample day 2
- Drink 16 oz water
- 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese topped with:
1 cup mixed berries
1⁄4 cup low-sugar, low-fat granola
10 walnut halves
- 1 cup quinoa topped with:
2 boiled eggs
1 tbsp fresh salsa
- Burger bowl*
· 1 pound ground chicken
· ½ diced onion
· 1 garlic clove (chopped)
· ½ red bell pepper
· 1 bunch of Tuscan kale
· 2 tbsp olive oil
1. Add 1 tbsp olive oil to frying pan and heat on medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper, and sauté until onions are translucent. Add garlic and cook for about 30 seconds. Add ground chicken and cook all the way through (165 degrees). Toss in favorite herbs and seasonings to taste.
2. In a separate pan, add the remaining 1 tbsp olive oil and Tuscan kale. Put a lid on to create steam for the kale to cook. Add salt and pepper.
3. Cook farro according to directions.
4. Assemble your bowl: Place 1 cup cooked Farro to the bottom of the bowl. Add 1 cup of sautéed kale and top with 4oz of the chicken mixture.
- Chocolate-peanut butter protein shake made with:
20g protein powder, 1 tsp cocoa powder, 1 tbsp peanut butter
- 3-4 oz baked trout*
- 11⁄2 cups new potatoes roasted with:
Salt, pepper, fresh rosemary
- 1 cup asparagus, roasted
1. Place trout on a cooking sheet with cooking spray. Add salt and pepper, and any fresh herbs and spices you like.
2. Bake at 350 degrees F until trout is cooked all the way through, about 20-25 minutes.
Single-digit sample day 3
- Drink 16 oz water
- 3⁄4 cup cooked muesli* topped with:
1⁄2 cup blueberries
1⁄2 cup milk
- 1 whole egg + 2 egg whites, hard-boiled or pan-fried, topped with:
· 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
· 1 cup almonds, chopped
· 1 cup ground flax seeds
· 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds
· 1 cup walnuts, chopped
· 1 cup golden raisins
· ½ cup dried unsweetened coconut flakes
· ½ cup sunflower seeds
· ½ cup dried apricots, chopped
· 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
· 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
· dash of nutmeg
· pinch of sea salt
1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and stir.
2. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
3. When ready to eat, portion out ¾ cup of museli and add ½ cup low fat or nut milk. Let soak for about 1 hour in refrigerator or heat for 2 minutes.
- 1 cup black beans topped with:
2 tbsp salsa
2 tbsp cheddar cheese
- 1⁄2 cup brown rice
- Turkey sandwich made with:
3 oz turkey breast
2 slices sprouted-grain bread
- 1 medium apple
- 3-4 oz tuna packed in water
- 2 cups fresh spinach
- 1 cup wild rice
- Bison burger*
- Salad made with:
2 cups greens and fresh veggies
2 tbsp vinaigrette
· 1-lb ground Bison
· 1/2 cup onion, chopped
· 3 garlic cloves, chopped
· Salt and pepper, to taste
· 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
· Sliced Swiss cheese (1 per burger)
1. Mix ground Bison with a chopped onion, chopped garlic clove, salt and pepper, and 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce.
2. Form 3oz patties and grill or place in frying pan on stove. Cook until burger is cooked to medium-rare to medium (pink to slightly pink in the middle). Freeze leftover patties.
3. Add cheese and assemble onto whole-grain buns.