Hey Live Leaners,
In today’s Live Lean TV episode, I’m showing you how to calculate how many calories, protein, carbs, and fats to eat per meal.
NOTE: Before reading/watching this episode, be sure to go through the last two Live Lean TV shows first. These episodes detailed:
Once you watch those videos and do your calculations, come back and watch this video. I promise, it’ll make a lot more sense to you 😉
I’ll be honest. This strategy is more advanced than the last two videos.
It’s most important to hit your calorie and macronutrient (protein, carb, and fat) goals.
Hitting your daily calories/macros goals are more important than on a per meal basis. However, to get the most results and optimal performance out of your workouts, it’s important to fuel your body with the right energy requirements at the right times.
Also, from a hormonal standpoint, you’re only as good as your last meal. If you read my book, Awaken The Abs Within, I go into detail as why balancing your hormones is key to living lean. When you eat a high sugar meal with little to no protein, it puts your body in fat storing mode based off all the insulin (your fat storing hormone) being excreted to remove the sugar from your bloodstream.
When you add a protein source to this meal, it would have helped to balance the insulin excretion since protein helps release the hormone glucagon. Glucagon helps balance insulin in the body, thus helping to keep the body in a fat burning mode as opposed to a fat storing mode.
This is just one of the many reasons why it’s important to have a protein source with every meal and snack throughout the day.
Pick a number that you can stick too. Honestly, I don’t care what number you pick. In my book, Awaken The Abs Within, I recommended 6 meals. However, if you can’t commit to planning/prepping your meals to consume 6 smaller meals per day, choose a smaller number.
At the end of the day it’s most important to hit your daily calorie and macronutrient goals regardless of how many meals/snacks you eat.
In the video above, I selected 5 meals/snacks per day. Our daily calorie goal was 2,000 calories.
As mentioned above, from a hormonal balancing standpoint (and many other reasons), it’s important to consume a protein source with every meal/snack.
Simply take your daily protein consumption goal (you calculated this in the How to calculate your macronutrient requirements video) and divide it by the number of meals you selected.
In the above video we choose 5 meals/snacks per day. Therefore each meal/snack will be allocated 20% of the total daily protein requirement.
Total Daily Protein Requirement = 200g
1/5 meals per day = 20%
200g of protein x 20% per meal = 40g of protein per meal
There you go. Every one of our 5 meal/snacks throughout the day should consume 40g of protein based on this example.
When it comes to carbohydrates, we want to allocate and consume these calories around our workouts. In other words, the meal before your workout, the meal directly after your workout, and the meal following this meal.
So select the time of day when you workout.
In the video above, our workouts were at lunch time. So our pre-workout meal is meal #2, post-workout meal is meal #3, and post post-workout meal is meal #4.
Total Daily Carbohydrates Requirement = 100g
Pre-workout meal (2-3 hours before workout) = 25% of daily carb requirement
= 100g x 25% = 25g of carbs
Post-workout meal (directly after workout) = 50% of daily carb requirement
= 100g x 50% = 50g of carbs
Post Post-workout meal (1-2 hours after your post-workout meal) = 25% of daily carb requirement
= 100g x 25% = 25g of carbs
Therefore 100% of our carb consumption comes from 3 meals. Pre-, Post-, and Post Post-workout.
What if I workout first thing in the morning?
Since I recommend leaving 2-3 hours to digest whole food before working out (which isn’t possible if you workout in the morning), you can either workout fasted (works well when your main goal is to burn fat) or make a fast digesting shake comprised of protein and fruit.
What if I workout late at night. Are carbs bad to eat at night?
Your body requires carbs after a workout regardless of what time of day it is. If you workout late at night, that is when you should consume your carbs. Trust me, during a late night workout, your body will use up the carbs for energy rather than storing them as fat.
Dietary fat takes longer to digest, slows the absorption of nutrients, and can feel heavy in your stomach. Since you don’t want to workout on a full stomach and you want fast absorption of protein and carbs after your workout, you should allocate the majority of your fat consumption away from your workouts. A little bit of fat in your pre-workout and post post-workout meal is fine, as seen below.
Total Daily Fats Requirement = 89g
Meal #1 = 40% of daily fat requirement
= 89g x 40% = 35g of fat
Pre-workout meal (2-3 hours before workout) = 10% of daily carb requirement
= 89g x 10% = 9g of fat
Post-workout meal (directly after workout) = 0% of daily carb requirement
= 0g fat
Post Post-workout meal (1-2 hours after your post-workout meal) = 10% of daily fat requirement
= 89g x 10% = 9g of carbs
Meal #5 = 40% of daily fat requirement
= 89g x 40% = 35g of fat
Essentially you’re eating the majority of your fats when you are not eating carbs (remember, protein is with every meal)
As I mentioned, this is a more advanced nutrition technique. First focus on hitting your calorie and macronutrient goals. Once you get comfortable with that, try to stick to this nutrient timing strategy outlined above.
Top 3 Takeaways:
1. Consume protein with every meal & snack
2. Consume your carbohydrates around your workouts
3. Consume the majority of your fats away from your workouts
So now it’s your turn to calculate your numbers…
Feel free to share them in the comment section below.
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– Do you consume the majority of your carbohydrates around your workouts?
– What time of day do you usually workout? If it’s first thing in the morning, do you eat before?
Be sure to share your answers in the comment section below and share this post with your friends via the social media icons on the side or below.
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Brad Gouthro is the founder of Live Lean TV, a media company focused on helping men and women “Live Lean” 365 days a year. Brad’s programs and content have helped millions of people all over the world learn how to get in shape, and more importantly, sustain it for life.