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  1. #1
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    Default Easy high-protein meals for people (HR, I swear!)

    I am trying to get back into shape for riding after a long time not riding regularly, and while some of that is losing weight, some of it is also just trying to make sure I eat properly to support the fact that when I do start riding (or exercising to gain strength for riding) I'll need to build some muscle (we won't talk about my core strength right now.)

    Lately I've been keeping a food journal and - the amount of protein I get on average is horrible. It's not even the RDA, never mind being closer to the amount recommended by fitness experts for people trying to build muscle (which is 0.9g per pound of lean body mass, roughly - a lot more than the RDA.)

    I just don't think there's any way my current eating habits are going to support developing strength and muscle as necessary to ride properly, but I'm a bit stumped as to how to change things up - one of the reasons my diet tends to be kind of carb heavy is that carbs are generally easy foods (like grabbing a bagel) and protein requires cooking and planning... Nonetheless, it has to happen.

    (From previous experience trying to lose weight, I also know that I'm a lot more successful if I keep my calories up a bit higher than one might expect, but make sure to get enough protein - I build muscle really easily when my body is given incentive and the nutrition necessary to do so, but last time I lost weight and got into better shape successfully, I wasn't a full time college student with a mom with major health problems, so I had a LOT more time to actually cook proper meals regularly.)

    So. Anyone have any hints or tips? Suggestions? Recipes? Ready made products that aren't disgustingly vile?

    (I am so annoyed that so many products now have artificial sweeteners or splenda or stevia in them instead of sugar - better than high fructose corn syrup, sure, but artificial sweeteners give me migraines, and I can taste splenda and stevia and they taste bad to me, so. Blech.)

    (I'm hoping this counts as HR because I know a lot of folks who ride or have farms are pretty busy, and yet getting good nutrition IS key in being able to ride successfully, or do all that farm work. It is in many ways a sport, and sports nutrition is a big deal in other areas, so why not for riders?)
    Last edited by kdow; Mar. 3, 2011 at 08:07 AM. Reason: clarity.



  2. #2
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    Aug. 12, 2008
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    Default

    You could add protein shakes. Those are quick and easy.. not always yummy though.



  3. #3
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    I eat a Special K protein meal bar every day, sometimes two per day if I am busy. They have 10g of protein and taste good. They also have packets of powder that you can put into a water bottle to make protein water. I don't use those but my daughter loves them just for the taste, she doesn't know/care about the protein part.



  4. #4
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    Default

    It's a sport in most ways. And nutrition is important for fitness and stamina. If you want something to work at optimum performance, you put in the right fuel.

    (I hate the taste of Splenda and Truvia too, they have a funny aftertaste or something)

    It's actually nont as hard to up your *lean* protein as you'd think. It's just if you're not used to it it seems difficult.

    And the thing is you want lean protein. Sure everyone would love to snack on bacon 24/7 (mmmm, bacon) but that ain't good. Well, it's good. Just not good for you.

    Peanut butter in small amounts. It's really high fat, but great protein too. And change up your carbs. Have a half of a bagel, not a whole one. And have a whole grain/whole wheat bagel. Shmear some peanut butter on that instead of cream cheese or butter. Peanut butter on low salt Triscuits is also good.

    Buy cold cuts. Not everyone is into cold cuts, but if you splurge a little bit and buy the better brands you'll probably change your mind. Boar's Head really does taste a hella lot better than other brands. It's more expensive, but if you exercise portion control then it's not as expensive as you think. Their honey maple turkey breast and Ever roast chicken (make sure it's 'ever roast') is da bomb. The chicken tastes like it was carved right off of a whole bird, it's not like particle board meat. Have it thin sliced (not utlra thin) and have a 2-3 rolled up for a snack.

    Or make a "roll up" sandwich without bread. Buy a large leaf lettuce, add veggies you like inside (tomato, radish, cukes, etc) and a couple pieces of lunch meat and a little fat free dressing and roll it up like a wrap. The lettuce acts like bread.

