The 7-Day Meal Plan

It’s here! I am so excited to share what I’ve been working on for all of you. This meal plan is jam-packed with recipes that, honestly, will last you more than just one week because we like cooking enough for several days. BUT I decided you deserved variety because not everyone knows that there are a plethora of delicious whole food, plant-based recipes out there, so I wanted to showcase some of my favorites.

Here’s a sneak peek!

meal plan sneak peek

Peanut butter banana smoothie, Lentil vegetable soup, Chickpea and spinach curry

This meal plan includes:

  • 7 days worth of meals–breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks that are healthy, whole food, plant-based, and delicious
  • Nutrient breakdown of each meal and daily overview of nutrient targets
  • Easy to make recipes–low prepping and cooking time
  • Fusion of Western, Thai, Indian, Tex-Mex, and Chinese influences for a variety of flavors
  • Cost breakdown of every ingredient–I provide the cost of every item I bought to make this meal plan and it was surprisingly cheap! In fact, most meals made several servings so the overall price I spent for the week would really be more like half of what I calculated if you only accounted for the portions you ate for the week

This meal plan is perfect for weight-loss since it is what you would call a “clean” meal plan but it doesn’t feel like you’re being deprived at all! In fact, most days are around 1700-1800 calories. What’s great about this meal plan is it is easily scalable for your fitness aspirations. Whether it’s losing weight, you can easily reduce serving sizes to be in a calorie-deficit, or increase serving sizes to be in calorie-surplus for muscle building. There is enough protein either way, because as long as you’re eating enough to not feel hungry, you should be eating enough protein. That is the beauty of plant-based eating. No calculating!

BUT I did calculate the micronutrients because I wanted to show you just how nutritious this way of eating is. If you plugged in your food for the day on a omnivore diet I HIGHLY doubt you’d get anywhere near what you needed for some of these micronutrients without supplementing or eating something fortified. However, the best way to absorb nutrients is through diet, not through supplementing. Especially since the supplement industry is unregulated–you really don’t know what, or how much, you’re truly getting or able to absorb.

The only nutrient I do supplement for is Vitamin B12. I take the Jarrow Formulas Methyl B-12 1000 mcg (affiliate link–don’t worry, it is no extra cost to you and it helps keep this site up and running!). I like their formula because they utilize Methylcobalamin which is better absorbed and retained than other forms of B-12. It is also chewable which is best for absorption rather than just swallowing. And the lemon flavor tastes delicious! Plus, it is vegan due to the vegetable sourced compounds. Additionally, I prefer the 1000 mcg dose over anything higher or lower because absorption rates are low, so even if you take 1000 mcg, you may only be absorbing around 40-50 mcg. The recommended intake is 3-5 mcg a day but there is no harm in exceeding the recommended amount for this vitamin. Only intakes above 5000 micrograms per week should be avoided due to lack of evidence for toxicity from higher amounts. I take this every other day to ensure I don’t exceed 5000 mcg a week, but for the sake of hitting all the nutrient targets for the meal plan, I have included the Vitamin B-12 supplement daily.

All you have to do to get this FREE meal plan is sign up for my mailing list below! Then the link will be sent to your inbox for download 🙂 Hope you enjoy it!


If you do follow the meal plan, I would love some feedback! Please share by commenting below, emailing me at healthmylifestyle@gmail.com, or tagging me on Instagram @healthmylifestyle (that’s right, I’m finally catching up on the IG game)

xoxo Rachel

Free 7-Day Whole Food Meal Plan

Food Coma…

Ok, I think I’m just getting old and senile because I’m having a hard time remembering everything I eat. I should probably just write it down instead of trying to remember it the next day.

Breakfast: I started out with 3 strawberry muffins that I made the night before and I enjoyed them while in class. I’ve started to not eat breakfast until after I leave the house. I’m not a morning person so it’s hard to wake up early enough to give myself enough time to eat breakfast before I leave. That’s why I’ve been having a lot of smoothies for breakfast lately. And now muffins.

Lunch: Leftover breaded tilapia, rice, and asparagus!

breaded tilapia

In the afternoon I was craving something sweet and I’m pretty sure I ate another muffin, and some marshmallows with semi-sweet chocolate chips.

It took me a while to get into the mood of working out and even when I did it didn’t go very well. I just didn’t have the energy or the motivation.  I followed more Blogilates videos but they were challenging and I didn’t make it to the last one for the day. The day focused on Arms & Abs.

