Let me explain. I don’t post much about healthy recipes anymore. That’s because people complain. The ingredients are either too expensive, not available, too little, too complicated, or not tasty enough. But that’s the beauty of cooking at home: you can change everything to fit your lifestyle. I’ve made several realizations: firstly, modern healthy eating is a marketing product. Secondly, people see food as a source of joy and entertainment. This has changed my approach. We are so used to being sold the idea of glamorous healthy eating, pretty packaging, superfoods, recipes, juicing and meal plans, that we forget what the essence of healthy eating should be: eating simply and naturally. When you are on a path to weight loss or if you want to get fit, unfortunately, your priority shouldn’t be the tastes you’re used to. It should be nutrition. Second is cost. Third, convenience. Now that you know that, you need to be ok with it. Condition your mind to start liking vegetables, fruits, complex starches and lean proteins, cooked very simply: salt, pepper, herbs, a little bit of oil, steamed, grilled, seared, or baked. Don’t look for recipes that call for tons of ingredients, just to make something healthy taste like something unhealthy that you enjoy. You’ll start to appreciate the taste of simple, natural ingredients, prepared quickly, brainlessly, with ingredients that you can afford.
Take my lunch below for example. I roasted this chicken breast, with a whole onion, cauliflower, and a sweet potato. Don’t have access to any of those ingredients? Replace them with something you do have access to; as long as they are whole and inherently good for you (google it). This will be my lunch and dinner, just split in two with some broth. No recipe needed, just a bunch of stuff in a baking tray with oil, some salt, cooked for 45 mins. No oven? Sear it. Different result, approximately the same nutritional value.
This allows me to eat consciously, consistently, quickly and allows me to reach for that tub of ice cream sometimes. (with sugar – the less you have it, the less you’ll crave it). Good luck on your journey, screw what anyone else thinks.
Day 2: Healthy nutritious eating doesn’t need bells and whistles. Keep it simple.
1 onion, 1 sweet potato, 1 handful of sigarilyas (winged beans) with 1 tbsp of coconut milk, 200g of tuna. All just seared with 1tsp of olive oil in one pan with salt and pepper. 8 ingredients. No recipe needed. Is this the most delicious thing you’ll ever eat? No. Did it satisfy my cravings? Not really. Am I full? Yes. Is it good for your body? Yes. Well, that’s all that matters. Whatever your priority is, make sure you stay true to it.
Fuel not fun.
This is how I will be eating, more or less, for the next 2months.
Workout today: 3km run. 1 hour of shoulder and high intensity movements.
Day 3: Same same but different.
Had some leftovers from the ingredients used yesterday. Just made an effort to make the dish tastier. This usually entails adding ingredients. However things like herbs and spices, add a punch without the bad calories.
Take 180g of tuna cubes, seared with 1tsp of coconut oil. Salt, pepper, paprika.
1 handful of sigarilyas, 1 sweet potato, 1 red onion, 1 clove of garlic, sliced basil leaves, all chopped up and fried with 1 tsp of coconut oil. Finished with 2 tbsp of coconut milk, 2 dashes of fish sauce, paprika, ground coriander and chili flakes. Topped with cashew nuts.
I made this twice so I’ll be having it for my second lunch in 30mins. (first meal at noon, 2nd at 3pm, third at 7pm). 1 saba banana as a snack at 5pm.
Today’s 90 mins workout: 20 mins row, 100 deadlifts, 100 cleans, 80 squats, 50 pull ups, abs.
Day 4: Start now, not tomorrow, not the day after.
Today my muscles felt tired, so I made sure to up my protein intake a little, so I cooked this big bowl of simple love, cut it in two and ate one portion at 1pm and the other at 3 pm.
Total intake: 1 boiled egg. 1/2 cup cooked red rice. 3 cups of chopped kangkong (the stalks are my favorite part) , stir fried with 2 cloves of garlic, 1tsp of coconut oil, 1/3 tsp of sesame oil. 350 grams of skinless chicken breast (no fun), cubed up and cooked with 1 tbsp of coconut oil, 3 cloves of minced garlic, 1 red onion, 1/2 cup of fresh basil, 1 small red chilli, 1/2 cup of water, 1/3 cup coconut milk, a bunch of ground Indian spices (they make all the difference), a pinch of salt and black pepper.