    Buy whole wheat bread crumbs and chicken cutlets. Dip cutlets in egg, cover in crumbs and bake on 400. Makes nice cutlets without the fat of frying in oil. Those are great hot or cold. I make a batch every week and heat-n-eat or just snack on cold whenever I want one.

    Buy turkey drumsticks. That's an easy to eat on the run thing too, even if you look like Henry VIII walking around munching on a big turkey leg, LOL!

    Ground chicken or turkey for meatballs or burgers on whole wheat rolls.

    Keep nuts at home like cashews or almonds and have a handful of those for a snack.

    Swap out your carbs from simple to complex. Just think " no white." Nothing made with refined white flour. That goes for breads and pastas. Whole grains do make an enormous difference in getting fit.
    You jump in the saddle,
    Hold onto the bridle!
    Jump in the line!
    ...Belefonte



  5. #5
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    Dec. 12, 2004
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    Default

    For easy protein, turn to nuts. Easy to take with you, easy to munch on during class, and easy to "flavor" if you don't like munching on just plain nuts. (Tamari almonds? Mmmmm!) They're a great snack to have "on the go."

    Otherwise...eggs are great, and relatively cheap for college students. Find more ways to mix them into your diet...it doesn't have to be scrambled eggs three times a day, quiche and the like are delicious! (Although more time consuming, for sure.)

    Eggs merge me into my next suggestion....beans and spinach. Both high protein. Mix both into your eggs for a delicious breakfast omelette. Spend a weekend afternoon making up burritos and then freezing them....easily microwaved or warmed in the oven throughout the week.

    Dairy is high in protein too, and lots of other good things. Get yourself into the habit of eating yogurt. If those little single-serve things are the only thing you can handle, time wise, go for those. The cheaper option is to buy the quarts of yogurt and then mix in your own toppings. The texture of plain yogurt makes me gag, but once mixed in with some crunchy granola it's much easier to handle.

    Meat and fish provide lots of protein too, but I've been a lifelong vegetarian so I'm afraid I can't help you with suggestions there!

    I hear you on the artificial sweeteners. There have been studies done that show that like one in a thousand people's taste buds react to those differently than everyone else's, and they taste bitter/gross. I'm one of those people, glad you are too! No matter what I'm eating I can taste them and it ruins the whole meal! I stay farrr away from them! (And honestly, regular sugar in moderation is better for you than all that artificial nonsense anyway.)



  6. #6
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    Nov. 4, 2003
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    Default

    A great high-protein drink for breakfast is a Bolthouse's Mocha Cappucino

    10g of Protein per 8oz serving.
    Low Fat
    No Added Sugars.
    No preservatives and nothing artificial.


    Tastes awesome!!!!

    I'll often have one of those and a Luna Lemon Zest bar for Breakfast.... another 9gms of protein
    <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- "When they try to tell you these are your Golden years, don't believe 'em.... It's rust."



  7. #7
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    Feb. 23, 2005
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    Default Eat mor chickn

    I eat a lot of chicken, lucky for me I like it

    String cheese makes a good protein snack

    For breakfast I will eat a microwave omlett using free range eggs....supposedly better than the store brand. I'll add mozarella cheese and cooked mushrooms or sausage or asparagus or broccoli or peppers, whatever's leftover.

    To mocrowave an omlett break 3 eggs into a shallow microwave safe bowl and beat them with a bit of water. Add your cooked filling and microwave for a minute, stir and microwave for another 45 seconds to a minute.

    I often grill half a dozen chicken breasts. Sometimes I marinate them in Spedie sauce, or buttermilk and black pepper or my new favorite, adobo. Get a can of chipotle chilies in adobo sauce. For some reason it is in the Spanish section of our grocery store. Blend it with the juice of one or 2 limes 1 large onion and a seeded jalapeno pepper. Divide this into fourths, freeze 3 of the fourths and blend 3/4 cups mayonaise with the remaining fourth. Marinate your chicken breasts with that then grill them. Also grill several peppers and sliced onions . Serve as is with salsa, cheese and sour cream, use the peppers and onions in an omlett, cut up the cold breasts and use on salad, or reheat with a jar of alfredo, especially the Clasico Alfredo with sun dried tomatoes.

