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Winter Shape Up: Week 4 Meal Plan

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Congratulations – you’ve almost made it through the challenge! Welcome to week 4, the final week of the Winter Shape Up! (Looking for the home base Winter Shape Up page? Click here – it has the answers to any questions you might have about the challenge and links to all the weekly content, too!) Thank you all so much for your participation in the challenge – we hope you’ve found it fun and inspiring!

As you know, my friend Gina and I have partnered up to bring you this fun healthy living 4 week challenge to inspire you to kick off the year on the right foot in terms of fitness and nutrition. Gina is a personal trainer, so on her site, you’ll find the weekly workouts for the challenge, including videos. Here on mine, I’ll be sharing the weekly nutrition-focused content, which will feature quick and easy recipe ideas for your meals and snacks.

We’d love to hear how you guys are doing with this challenge! If you share updates or photos on social media, please include #WinterShapeUp and, if you have space, tag both myself (@fANNEtasticfood – follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram!) and Gina (@fitnessista) so we can see! :) You are also welcome to snag this graphic to put in your posts or on your blog sidebar, if you want!

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Before I get into the plan, please remember that everyone’s nutrition needs are different and will vary based on activity level, age, gender, height/weight, and more. I am a Registered Dietitian, but this meal plan is not meant to be a substitute for personalized nutrition plans or nutrition counseling (like I provide in my AnneTheRD private practice). Above all, use this as a guide, not a concrete plan, and change it as you see fit based on your own hunger levels, preferences, and dietary needs. I’m not including specific quantities/portion sizes because of this – try to eat intuitively and listen to your body. This guide may be too much food for some of you and too little for others. If you’re getting full, save the rest for later. If the meal or snack wasn’t enough, don’t second guess yourself – listen to your body and have something else. If you’re really hungry and try to deny it, it will only lead to overdoing it later or feeling like crap. Honor your hunger, my friends. And same with the other end of the spectrum – stay mindful during your meals, and stop as soon as you start to get full. If you’re distracted, it’s a lot easier to overeat. Your body knows what to do if you just listen to it! Sound good?

A note on drinks: I didn’t include drinks in this guide, but aim to limit sugar-sweetened beverages. If you’re currently having a lot of sugar-sweetened beverages (soda, sweet tea, sweet flavored water, etc.), try to cut back by 1 or 2 drinks per week until it becomes an occasional treat vs. a daily habit. Focus on drinking lots of water, some unsweetened tea/coffee (if you’re into it), and the occasional wine or beer, if you like. :) Regarding dessert, I didn’t include it in the plan for simplicity’s sake, but indulgence in moderation is certainly part of a healthy relationship with food. The key is to view dessert as an occasional treat vs. letting it become an everyday habit. If you really want something, by all means allow yourself to have it and really savor it. There’s no point in feeling guilty – eating perfectly 100% of the time isn’t realistic or healthy. Just make sure that when you do indulge, it’s worth it. Choose the real thing, not a diet imitation; stay mindful and stop when you are satisfied. And lastly: for snack ideas – see the end of this page!

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WEEK 4 – final week!

Monday, Feb 17 – Sunday, Feb 23

First things first – here are the grocery shopping lists:

Week 4 Standard Shopping List
Week 4 Gluten Free Shopping List
Week 4 Vegan Shopping List

The snack list PDF can be found at the bottom of this post. (It’s the same as last week, but I’ve included some new make-ahead snack recipe suggestion links.) Everyone go say a big thank you to my dietetic intern Jackie for putting the grocery lists together for us!

Day 1

Breakfast:

Perfect Microwave Banana Oatmeal 

  • Gluten free option: use gf certified oats
  • Vegan option: use a dairy-free alternative (soy, almond, coconut milk, etc.)
  • Add toppings as desired (be sure to incorporate some healthy fat like ground flaxseed, chia seeds, nuts, or other seeds!)

Lunch:

A big grain/bean salad. On top of 1 cup mixed greens, throw 1/2 cup any cooked grain you like, 1/2 cup your favorite beans, and any veggies you have on hand. Top with avocado, a little feta cheese if you like, and homemade balsamic vinaigrette (to make, just mix equal parts olive oil and balsamic vinegar & add a squirt of dijon mustard and of lemon juice).

  • Gluten free option: use a gf grain, like quinoa.
  • Vegan option: leave out the cheese!

Dinner:

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Veggie Enchiladas 

  • Gluten free option: use gf certified tortillas
  • Vegan option: omit cheese

Note: take a minute to prepare the next morning’s breakfast (it needs to refrigerate overnight).

