7 Things I Learned About Meal Preparation for Muscle Gains

Nutrition for Muscle Gains

My muscle fuel is stored and ready to go...

Since nutrition is such a vital part to building muscle and cutting fat, I’ve been trying to really get disciplined at sticking to a good nutrition plan filled with the optimal amounts of protein, carbs, and fats.

I will admit, it can be quite tough. It can be easier to just pull up at a drive through and order some fast and tasty empty calories to feed the hunger. But I have probably taken my body about as far as it can go on “unleaded fuel.”

Not long ago, I decided to start getting the most out of my weight training workouts by feeding my body with “premium fuel,” also known as a good nutrition plan. In addition to choosing the right foods, I also have implemented the act of eating smaller frequent meals.

However, I simply do not have the time to have every meal cooked individually everyday. So I dedicate a part of one or two days a week to preparing as many meals as possible for the week, and store them in the fridge.

(You can see the result of those efforts in the picture…mmm cookies)

Since I’ve started this, I have watched my body change for the better. Even though I have lost 20 lbs, I actually look more like I lift weights now than I did previously. I’ve also learned a few things that I will share with you.

1. It may seem more expensive, but can actually be cheaper

It seems that I cannot go to any fast food restaurant, healthy or unhealthy, where the bill doesn’t total at least a minimum of $7 for one meal. Multiply that by the three times I was doing it before, and its a minimum of $21 a day. For $21 I can get enough food to have six meals a day for close to three days.

2. It can actually take less time if done right

When I’m working and have to break away to leave the office/studio and drive to a fast food restaurant, that can create a 30-45 minute interruption from being productive. That’s not including the additional 15-30 minutes it takes to get back into the working mindset. With pre-prepared meals, its a quick walk from my desk to the microwave, and then I’m back to working before I know it.

This works best if you prepare all the meals that you can on one day. Ideally, I would have enough meals prepared for the entire week by Sunday evening. But when I’m not able to do that, I usually have at least 3 days worth of meals prepared by the same time. The things that I cannot really prepare in advance are the 8 egg whites that I eat daily (eww).

3. You learn to like what you do not like

I used to hate oatmeal, to the point where I could not even swallow a pinch of it. Then I learned about eating it in dry oat form, which seemed even worse. After forcing myself to do it for a while, it became so routine that I am totally fine with it, and actually look forward to it when I am hungry for breakfast. (Not because it tastes good, because it doesn’t, but because it feeds the hunger).

I would say this has even helped my workouts get better, because I took the same approach with the lifts that I did not like. After doing them anyway as a part of the program, I began looking forward to them to feed the hunger that my new muscles have for flexing.
4. Your desire for previously enjoyed terrible foods goes away

First off, I will say that there are some foods that you will always crave. For example, I want some pizza so bad right now, and I am going to eat some as soon as I achieve my next body fat percentage goal! But the desire for many other greasy bad for you foods has went away.

As a matter of fact, there are some things that I cannot even believe I used to like, and I don’t see how some people eat those foods.
5. You start to notice that almost everyone around town is FAT!

Now, this will vary depending on what city, state, or country you live in. But where I live currently, the level of obesity present is quite RIDICULOUS! I just didn’t see how bad it was until I began this “new lifestyle” of eating better. People who I thought were “average” are now cows. People who I used to think were cows are now ELEPHANTS!
6. You could potentially see positive changes to your body almost daily

This will vary depending on your current level of diet and weight training, but it is pretty amazing how rapidly your body can change. Even if you do not see it, people who do not see you every single day as you see yourself will notice.
7. It really is the bridge between having an average body and and impressive muscularly defined physique!

So if you are lifting weights, doing cardio, eating McDonald’s and still do not have the muscle bound machine body with the ripped abs that you want, and yet are still looking for the magic workout plan, then STOP! Most of you probably already have enough workout knowledge to take your body to the next level.

But if you constantly search for new workout knowledge without learning and applying nutritional knowledge and good eating habits, then you are just procrastinating on doing what you know you must do.

It’s really not that bad, and there are tons of great tasting recipes that build muscle, burn fat, and have flavor!

So there you have it kiddies! Those are a few things that I have learned as I’ve adopted a better nutritional lifestyle to go along with my weight training efforts, so that I can really build the strong muscular body that I desire. You should do the same if you are looking to achieve a certain look for your body.

If your goal is simply to maintain or you are a strength focused athlete over aesthetics, then I still believe this to be just as important for you as well.

Make Your NEXT Workout Your BEST Workout!