    Or marinate the chicken in buttermilk with ground black pepper and garlic. This is good with asparagus.

    Grill a piece of salmon and serve over salad or asparagus. Leftover salmon is also good in omlettes or over salad
    I wasn't always a Smurf
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  8. #8
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    Apr. 16, 2009
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    Default

    I'm not one to be giving nutritional advise but you may want to check out the Body for Life/Bill Phillips website.

    Of all the diets in the world, I like this concept best because the focus is exercise/nutrition as opposed to restricted dieting and cutting calories.

    There are some recipes on this page that are easy...

    http://www.transformation.com/pages/nutrition/recipes

    You can check out the concepts from the links but strength training is an integral part of the plan.



  9. #9
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    Sep. 7, 2009
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    Default

    Have you ever tried one of the "fix your meals ahead" places like Let's Dish? When I was in Baltimore, we treated everyone on their birthday. You pick the menu items you want to make and package them for the freezer. It takes about 2 hours (you can bring wine ) and we always had a lot of fun. I packaged mine for meals for 2 or 3.

    Then, you can microwave or throw in the oven...add a salad and instant dinner.

    We have a lot of salads. You can buy the pre-cooked chicken and have a chicken caeser, mexican, whatever. Doesn't take long either.

    Hardboiled eggs, if you like them, are great on the run too.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant



  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by MistyBlue View Post
    Swap out your carbs from simple to complex. Just think " no white." Nothing made with refined white flour. That goes for breads and pastas. Whole grains do make an enormous difference in getting fit.
    Oh, man, this is one of the harder ones for me, and I've been working on it a while. Weight issues aside, refined carbohydrates really clearly make my arthritis worse in the next 24 hours or so, pretty consistently, so I'm trying really hard to eliminate them from my routine diet, but it's a struggle since so many convenience foods are full of them.

    (High fructose corn syrup, however, is even WORSE for my joints. My brother works in pharmaceutical research and last time I was visiting I mentioned it, and he said "oh, yeah, they give that to rats to mimic the symptoms of arthritis in them for testing" ... No wonder the stuff makes my joints so cranky.)

    So I remember for a while, and then I sort of 'fall off the wagon' and have to work to get back to it. It's a struggle.

    (I do, occasionally, PLAN to have refined carbohydrates, like a pizza or a slice of cake or something, because I don't think it's realistic to just totally ban a food entirely from your diet unless you're allergic to it or something of that nature, but there's a big difference between "I can take it easy this weekend, so I'll treat myself to some pizza and it won't matter if I'm a bit extra sore" and "crud, I'm in a hurry and I'm hungry, oh, hey, plain bagel, that'll work!" on a routine basis.)

    Cold cuts is a good idea, though. I'll have to experiment - I'm not really a lunch meat/sandwich person, but perhaps I can find a few varieties that I like. Or start trying to plan ahead a little when cooking does get done - roast two pieces of meat instead of one, to use the other sliced cold, that sort of thing. Hmm.

    Oh, and if anyone has any recommendations or recipes for fish - I'm allergic to shellfish, but I know fish is a good source of lean protein, but so far I haven't liked most of it that I've tried. (I'll eat canned tuna, but that's about it. Pretty limiting.) So if you have a fantastic fish recipe that even fish-haters love, please share.

    (Unless it involves salmon. Every single piece of salmon I've ever tried, regardless of if it was farmed or wild caught or what, has had this weird after taste that I just can't stand. I have given up on salmon.)