Day 2

Breakfast:

Overnight Breakfast Cookie

  • Gluten free option: use gf certified oats
  • Vegan option: use a dairy-free alternative (soy, almond, coconut milk, etc.)
  • Tip: if you don’t have protein powder on hand, try using ground flaxseed instead.

Lunch:

Leftover Sweet Potato & Black Bean Veggie Enchiladas. Freeze the rest in an airtight container, if applicable (or eat it again if you want)!


Dinner:

Pesto Baked Salmon with Veggies (gluten free)

  • Vegan option: use firm tofu instead of salmon.

Day 3

Breakfast:

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie (gluten free & vegan)

  • Consider adding some protein powder or having a piece of toast with nut butter on the side!

Lunch:

Meal out on the town! Enjoy, and remember to eat intuitively and stop when you are feeling full. :)

  • Tip: pick something with a good mix of fiber (whole grains or fruit) + healthy fat (things like avocado, seeds, nuts, etc.) + protein (meat, beans, etc.).

Dinner:

Quinoa Salad with Pecans & Cranberries (vegan & gluten free)

  • To add some more oomph to this dish, add some beans (white beans or chickpeas would go nicely) or meat, if you like, and serve with a side salad!

Day 4

Breakfast:

Homemade egg sandwich. On a toasted whole wheat/grain English muffin, add two cooked whole eggs, one slice tomato, a couple slices avocado and/or one slice cheese, and wilted baby spinach, plus some salt/pepper to taste.

    • Gluten free option: use a gf certified English muffin.
    • Vegan option: use tofu or tempeh instead of the eggs and no cheese.
  • Quick tip: cook the eggs and wilt the spinach in the microwave! For the eggs, in a microwave safe bowl that has been sprayed with cooking spray/oil, whisk 2 eggs. Microwave on high 2 minutes. The eggs should be fully cooked! For the spinach, simply place a huge handful of raw fresh baby spinach on a plate and pop it in the microwave on high for about a minute, or until wilted. 

Lunch:

Leftover Quinoa Salad with Pecans & Cranberries (vegan & gluten free)

Dinner:

Easy Skillet Chicken (gluten free).

  • Vegan option: use firm tofu, tempeh, or extra black beans instead of chicken. 

Day 5

Breakfast:

Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal

  • Quick tip: make in the microwave instead – 2 minutes on high, then stir in the pumpkin at the end.
  • Gluten free option: use gf certified oats
  • Vegan option: use a dairy-free alternative (soy, almond, coconut milk, etc.)
  • Add toppings as desired (be sure to incorporate some healthy fat like ground flaxseed, chia seeds, nuts, or other seeds!)

Lunch:

Repeat your favorite Winter Shape Up lunch! What was it? Another idea: enjoy some of the leftovers in your freezer from previous weeks!

Dinner:

Easy Lentil Veggie Burgers (vegan & gf), enjoyed as a sandwich with a salad. (Or simply atop a large salad.)

Day 6 (Weekend!)

Note: for weekend days, I’ve just included brunch and dinner since I know many people tend to eat a late, larger breakfast/brunch and then just have some snacks between then and dinnertime. If you’re not a fan of this approach, feel free to repeat your favorite of the previous breakfast/lunch ideas instead!

Brunch:

Scrambled Egg Muffins with toast and/or fruit.

  • Gluten free option: use ground flaxseed or GF flour instead of spelt flour.
  • Vegan option: Baked Oatmeal with non-dairy milk and 1/4 cup silken tofu in place of the egg.

Dinner:

Re-make your favorite dinner recipe from this challenge! :) What was it? I’d love to hear! Another idea: eat up some of the leftovers in your freezer from earlier weeks!

Day 7 (Weekend!)

Brunch:

Meal out on the town! Enjoy, and remember to eat intuitively and stop when you are feeling full. :) Not in the mood to go out? This is your chance to get creative, or you can enjoy your egg casserole leftovers. 

Dinner:

Leftovers from the night before!

Daily Snack Ideas

Choose a variety of these each day based on hunger levels. Some days you might need a snack or even two or three, while other days you might not need one at all. Focus on how you feel. Hunger levels change daily based on activity and a host of other factors, so don’t expect to feel the same every day. For snacks, just like meals, focus on a good mix of carbs, protein, and healthy fat to keep you satisfied.

