How To Make Bodybuilding Meal Prep Easy and Sustainable.
By Stuart Carter, Head Trainer & Men’s Health Coach, The Fit Father Project
The secret behind being successful with meal prep revolves around being consistent and making it easy.
You’re probably already aware that you need to eat more calories than your ‘normal’ intake.
This is the only effective way to grow your muscles and improve your body building physique.
Exercises such as those provided by the Old School Muscle Program are essential for building your muscles but they will only be effective if you consume enough calories to power your muscles and help build and repair them.
However, this does not mean eating anything and everything you feel like!
Find the Perfect Balance of Nutrients.
To stay healthy and pack on the muscle, you must keep a balanced intake of food.
This means you need to know the number of calories you are consuming.
However, knowing your calorie intake is only the first step. It’s also essential to maintain the right balance of proteins, carbs and fat (macros).
The ideal target is 35% protein, 40% carbs and 25% fat.
To get the right balance, you need to know exactly what you’re eating and when. This can be very difficult for many busy men over 40
I understand that having the time to check every meal, before you eat, is simply not viable!
The Answer?… Good Bodybuilding Meal Prep
The only approach that will allow you to successfully achieve your bodybuilding goals is to start bodybuilding meal prep.
There are several key steps to getting this right:
Bodybuilding Meal Prep Step #1: Plan Your Meals Ahead of Time.
For ideas on what you should eat you can look at the Fit Fathers 1-day Meal Plan. This will help you to understand what meals you need to eat.
More importantly, you will start to understand which foods can be put together to create the right balance of nutrients and the calories you need.
To plan properly it is essential to select a range of meals which will last you all week.
You have probably never considered this level of meal planning before but you will appreciate it during the week.
The first few times you create your meal plan you may find it time consuming. It does get easier and will save you heaps of time and decision making in the long run!
The planning stage involves deciding what meals you can eat to create the right amount of nutritional benefit and the correct number of calories each day.
You will need to plan to eat 5 meals each day.
This will be breakfast, a mid morning snack, lunch, a mid-afternoon snack and your dinner.
It is highly likely that you will be at work or otherwise engaged for your snacks and lunch.
This makes it doubly important to have these meals prepared in advance and taken to work with you.
Perhaps the greatest benefit of planning your food is not only the comfort of knowing you are consuming a healthy diet…
but also the huge benefit of having all your meals pre-planned so you will not be wasting time trying to decide what to eat and how it fits into your eating plan!
Bodybuilding Meal Prep Step #2: Prepare Meals Twice per Week.
Once you’ve worked out what you’ll be eating, you can purchase any items you need and spend time preparing.
Prep days should take you no longer than 60-90 minutes, twice per week. (I recommend Wed and Sun)
This is an essential stage as it ensures you have everything you need for a week of good, nutritious eating.
It’s not enough just to know what you want to eat; time and other influences can still affect your ability to produce the required food.
Spending an hour or so preparing the meals for the next few days assures you that you have the right ingredients and you will consistently hit your eating targets.
This will automatically help you to build muscle; providing you are completing the 5 Best Muscle Building Exercises everyday to complement your bodybuilding meal prep.
Bodybuilding Meal Prep Step #3: Pack Your Meals, Ready to Eat.
The next step is to pack your meals. This usually means utilizing your refrigerator space!
If you pack every meal separately then you will be able to easily access them when you need them.
You should also consider which meals will need to be taken to work with you and what facilities you have at work to reheat if necessary.
There are many meal choices that can be kept in the refrigerator; these may be the most suitable for taking to work with you.
Snacks, especially when you’re not at home, are easily accommodated by using protein bars or shakes.
Bodybuilding Meal Prep Step #4: Set Reminders.
There’s little point in spending the time preparing your food if you forget to take it with you.
It will be virtually impossible to replicate the calorie and nutrient intake without disrupting the rest of your day’s intake.
Therefore, to achieve a successful bodybuilding meal prep plan you must create reminders for yourself.
The first should remind you to select the meals you wish to eat for the day, so you know what to grab for your busy day ahead.
The next set of reminders should be to actually prepare the meals.
As this can be the hardest part due to it being more time consuming, you are more likely to ‘forget’ about it.
After using the reminders for a few weeks it will all become habit and the reminders should not be necessary.
Bodybuilding Meal Prep Step #5: Dedicate Yourself to Achieve Success.
The right bodybuilding meal prep can go a long way towards improving your results both in what you are consuming and in building your muscles.
However, meal preparation requires dedication.
You need to follow each step of the plan to ensure you have the right meals ready when you need them.
To successfully achieve your bodybuilding goals through meal prep you must believe that you can get the results you want.
The right mindset combines perfectly with meal prep to give you the edge you need.
Preparing meals in advance will ensure that you do not need to think about what to eat, or find the time to make the right food.
You can simply grab the meal from your plan and be eating in no time at all!
With a good meal plan you may be surprised at how quickly you can see significant gains in your muscle mass.
The Next Step Is To Take Action.
Now you know that the 3 ‘P’s, Planning, Preparing and Packing are the best ways to be successful with bodybuilding meal prep, you can get yourself underway and get the results you want.
Simply choosing 1 portion of each of the main macronutrients, preparing a good meal with them and packaging it is the simplest way to have a sustainable eating plan.
You can find meal suggestions inside the Fit Father 1-Day Meal Plan, or on this website.
I hope you found this article helpful and informative. If you feel it would be useful to others, please use the social media buttons on the left to share it.
I thank you and wish you every success in your muscle building journey.
Until next time!
Your new friend & health coach,
Head Training Staff, The Fit Father Project
Brotherhood Nickname: “The Fit Brit”
Bragging Rights: 16 Years in the fitness industry, Author of ‘The Easy Fitness Guide’, Father of 4 boys and Husband to a Venezuelan beauty.
*Please know that weight loss results & health changes/improvements vary from individual to individual. Always consult with your doctor before making health decisions. This is not medical advice – simply very well-researched info about bodybuilding meal prep.