A bodybuilding meal plan is a very special and strict dietary plan that must be followed with accuracy by the bodybuilders. One of the most important aspects of such a dietary plan is muscle nutrition. Bodybuilders do not need to accumulate fat; they need to eat only important meals rich in fibers and vitamins that will help them grow healthy and strong muscles. Those who want to grow a huge amount of muscle within a relatively short time must eat plenty of extra calories each day combined with the natural special supplements (granules) that are suitable for bodybuilders.
Normally, the organism of an average adult will burn around 2,000 calories a day. Now, people who want to obtain muscle mass quickly must follow a special bodybuilding meal plan, which is richer with at least 500 to 1,000 calories. This means that, instead of ingesting 2,000-2,200 calories, bodybuilders must ingest anything between 3,000 and even up to 6,000 calories per day.
The bodybuilding meal plan of a beginner should be made up of 20% fat, 30% proteins and 50% carbohydrates. Naturally, sometimes, it is impossible to consume such a huge quantity of food to provide your system with 4,000 or 5,000 calories, and this is where the bodybuilders’ supplements step in. These supplements come in the form of granules and they are usually mixed with the food you eat, or they may be taken separately. For instance, a bodybuilder that needs to eat as many as 5,000 calories per day, may take 2,500 calories from food and another 2,500 calories through consuming these special supplement meals.
Now let’s have a look at the three most important components of a bodybuilding meal plan:
The Fats - as mentioned earlier, a bodybuilder should consume fat amounting to 20% – 25% of the total calorie intake. They should definitely avoid the trans fats and the saturated fats, and focus on consuming only monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats. Some foods highest in monounsaturated fats include olive oil, sunflower oil, avocadoes, macadamia nuts, herring, fish oil, or peanut butter.
The Carbohydrates - these make up the most significant dietary intake of a bodybuilding meal plan (between 40% and 60% of the total amount of calories). Carbohydrates are of two types: simple and complex ones. A bodybuilder must consume only the complex carbohydrates, which are extremely rich in fiber, and thus aid the digestive system. Moreover, the complex carbs stabilize blood sugar levels very well and they help keeping the energy levels quite even for a longer period of time.
The simple carbs are ruining your health, and they are primarily responsible for diseases such as diabetes or heart complications. If you are following a bodybuilding meal plan, you should definitely avoid simple carbs such as table sugar, corn syrup, cakes, candy, bread made with white flour, soda pops, or pasta made with white flour. Focus on consuming the healthy, complex carbohydrates, such as: spinach, grapefruit, apples, prunes, dried apricots, asparagus and artichokes, oatmeal, pears, radishes, broccoli, eggplant, carrots, potatoes or lentils.
The Proteins - these make up approximately 25% – 35% of your daily calorie intake, and you should make sure to consume only foods that are packed with high quality proteins. The protein is the most important ingredient that actually builds the muscle tissue, and this is why consuming quality proteins is crucial. Some high quality protein food sources include the Sirloin Steak (17grams protein/ 2 oz serving), chicken thigh (16grams protein/ serving), pork (8grams protein/ serving), or chicken drumstick (14 grams of protein/ serving).
The bodybuilding meal plan should also include pure protein sources, such as: whey protein (24grams/scoop and 100 calories), egg whites (24 grams protein/6 egg whites and 102 calories) or turkey breast (20 grams protein/ 3oz serving size and 90 calories). Some other very important quality protein rich foods include salmon, sardines, peanuts, sunflower seeds and almonds.
Now you might think that a bodybuilder must eat a lot of calories. It is true, but keep in mind that all these are high quality calories, proteins and fats that are working towards building muscle mass, and not towards accumulating pure fat. This is the difference between the high quality food sources and the bad quality sources. Once you know how to make these differences, you will be able to create a bodybuilding meal plan which will help you build lean muscles.
Here is how a professional bodybuilding meal plan looks like:
- Breakfast - 1 huge bowl of oatmeal + skimmed milk; 8 egg whites, scrambled, 1 or 2 fruits (usually an apple or a cup of strawberries). Usually, a few scoops of meal supplements will also be added.
- In 2 hours after breakfast, take a snack. This can be one sandwich made with peanut butter and one sliced banana put between 2 slices of whole wheat bread.
- The lunch is usually a lighter meal including perhaps grilled chicken breast, an extra large salad and one soda.
- One or two hours later, the bodybuilder will eat once again a meal such as a hamburger or a chicken sandwich.
- Dinner – extremely rich dinner containing steak with salad, and one entire bowl of ice-cream.
This is a lot of food, but consider that bodybuilders are several hours in the gym lifting weights, and they are not accumulating even 100grams of fat, but they are building only healthy muscle tissue.
Also, right before going to bed, bodybuilders usually take a few scoops of slow digesting protein so that they “feed” their muscles for the night. Quite often, they also need to take a special mixture that protects the liver, since they are eating a double or even triple amount of calories compared to an average adult.
If you are a beginner, it would be recommended that you start with learning how to select the good carbs from the bad ones, and the healthy fats from the unhealthy ones. A professional bodybuilding meal plan should always be prepared by an expert in the field, and you should never start eating in excess and exercising on your own.