Here’s the downloadable PDF with some easy snack ideas/things to pick up at the grocery store (these are not necessarily included in the overall grocery list in most cases): Winter Shape Up Snack Ideas.

    Make-ahead snack recipes:

    Looking for the main Winter Shape Up page where you can find the introduction information and links to each week’s meal plans and workouts? Click here.

    Sponsors:

    Winter Shape Up sponsors

    Sponsors: White Plum | Sabra | Reebok | Cabot | Sizzlefish | Stonyfield | FitFluential

    My final week 4 featured sponsor is Sizzlefish! If you haven’t heard of Sizzlefish before, it’s an online home delivery company that ships you pre-portioned (in exact USDA recommended 4-oz servings), high quality seafood. The fish is shipped flash-frozen and arrives packed in dry ice. I love this because you can just throw it straight into the freezer, and then take it out to thaw whenever you’re ready to use it!

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    Sizzlefish was started by a fellow runner, Rob, who said he came up with the idea while out on a training run, since omega 3 fatty acids (which fish are a rich source of) are so beneficial to athletes. Rob said they’ve been careful to choose the best suppliers in terms of not only fish quality but sustainability, too, which I love.

    For this giveaway, Sizzlefish has offered to ship 2 lucky winners their Omega-3 Protein Mix, which is a $75 variety pack of high omega-3 fish. Yum! Comment below up to once per day with how thing are going for you during the challenge and each comment will count as an entry! I’ll randomly select a winner after the week is over (Sunday night/Monday morning) and notify them directly by email. Good luck, and thank you again for participating in the Winter Shape Up over the past few weeks!

    Comments

    1. 1

      Things are going great! Working out every day and eating clean and healthy…most days! :) Loved the butternut squash chili! I will definitely go back to these recipes and workouts, after the challenge!

    2. 3

      Looks like some great recipes! Had A LOT of chocolate on Valentines Day. Ready for a week of healthy meals!

    3. 4

      Ready for week 4!

    4. 5

      Had a good, strong week 3. Ready for 4!

    5. 6

      baked oatmeal, minestrone

    6. 7

      Bring it on Week 4!

    7. 8

      Due to a crazy busy weekend, I was unable to study this week’s plan and do my shopping! :( I may be able to try one new thing and rely on some of the past weeks’ recipes. Great sponsor this week!

    8. 9

      Love the idea of a grain & bean salad!

    9. 10

      I’m going to make tortillas tonight so that I can make the enchiladas! I already cooked some black beans in the slow cooker last night so this is perfect.

    10. 11

      oatmeal and greek yogurt for breakfast, lunch was at the airport- I brought a kale salad with leftover lobster and scallops, red and yellow peppers and brussel sprouts and then bought a coffee, dinner is salmon and some sort of veggie tonight

    11. 12
      Amber Schumann says:

      So thankful for the freezer goodies I still have from week 1!!! Sweet potato lentil curry for lunch!!!

    12. 13

      Breakfast: green smoothie and banana muffin tops. Lunch – Polish leftovers. Dinner: eggplant parm

    13. 14

      I couldn’t go to the grocery store today, but luckily we have supplies for the lentil burgers! I enjoyed a shake and a salad (and Girl Scout cookies…couldn’t resist) throughout the day. Hopefully I can get to the store soon, but the weather has been terrible!

    14. 15

      Made the gluten free Mexican chicken casserole for dinner tonight and my hubby and I agree it’s a big winner!!

    15. 16

      Yay for week 4!

    16. 17

      I think I’ll try a big hearty breakfast of eggs this morning. Yum!

    17. 18

      Going out to dinner tonight with a friend–I WILL make healthy choices!

    18. 19

      I’m enjoying this shape up series. Thanks for the recipes, I’ve fallen in love with the flourless protein pancake!! It’s so good.

    19. 21

      Breakfast is overnight oats with peanut butter and banana, lunch is the pesto salmon and mixed veggies and some quinoa, and dinner I am going out to sushi with two friends

    20. 22

      perfect microwave banana oatmeal for breakfast (of course). soup for dinner because im sick :(

    21. 23

      It’s been ages since I made an overnight breakfast cookie! YUM!

    22. 24
      Amber Schumann says:

      Start the violins…. I accidentally left my overnight breakfast cookie at home. I’m at work now and ssoooooooooooo bummed. I was looking forward to it =(

      Thank goodness for Starbucks protein box!

    23. 26

      Back from vacation and back on track today. Oats for breakfast, salad for lunch planning on tilapia + veggies for dinner!

