Over the past five years, a preponderance of research clearly delineates that we get more out of our resistance training workouts if we consume more protein. Specifically, protein augments our ability to remodel our muscle protein. Ideally, we should aim for 0.7 to 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight (daily). For most people, this represents a significant increase in total protein intake. Over the last 5 years, I’ve heeded this research and intentionally increased my daily protein intake.
Here is what I eat to achieve the 0.7 to 1 gram per pound of body weight recommendation. To be clear, the foods I’ve selected aren’t magical or even the “best” options; they are simply the options that I have built into my daily routine.
I weigh 153 pounds. This means I need between 107 and 153 grams of daily protein.
Breakfast: Kodiak Cake Oatmeal (with a banana and some creatine). 14 grams of protein. I add a small scoop of protein powder to this to get to a total of 25 grams of protein.
Coffee: Small, Dark, Skim Mocha with no whip from Caribou (if I’m traveling, I order the same from Starbucks, but it isn’t as good!). 8 grams of protein.
Snack: Quest Bar. 20-21 grams of protein.
Lunch: Sandwich from Trader Joe’s – Turkey, Spinach, and Swiss (I love sandwiches from everywhere but Trader Joe’s is a go-to for me). Honey Crisp Apple. 28 grams of protein.
Snack: Quest or Muscle Milk Shake. 20 grams of protein.
Dinner: Icon Meal (this is a meal service that I love; they deliver and taste good and force me to consume more variety; and I don’t know how to cook). On average, these are about 30 grams (some are 26 and some may be as high as 40 grams. If I’m eating out, I will generally have fish, steak, or chicken and I can bank on 30+ grams. 30 grams of protein.
Total protein for the day: 131 grams.
This is what I eat 95% of the time (I am a creature of habit and I intentionally try to avoid decision fatigue, and I love eating/consuming all of these). My real variation comes from the type of sandwich I eat for lunch and the exact dinner (the dinner creates more variations in protein as well as vegetables); the rest of the elements are the exact same each day.
Again, these are not the perfect foods. Instead, this is a simple game plan (with math included) for how I’ve increased my daily protein to land in the 0.7 to 1 gram per pound of bodyweight range.