Meal Planning 101: Part 2 – A Week in the Life

Posted on: September 11th 2016

Meal Planning! It’s super fun and awesome!

Well, maybe not fun and awesome, but it is really, really important when you want to eat like an athlete.  

Planning ahead saves you from making rash decisions because you’ve run out of time for dinner before practice, and it can prevent you from blowing your entire derby travel budget on take-out.  

Planning and prepping might seem like a chore, but trust me, once you get into the swing of things, you’ll see it for the time-saver it is.

In our first planning post, we talked about some quick tips that you can incorporate into your day-to-day life to make meal planning achievable.  In this post, we’ll show you what 5 meal-planned days look like.  

(And to round things out, our next post will have ALL sorts of yummy and simple recipes that you can use to make your planning easier.)

First of all – we make the plan (and the shopping list)!

As I mentioned in the first post, I like to make shopping day and prep day one and the same.  I choose the protein(s) that I want to centre most meals around, and I work from there.  

For our hypothetical meal plan, let’s say that chicken is on sale and that I have a roast in the freezer.  Batch cooking two proteins might be a little more work, but it helps to keep your meals interesting through the week.  We’ll also be buying a ton of veggies, leafy greens, and healthy snacks to round things out.  

Our meals will centre around our beef roast, our chicken breasts, veggies and healthy fats, so let’s dig in:


  • Breakfast: Breakfast mini-frittata, piece of fruit
  • Lunch: Chicken & avocado salad, nuts & seeds
  • Dinner: Roast beef and sweet potato, veggie of choice


  • Breakfast: Hard-boiled eggs, Greek yogurt with berries
  • Lunch: Leftover beef and sweet potato, chopped raw veggies
  • Dinner: Chicken with mushroom and onion, spaghetti squash noodles, veggie of choice


  • Breakfast: Breakfast mini-frittata, piece of fruit
  • Lunch: Sandwich in a lettuce leaf, with beef/chicken and fresh veggies
  • Dinner: Roast beef bolognese on zucchini noodles, side salad


  • Breakfast: Hard-boiled eggs, fruit, nut butter or nuts
  • Lunch: Tuna salad, nuts & seeds, cut veggies
  • Dinner: Chicken breast with mashed potato or potato wedges, veggie of choice


  • Breakfast: Breakfast mini-frittata, piece of fruit
  • Lunch: Chicken salad, nuts and seeds
  • Dinner: Shredded roast beef chili (in the slow cooker)

This makes your shopping list sort of look like:

  • Protein: chicken breasts, tuna, beef roast, eggs, Greek yogurt
  • Fresh veggies: salad mix, spinach, carrots, celery, peppers, mushrooms, asparagus, zucchini, tomatoes, onions, green/yellow beans (can be frozen), broccoli (can be frozen), cauliflower (can be frozen)
  • Fresh fruit: apples, bananas, peaches, pears, berries (can be frozen)
  • Fats: almonds, nut butter, mixed nuts (no salt), olive/coconut oil
  • Starches: potatoes, sweet potatoes, spaghetti squash

Buy all the stuff, then get to prepping!

Here’s how I would tackle this week of prep, assuming my shop and prep day is Sunday:

First – prep the proteins.  I defrost my roast on Sunday (or refrigerate if I bought it that day).  The next day (Monday), I pop it in the slow cooker along with some white or sweet potatoes.   If I freshly bought the chicken, I would brine it (or buy it pre-brined).  That just means filling a large bowl with warm water and a handful of salt and letting the chicken sit for at least 15 minutes – I cover and refrigerate it while I’m doing the rest of the prep.  Once I’m ready to cook, rinse and pat dry.

Next, get chopping.  I cut up my snacking veggies for the week and portion them out.  I generally leave my salad mixes and spinach in the big containers and just portion them out each day, but you can separate them if you want (just keep the dressing separate).  I also cut up any veggies that are going in future salads or the breakfast frittatas, spiralize any veggie noodles I am going to use in the next 3 days, and cut up any herbs to go into my freezer chicken packs (more about those in a moment). Finally, I portion out my nuts and seeds into small tupperware or baggies, so that I can just toss one in with each to-go lunch or snack.

Finally, pre-cook. I do up all the chicken and eggs.  I can either cook all the chicken ahead of time, or cook some and marinade/freeze some, (for you, this will depend on much you like your chicken to be freshly cooked).  The chicken we’re going to use in our salads can be cooked ahead, but dinner chicken can be put in a ziploc with some seasonings and frozen until the day of use.  

If I want to pre-roast potatoes or sweet potatoes for mashing, now is when I do it, baking at 400 for 45-60 minutes.

My Protein Pre-Cook Hacks:

Eggs –

  • I make mini-frittatas in lined muffin tins.  Roughly 1 egg per tin, beaten with a bit of milk, add veggies/meat/cheese to each tin (filled 2/3 full).  Cook at 350 for 20-30 minutes.
  • I hard-boil a ton of eggs.  Here’s a sweet time-saver: instead of using a pot, use another muffin tin.  Put a dozen eggs in your tin, bake at 350 for 30 minutes (at the same time as your frittatas).  After baking, plunge the cooked eggs in cold water.  Do a test run to make sure you don’t ruin a dozen eggs.

Chicken – 

  • After you cook your eggs, turn the oven up to 450.  Make sure to rinse the brine off the chicken breasts, pat them dry, then brush them with oil or butter and rub with your desired seasonings.  Bake for 15-20 minutes at 450.  Let cool before putting them in the fridge. (Or try Booty’s stovetop chicken gamechanger if you have 4 breasts or fewer!)
  • If you’re not cooking all of the breasts right away, still brine your chicken, but then put it into ziploc bags with 1/4C olive oil and any seasoning your heart desires.  When you’re ready to use them, defrost, then cook as above.  You can find some amazing freezer chicken recipes here.

Beef – 

  • Let the slow cooker cook the beef.  Have freshly carved beef on the first night, refrigerate the rest and shred as needed for meals.

On the prepping process – 

You’ll notice that I (personally) don’t batch cook my individual meals, but rather get all of the ingredients prepared so that all I have to do on a given night is roast a squash, or make a sauce, or put some stuff together in a pan.  You are more than welcome to batch cook the individual meals in advance (bolognese sauce is a great dish to make, save and reuse) – it’ll make your prep day longer, but you’ll have tons of meals in your fridge and freezer ready for the days ahead.  For me, having a plan in place and having all the pieces of the plan ready to go, is enough to make the daily preparation is a breeze.

Next up, the noms!  Which recipes keep things simple, but are simply delicious?  Check out our next post to find out!

Booty and I are curious – Were you able to implement any of our tips?  How did it go? Let us know what you’re getting up to in the kitchen!

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