    24. 27

      I’m having a taco salad for lunch. Wheat berries instead of quinoa and I’m mixing in some of the leftover tempeh taco mix as well. Thanks for all the great recipe inspiration.

    25. 28
      Melissa S. says:

      Banana oatmeal is my fave :)

    26. 29

      Chia pudding this morning and some veggie soup for lunch

    27. 30

      Had an inspired lunch salad today. Big pile of greens, white beans, roasted sweet potato and feta cheese drizzled with a homemade maple balsamic mustard dressing.

    28. 32

      Didn’t do too well with eating today….ate two boxes of gluten free Mac and cheese. I did not listen to my body at all and am regretting it. Any suggestions for how to move on after binging? Sip on lemon water?

      • 33

        I’m sorry to hear that! My main advice is to think about a strategy for what you would do differently next time to avoid a repeat. Think of it as a learning opportunity. :)

    29. 34
      Christina C says:

      Great big salad for lunch!

    30. 35

      breakfast cookie, salmon cake veggies

    31. 36

      So glad you linked to the breakfast cookie! And I made your pumpkin muffin’s of deliciousness, and they are in fact delicious! So yummy for a healthy snack!

    32. 38
      Stephanie D says:

      Loving the perfect banana oatmeal!

    33. 39

      Checking in and refueling with a protein shake after an intense week 4 workout. Phew!

    34. 40

      I’ll be doing the protein pancake this morning. I haven’t had it in a little while so I’m looking forward to getting it back into my breakfast rotation!

    35. 41

      perfect banana oatmeal for breakfast! but soup again because im still sick :(

    36. 42

      I used leftover roasted kabocha squash in my smoothie! Delish!

    37. 43

      banana oatmeal, minestrone

    38. 44

      Dinner will be ravioli in a tomato porcini sauce. The cold weather made me feel like pasta.

    39. 45

      Oats for breakfast & black bean burger for lunch!

    40. 46

      Breakfast: 2 banana muffins + coffee
      Lunch: Kielbasa & Lentil Stew
      Dinner: Anne’s Thai Chili Garlic Chicken
      Snacks: Cashews & banana muffins and maybe a green smoothie post workout

    41. 47

      Overnight breakfast cookie today!

    42. 48

      Protein pancake for breakfast. Chicken stew for dinner.

    43. 49

      Going to make a batch of quinoa to use the rest of the week.

    44. 50

      Pasta and meatballs for me tonight!!!

    45. 51

      Breakfast was a homemade egg wrap with salmon lettuce soy mozzarella and salsa, lunch was quinoa salad and carrots and hummus, and dinner was a spinach salad, black beans and mushrooms, a sweet potato, plus a big bowl of plain Greek yogurt with specifically k and nuts on top

    46. 52

      I never got around to the sweet potato enchiladas from week 2 or 3 (?), so I made them tonight. Super good, and I calculated the calories–really low for how filling it is. Yay!

    47. 53

      I love the use of avocado in everything however once I cut it open it looks do gross the next day. Is it still safe to eat when it’s that gross brown color?

    48. 55

      Today’s breakfast will probably be an omelet and piece of fruit!

    49. 56

      Fell off the wagon a little yesterday on the eating front–but I will focus on healthy eating today.

    50. 57

      I love eating oatmeal for breakfast. I’ve pretty much given up cereal for the last month and see a huge difference in my energy levels until lunch. It’s wonderful!

    51. 59

      Homemade greek yogurt for breakfast. Mixed in some berries and granola to make it even better.

    52. 60

      eggs and gf toast with PB for breakfast. I really enjoy my chai with milk in the morning and I usually sweeten it with Xylitol. Is that something that you recommend on a daily basis as a sugar replacement? I have a really hard time not having my tea and if it’s not sweet, it’s not appealing.. Any suggestions?

    53. 62

      I’m going to use the egg sandwich idea for dinner tonight!

    54. 63

      So, is this “clean eating”? Avoiding processed food and refined carbohydrates for the most part? It’s so confusing when I go to look for more Clean recipes. I do feel better eating better. Thanks for the great recipes!

      • 64

        I don’t really like the phrase clean eating since it sounds so diet-y, but yes, a good approach is to decrease processed food and refined carbohydrates, and make sure you are getting enough healthy fat (fish, nuts, seeds, avocado, etc.) and protein!