Dinner: Daniel and I enjoyed 50 cent tacos again at the local bar & grill, Porter’s. I don’t think I’ve had them since the fall semester. They were delicious! They are simple beef tacos with lettuce, cheese, and salsa. I also ordered a small cup of queso but shared it with Daniel. It’s only about 2 oz probably.

I think that’s all I ate? Probably more strawberry muffins. Those things are addictive!

I’m in a food coma right now and it’s late on a Friday night so it’s time to snuggle with my man and go to bed. He’s watching a documentary on Bobby Fischer right now. Nerd.

Have a good night!

Successful Day!

It’s a very dreary day here in Kansas. The bright side (haha), is that the rain/mist seems to have eliminated the allergens in the air temporarily. I just now sneezed for the first time today at 4:30! That’s a record.

Yesterday was pretty successful overall for meals and exercise. I am super sore today to prove it.

What I ate:

Breakfast: I was running late for class so I made a fruit smoothie to-go: banana, strawberries, blackberries, spinach, almond milk, and orange juice.

Lunch: I made a tasty spinach salad with cucumber slices, strawberries, almond slices, feta, and raspberry vinaigrette. Daniel made me two scrambled eggs as well for a little protein.

spinach and fruit salad

Later before he went to work he sweetly drove me to Starbucks so I could get a Grande Soy Iced Chai Latte and he could get his much needed Americano. Apparently the non-drowsy allergy medication I gave him was making him rather drowsy.

For my workout I tried to mix it up a bit. I found suggestions online for Blogilates so I decided to give her videos ago. She has a youtube channel and blog with some really great workouts! I did this video first:

At the end she recommends other videos to go along with it. I guess it’s part of her monthly schedule she has set up on her site. So I followed along with all of them except the last one for the day. My butt was on fire and I sure as hell wasn’t doing another butt video especially when it’s called “Super Butt Workout!” They are definitely some great videos though. Here’s the page with the videos I followed from Blogilates.

After that I decided to get my run on. I went 2.5 miles again. This time I decided to track it with Endomondo on my phone but I started it a little before I started running and stopped it during my walking/cool down so it doesn’t quite show my full distance. At the end of my runs I like to pick up the pace, as you can see by my max speed. 5:38 woot woot!

endomondo running recap

After my run, I refueled with a chocolate protein shake from Shakeology by blending the protein powder with a banana and some almond milk.

Dinner: I made a stir fry with white rice, cucumber, carrots, yellow squash, onion, and spinach. For flavor I added soy and teriyaki sauce. You can find my super easy stir fry recipe here.

stir fry

So I feel pretty accomplished about yesterday! Hopefully I can make good decisions today too. Though I may cut out running since it’s chilly and misting still. We’ll see!

April Fools’ Day!

Happy Tuesday ya’ll! Even though I slept horrible last night — anybody else with awful allergies? — I am in a chipper mood with my soy iced chai latte. What is it about Starbucks that makes a so-so day turn into something cheerful? *holds chai while whispering “my precious”*

So let’s see how well I ate yesterday:

Breakfast: I started off the day with some Chobani greek yogurt. These flip ones are the best! I love the add-ins. I highly recommend the coconut flavored one too. It has almond slices and chocolate pieces to mix in =)

Snack time! Chobani greek yogurt Lunch: I ate my left over salmon and pineapple from the previous day’s dinner. Since it wasn’t very much I paired it with some more of the veggie pasta and cheese-less alfredo sauce.

As a pseudo snack/dinner, Daniel brought home a small portion of potato soup and some saltine crackers before I headed to my 5:30 night class.

Dinner: After my class got out at 8, I’m pretty sure I ate more pasta… can’t remember… but I know I’m always hungry afterwards so I’m sure I ate something. I’m blaming the allergies for fogging my memory.

And since I haven’t bought any dark chocolate Toblerone yet, I snacked on a handful of marshmallows and about a teaspoon of semi-sweet chocolate chips. They pair up quite nicely! I enjoyed them while watching the finale of How I Met Your Mother. OMG!!!! Who else was shocked by the ending?! That was not how I pictured it but I kind of liked it. I’m sad it’s over now. Time to find a new tv to obsess about. Any suggestions?

And since my Mondays are jam packed with work and school, I’ve decided Monday shall be my rest day.

So, anyone pulling sweet pranks today for April Fools’ Day? Apparently Obama resigned! 😛

Monday?!?

Ah, Monday came quickly. I wish weekends were longer. Here’s my food update from Sunday:

Green tea with coconut milk

String cheese X 2 {that’s the last of my stock so no more for me from now on =( }

A handful of grapes and cantaloupe

Some veggie pasta with the left over cheese-less Alfredo sauce

veggie pasta with cheese-less alfredo

It’s a serving of veggies for each portion! Score.