Cook and prep time: about 20 mins
For people who have been asking: About 800 calories for the whole thing. 16 g of carbohydrates, 43g of fat, 93g of protein. Means about 400 cal per serving.
1 hour squash
WOD: filthy fifty
Day 5: Sunday.
Families and friends can either be your best support group or your stumbling blocks when you are trying to eat clean. I’ve found it effective to shout at the top of my lungs when I’m being strict on myself, so that everyone around me knows. At the end of the day, if they care about you, they will support you and not try to break you (we all have that one friend who always wants to drink or that tita who will almost force feed you). You shouldn’t feel bad about wanting to switch things up for the better. So even if its a family lunch or a night out with your friends, if it’s not a scheduled re-feed or a cheat meal, don’t do it, it’s never worth it the next day. You can still have fun being healthy.
Today’s plate was a lazy one. 1 shredded sweet potato, mixed with 1 egg white, formed into a hash brown and fried in 1 tbsp of olive oil. 1 cup of local Kale (use any greens you can cook in a pan), quickly cooked in 1 tsp of sesame seeds and 1 tsp of coconut oil. 1 whole shallow poached egg, 1 poached egg yolk (used the white for the hash brown). All finished with 1 tbsp of unsweetened cashew nut butter, chili flakes, flake salt, lemon juice and paprika.
Approximately: 625 calories. 30g carbs. 48g fat. 26g protein.
Workout: 60mins hill sprint session.
Day 6: 10% done.
Food doesn’t always need to be pretty. The nutrition you get out of a meal is more important than the flavour or the plating (only when you are trying to get lean). This is the laziest one yet. 400 grams of chicken breast, 1 whole beet, 1 whole head of garlic, 1 peeled red onion, 1 whole cauliflower head. Everything drizzled with 2 1/2 tbsp of olive oil. Topped with a spice mix (I’m using the Sazon Tropical mix from Badia available in Landers Superstore). Placed in a heavy skillet, wrapped loosely with aluminum foil. Cooked in my Viking convection oven for 1h at 175 Cº, then again for 20 mins without the foil at the same temp. Peel the beet. Done.
This made me feel like I was eating at a camp fire, but without the tent and the mosquitos.
2 servings = 1100 calories. 46g carbs. 62g fat. 100 grams protein.
Today’s workout: high volume chest and back work. (see: too many pull ups and pushups)
Day 7: Happy ‘Take everything you have in a fridge and put it in a soup day’
I don’t know why soups are seen as appetizers or things that have to be eaten with something else. Give me a good Tinola made from scratch any day and I’ll eat that for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It’s healthy, but it doesn’t contain much nutritional variety. For that I like turning to heavy vegetable soups.
Start with either a good lean bone broth or a tomato base and add in anything that can be blended up after cooking. I roasted up 2 peeled sweet potatoes and 300 grams of squash with 1 tsp of olive oil and some salt, covered in foil, in an oven, at 175 Cº for 1 hour and 30 mins. I then took a whole 800g tin of peeled plum tomatoes added it in a heavy stock pot with 2 cups of water, my 1 cup leftover cauliflower from yesterday and the rest of the vegetables , with a pinch of salt, some spices, and pepper. Simmered it for 90 mins, added 3/4 cup of coconut milk, chili flakes, and blended the whole thing. Finish it up with any fresh herbs you have on hand. I didn’t have anything so opted for some delicious crunchy garlic from @josefinascrunchygarlic.
This will make you really full because it is so nutritionally dense. Totals: 1246 calories. 120g carbs. 74g fat. 28 protein. I would suggest splitting this into 3 portions. I couldn’t even finish a third, maybe because I’ve been drinking liters of green tea today. I didn’t even touch the roasted beets with balsamic on the side.
Workout today: arms, abs, rowing.
This has been a pretty good week so far. Stay tuned to my Instagram for more updates on my Clean 60 journey!