    55. 66

      Today I made a breakfast stuffed sweet potato with Greek yogurt, peanut butter, peanut butter cookie dough protein powder, granola, and mini chocolate chips. Lunch is a salad with the quinoa salad on top, and dinner is shrimp/black bean enchiladas and some sort of veggie

    56. 67

      yogurt parfait for breakfast, chia pudding and veggies+hummus for lunch ! :)

    57. 68

      Breakfast: Smoothie + potatoes + coffee
      Lunch: Leftover thai garlic chili chicken and rice
      Dinner: Pasta Salad, I think

    58. 69
      Amber Schumann says:

      Been really off track the last couple weeks. But I did enjoy a super yummy overnight breakfast cookie this morning :)

    59. 70
      Christina C says:

      Big salad for lunch!

    60. 71

      Dinner tonight was chili made with ground chicken breast and beans on top of a bowl of roasted spaghetti squash. One of my favorite meals! Right now I’m off to make some banana soft serve…yum!!!

    61. 72

      Another breakfast cookie day and lots of vegetables for lunch and breakfast.

    62. 73

      Traveling today but aiming to keep it healthy

    63. 74

      Finished last night strong–evening is usually my weak point.

    64. 75

      I love that none of your recipes sound “diet-y”. So refreshing. Since i’ve started this challenge, I’ve lost 3.5″. The scale has only budged 3 pounds, however. I keep reminding myself that the number on the scale is irrelevant. How I feel is most important. It’s amazing how much pressure we put on ourselves…..it’s exhausting.

    65. 77

      fish + zucchini and asparagus tonight!

    66. 78

      I’m going to do my best to make healthy choices tonight when we meet friends for Mexican food!

    67. 79

      Checking in with lunch! Black bean burger on a salad & grapes!

    68. 80

      Things are going great. Staying on track with healthy meals.

    69. 81

      I’m enjoying experimenting with these recipes and I love having the gluten free option there…takes the thought process out of it for us gluten-free eaters. Thank you!

    70. 82

      egg sand, chicken salad

    71. 83

      I made the Mexican lasagna for my repeat meal last night for my mom and fiancé and they both loved it!

    72. 84

      I also ate banana oatmeal for breakfast and my co-workers all asked for the recipe.

    73. 85

      clean eats for the day and will try and make good choices tonight for dinner out!

    74. 86

      Breakfast was a new Caramel macchiato Greek yogurt a small bowl of rice chex with blueberries and coffee, lunch was a big salad with shrimp and peppers and trail mix, dinner is going to be a shrimp burger

    75. 87

      I did the high protein oatmeal this morning. I seriously love that!

    76. 88

      Microwave banana oatmeal for breakfast. I have a salad with chicken, beans and Craisins for lunch.

    77. 89

      I don’t know what I was waiting for, but I FINALLY made a protein pancake! So delicious!!!
      I didn’t follow the meal plans day-by-day because time always turned out to be an issue, but I used your grocery lists and made a ton of new things that we loved!
      Thanks so much for putting this together :)
      Will we still have access to the Shape Up by week? I’d like to start over and do it again, if possible!

    78. 91

      mmmm Chocolate Cherry Espresso smoothie today!

    79. 92

      Can’t believe this year’s winter SU is ending! Really loved having your input this time :)

    80. 93

      egg sandwich, chicken & veggies

    81. 94

      Last breakfast after a 5k this morning, some trail mix before, caramel stoneyfield Greek yogurt with muesli and mini chocolate chips and multi grain Cheerios plus a little silk milk to make it extra creamy, grapes and coffee. Lunch was a tuna wrap, snack a quest bar and dinner with be almond crusted tilapia and cauliflower and asparagus

    82. 95

      Finishing week 4 strong. Workout 4, protein shake, healthy meals and snacks packed for lunch today.

    83. 96

      egg sandwich, minestrone. I plan to continue for another 4 weeks. Love this!!!

    84. 98

      Heading out for mexican tonight!

    85. 99

      I can’t believe it’s already the last day! Thanks for your fab meal plans. It definitely helped me focus in on eating well.

    86. 101

      Things have gone better than expected for me. I’m so happy to have followed along with the great meal and workout plans. Thanks a million.

    87. 103

      So I spent the entire day thinking, “Why hasn’t Anne put up the plan for next week yet? She usually has it up by now!” It truly took me until about 5 minutes ago to realize that the shape-up is over. :(

    88. 105

      salmon burger and salad

    89. 106

      Man do I FEEL better eating better. Might I add that I may finally have this intuitive eating thing working ? Hmm.

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