Veggie pasta

And then my parents took me and Daniel to Famous Dave’s for dinner. I ordered with the Cedar Plank Salmon with steamed broccoli and pineapple. They were the suggested sides in the menu for a “light” meal because each side is 100 calories or less. I ate half the salmon, all of the broccoli and cornbread muffin, and half of the pineapple. The rest I saved for leftovers.

cedar plank salmon Famous Dave's

Then later that night I had a bowl of cereal with coconut milk. It was the off-brand fruity pebbles. Not super healthy but it hit the spot.

For exercise, Daniel and I walked around town since it was so nice out. We probably went at least a couple miles. I think we walked for about an hour. It was nice to get outside and we enjoyed observing the houses and discussing which ones we liked or didn’t and what we’d want in a house some day. Definitely a big front porch! We’re both a fan of bungalows.

Alright, this is a rushed post because it’s my bed time. Goodnight!

New Outlook

Alright, time to get back into this thing! I’m pretty excited because now that I posted My Confessions, I’ve actually been doing a lot better about exercising and eating healthier! (Minus some pizza I had Friday night and some Burger King I had last night….)

Here’s what I’ve been doing lately:

I’ve been trying to exercise every day by either doing a Jillian Michaels video or cardio. She’s hardcore! I’ve been alternating between her 30 Day Shred Level 1 video and her Six Weeks Six Pack video. They are great! I’ve also been trying to get in some running. Usually it’s just been a couple miles a week–one mile a day just to get me back in to it. I don’t want to cause any injuries by having too many miles too soon. I did go 2.5 miles yesterday and it felt great! I think I’ll do a couple miles for another week and then up it to three and so on.

For food I’ve decided to take a new approach. I liked documenting everything I ate from each day but finding the calories and posting it was a lot of effort–especially if it was something obscure that MyFitnessPal didn’t have in their database or if it was a strange portion size. So I will continue to post everything I eat but I will not be adding the calorie content. To lose weight it’s all about calories In VS. calories OUT. But I think as long as I’m eating a relatively “clean” diet and exercising regularly, I should be able to reach my goals without calorie counting. By “clean” I mean lots of fruits and vegetables to fill out my diet with limited process foods.

I’m going to miss string cheese so much–and dairy in general, but there are so many sources of calcium elsewhere so I’m sure I’ll reach the recommended daily intake of 1000 mg. Here are a couple articles I found on plant-based sources: Non-Dairy Foods With Calcium and 18 Surprising Dairy-Free Sources of Calcium. So many possibilities! I think I will still have the occasional greek yogurt, but I’ve pretty much eliminated them from my smoothie making regime. Lately, I’ve been digging the Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie over fruit smoothies. I mean, helloooo chocolate! I’ll have the occasional shredded cheese on a taco and feta on my salad, but I won’t be including it into my every day diet. Whole foods in, processed foods out!

Now, what am I going to do about that sweet tooth of mine? I think I’m going to stock up on some dark chocolate Toblerone again and allow myself to have a piece or two a day. That used to be enough for me, and really helped me stay on track by keeping my cravings in check. I don’t want to end up binge eating later on sweets by restricting myself when I have a little craving. It’s all about moderation.

So here’s my day in review of yesterday:

Made some iced green tea with some vanilla coconut milk mixed in. It was yummy!

Worked out by doing TWO 7-minute workouts I found on YouTube. My friend Ashley told me about an app you can download for the 7-minute workout but instead I found several that demonstrate it online. I did both on them back-to-back with a short rest in between. They are very similar but I like the second one better because it’s an actual person going through the motions with you.

Then I made the Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie linked above. I didn’t feel like that was enough for breakfast so I cooked up two eggs with some dried parsley, garlic powder, and paprika sprinkled on them.

Later, I was over at my mom’s catching up with her and we each drank a bottled Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino. I had forgotten how delicious those are.

For a snack, I ate a few grapes and some carrots and cauliflower with some hummus.

Then Daniel and I went for a 2.5 mile run. It was so nice out I even wore shorts and a tank top. Spring has arrived! I made sure to stretch well afterwards.

For dinner, Daniel and I made this tasty looking dish—>

Cheese-Free Alfredo Alternative Spaghetti SquashIt is spaghetti squash with a cashew-based “Alfredo” sauce and sautéed veggies. It was delicious! The sauce recipe is a mashup of several I found online. It has white beans, cashews, garlic, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, white wine, and water in it. It didn’t really taste like Alfredo but it was a nice creamy sauce! It made quite a bit so I have extra to make with pasta today.

Then Daniel and I had some friends over and I drank these:

mang-o-ritasExcuse the poor picture quality and my chipped nail polish. I really like this flavor! And of course I had to use my fancy margarita glass. Those are reusable ice cubes in the glass in case you were confused. I found them at Bed Bath & Beyond. No water-downed drinks for me!

I had a few of them…. So I’ll be cutting back on alcohol for sure. Unnecessary calories! I only want to put food in me that will fuel my body.

So then drunk munchies lead to Burger King chicken tenders and fries. Oops.

I hope you had a fun, albeit more healthier Saturday too!

These Are My Confessions

I really am a terrible blogger. I come back temporarily and then leave again. Life happens. And sickness =( *cough cough*

I finished the Vegan Challenge but not without a few cheat days. I hope to post the rest of it soon. It went well but I didn’t lose much weight and to be honest, I wasn’t very consistent with the workouts. I want to redo it but maybe not go as extreme as vegan. That’s what made me want to binge and have cheat days. I think actually incorporating a cheat day into the plan once a week would keep me from binging when I do deviate from the plan.

But I really enjoyed making the plan and picking the meals and workouts! It was fun and definitely would deliver results if I had followed it to a T. I am loving my vegan cookbooks especially. Who knew there were so many healthy options out there other than just a salad?! I have explored some really good alternatives. And desserts! Ok, that Vegan Cookie Dough is seductive. Yep, seductive. It’s sooo good (yeah, recipe still to come, my bad!)! But just because it’s vegan doesn’t mean it’s healthy–hello sugar!! I may have ate it a time or two more than I should have. So this time around I’m going to incorporate desserts less, but add them enough that I don’t binge on cookie dough, and allow for cheat days before I go crazy. If you’re already vegan, you’re my hero!

So, as I finish up posting the challenge I’ll also be attempting to do it again. I don’t think I’ll repost each day, just update the old ones with my new changes. I’ll definitely be posting how it goes but to see all my eats/workouts it will be in all of the vegan challenge posts. I’ll make a tab along the top for it so they’ll be easy to find.

Just to clarify, when I had cheat days, it wasn’t meat. I was able to at least stay vegetarian, but I could not resist dairy! Cheese, ice cream, donuts. So desserts sound like the main thing I need to solve (which has always been my problem anyways). I’m cursed with a sweet tooth!

Now that I’m off the vegan challenge, I have consumed an incredible amount of dairy. Ice cream, string cheese, lots of lazy meals melting cheese on a tortilla in quesadilla fashion, feta on my salads (which is a must), and the list goes on. In face, I’m eating my second string cheese of the day. I have a problem. Sure, string cheese is a good source of protein, but I really shouldn’t be consuming it as much as I am.

So that brings me to my NEW GOALS! Cut back on dairy for sure. I don’t think I’ll completely eliminate it, but I plan to reduce my intake. No more string cheese. Ice cream only on the occasion. Feta on my salad. No more quesadillas *sigh*. Next, I plan to workout at least 3 times a week. I’ve been doing Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred Level 1 and I feel strong enough that I may move on to Level 2 soon. By the way, I got Daniel to do it with me today! He had a meeting he had to leave for so he only did half of it but I think he was surprised at how out of shape he is. He has agreed to try to workout with me regularly again. Now that the weather is starting to warm we plan to run again. I’d like to run 3 days a week, and strength train 2-3 days a week.

So that’s what’s up.

ALSO. It was my birthday. In February. On the 23rd day. And I turned 24. You know what this means?!? It means my “golden year” is over. If you don’t know what a golden birthday is, look it up. I accomplished quite a bit in that year! I finally started this blog, I lost over 10 pounds, I got accepted into grad school, I started grad school, I got a job as a grad assistant/intern, I have an awesome internship lined up for this summer, and I moved into a beautiful apartment with the best man in the world! Yeah, all you ladies be jealous. Check out my flowers!

Oh, and that’s my mug of tea. But you can’t tell because it’s brown inside the mug. It’s a coffee mug. With tea in it.

flowers and tea

But the flowers are beautiful! At first I thought Daniel bought me flowers as a surprise for riding my bike home *spoiler* he didn’t. Let me explain. So I’ve been wanting a new bike for some time. My bike is currently out of commission. I’ve had it fixed so many times, it’s just not worth it anymore. Plus it was a hand-me-down from my mom and I have no idea how long she had it before me. So the K-Mart in town is closing their doors and had 40% off their bikes! The selection was pretty picked over when I finally took the plunge and bought one, but I found a pretty Schwinn Mirada (I think that’s the name?) in good condition. It has a few scratches but for 40%, I won’t complain. Anyway, it didn’t fit in my car. And I didn’t want to subject Daniel to riding a small woman’s bike home (though I secretly wanted him to) so I offered to ride it home while he drove my car back. When I arrived back at the apartment, he was bearing flowers and a Cadbury Egg! Turns out, he bought them because just the day before I had let 4 of his friends stay at our tiny apartment for the “Fake Patty’s Day” celebration. It’s basically the biggest college party ever. It’s always held the weekend before Spring Break to make sure all of the college kids spend their money on green beer since the actual St. Patrick’s Day is during break. Clever folks. People wake up at 7am to drink and get a breakfast buffet at a bar! ….People like me… But, hey, it was good!

So that’s what the flowers were for.

And here’s a picture of my birthday celebration.

Rachel's 24th birthday celebration

I think it’s the only photo documenting the night. And it’s with two of my favorite people: Daniel and Corey! I also put fake lashes on myself for the very first time. It felt weird. But they stayed on the whole time so I’ll consider that a success! It was a fun night of dinner, drinking, and dancing!

So that’s what’s been happening with me. What’s been happening with you?!

 

Day Twenty-One ~ Vegan Challenge

Day 21
Eat Drink
Wake Up 8 oz of water
Breakfast Oatmeal with a variety of toppings OR 2 pieces of whole wheat toast topped with a nut butter of your choosing and a side of fruit (apple orange or banana) 8 oz of water
Morning 8 oz of water before lunch (I always keep a water bottle handy)
Lunch Leftover Kale With Tomato Risotto 8 oz of water
Afternoon If you're hungry any time throughout the day have an apple or celery with 2 Tbsp of nut butter (I like almond or peanut butter) 8 oz of water before dinner
Dinner Easy Stir Fry 8 oz of water
Exercise At least 16 oz of water after exercise to rehydrate

For exercise I continued on to Day 2 of the Five Day Workout Plan with some 10 lb weights.

Five Day Plan Day 2

And then I made sure to stretch really well afterwards.

Day Twenty ~ Vegan Challenge

Day 20
Eat Drink
Wake Up 8 oz of water
Breakfast Oatmeal with a variety of toppings OR Vegan Pancakes 8 oz of water
Morning 8 oz of water before lunch (I always keep a water bottle handy)
Lunch Leftover Roasted Spaghetti Squash with a side of steamed broccoli 8 oz of water
Afternoon If you're hungry any time throughout the day have some Baked Zucchini Chips OR an apple/celery with 2 Tbsp of nut butter (I like almond or peanut butter) 8 oz of water before dinner
Dinner Kale With Tomato Risotto (it should make enough for two and lunch tomorrow) 8 oz of water
Exercise At least 16 oz of water after exercise to rehydrate

The vegan pancakes are delicious! I had mine with sliced bananas. Next time I’d like to throw some strawberries or blueberries in them. If you don’t have all of the flours you can just use All Purpose (AP). I had AP flour and Spelt but no Flax Meal so I replaced it with Almond Meal. They turned out great! Check out my action shot =)

vegan pancakes

Up close and personal now.

Vegan Pancakes

Fluffy and oh so good!

Vegan Pancakes

Yeah, I’m pretty much an advocate for these babies now. Go Vegan Pancakes!

The Kale with Tomato Risotto was delicious as usual! I didn’t take a new photo so here’s the old one. I used white rice instead of Arborio again. Either one works but Arborio will make it creamier!

Kale with Tomato Risotto

And then it was time to start the Five Day Workout Plan all over again!

Five Day Workout Plan Day 1

Followed by some Yoga =)

Day Nineteen ~ Vegan Challenge

Day 19
Eat Drink
Wake Up 8 oz of water
Breakfast Oatmeal with a variety of toppings OR Vegan Pancakes 8 oz of water
Morning 8 oz of water before lunch (I always keep a water bottle handy)
Lunch Leftover Black Beans and Rice 8 oz of water
Afternoon If you're hungry any time throughout the day have an apple or celery with 2 Tbsp of nut butter (I like almond or peanut butter) or a homemade Larabar 8 oz of water before dinner
Dinner Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Kale 8 oz of water
Exercise At least 16 oz of water after exercise to rehydrate

Today was a rest day so make sure to still get at least 8 cups of water even though you’re not actively exercising. Go for a walk or do some light yoga =)