  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by LauraKY View Post
    Have you ever tried one of the "fix your meals ahead" places like Let's Dish? When I was in Baltimore, we treated everyone on their birthday. You pick the menu items you want to make and package them for the freezer. It takes about 2 hours (you can bring wine ) and we always had a lot of fun. I packaged mine for meals for 2 or 3.
    My mom and I went to a party someone threw at one once, and thought it was a neat idea, but the particular location was too far away to be practical, and then most of the ones around seemed to go away. I don't know if it was just market saturation - it seemed like a bunch of different chains doing the same thing opened at once - or if people in this area just aren't into that, or what.

    It was pretty handy, though. (Not necessarily cost effective compared to buying ingredients yourself, but when you factor in time... Plus, my parents 'buy' me dinner if I prepare it. So if I could find someplace like that around it might work out. I'll have to look and see what's still around and how my mom feels about them - she's on chemo so she's a bit leery of buffet type places, and I don't know if that would qualify - stuff is cooked after you put it all together, which would in theory kill anything.)



  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoForAGallop View Post
    I hear you on the artificial sweeteners. There have been studies done that show that like one in a thousand people's taste buds react to those differently than everyone else's, and they taste bitter/gross. I'm one of those people, glad you are too! No matter what I'm eating I can taste them and it ruins the whole meal! I stay farrr away from them! (And honestly, regular sugar in moderation is better for you than all that artificial nonsense anyway.)
    They just ruin the flavor of whatever they're in - all I end up tasting is the sweetener. Blech. I'd far rather just have sugar in moderation, like you say.

    The beans suggestion reminds me of a dish I used to make a huge batch of and freeze - a sort of Indian rice and lentils thing. If I did that with brown basmati rice it'd probably be a pretty reasonable meal, and I think that if you have enough lentils, you get a pretty decent protein content?

    Nuts, I may just have to learn to like. I am not a nut/seed person. (It's a texture thing.) But I know there's more and more evidence they're good for you. Maybe I can sneak them in somehow...



  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rbow View Post
    I'm not one to be giving nutritional advise but you may want to check out the Body for Life/Bill Phillips website.

    Of all the diets in the world, I like this concept best because the focus is exercise/nutrition as opposed to restricted dieting and cutting calories.

    There are some recipes on this page that are easy...

    http://www.transformation.com/pages/nutrition/recipes

    You can check out the concepts from the links but strength training is an integral part of the plan.
    Thanks. (I have Issues with dieting as a general concept. There's growing evidence that dieting the way most diets have you do it is so hard on your body, and it's such a huge industry... Off topic, but I get really frustrated by it all. )

    Some of those recipes do look interesting, though. Like the french toast - sometimes you do just feel like traditional breakfast food.



  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kat_Renee View Post
    You could add protein shakes. Those are quick and easy.. not always yummy though.
    I was pondering getting some plain unflavored whey powder and experimenting a bit to see if I could come up with something where I wouldn't have to mix up the shake and add flavoring every time. Maybe whey powder blended with some vanilla sugar for flavor?



  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChocoMare View Post
    A great high-protein drink for breakfast is a Bolthouse's Mocha Cappucino

    10g of Protein per 8oz serving.
    Low Fat
    No Added Sugars.
    No preservatives and nothing artificial.


    Tastes awesome!!!!

    I'll often have one of those and a Luna Lemon Zest bar for Breakfast.... another 9gms of protein
    Oh, those look interesting. Have you tried any other flavors of the drinks? (I'm tempted by the Vanilla Chai myself...)



  16. #16
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    Default protein fiend

    For dinners I do a lot of slow cooker meals with either beef or chicken. There is a thread somewhere on here with great ideas.

    I eat a Cliff bar for breakfast with a yogurt and sometimes a Boost + protein.

    Cold cuts are tasty but I avoid them as they have a lot of added crap. I usually cook extra meat on Sunday and freeze them in baggies. Piece of chicken or a steak with a salad for lunch. I add Chick Peas, cheese, and nuts or sunflower seeds to my salads for added protein and also because I hate salad so this makes it a bit more exciting.

    I am allergic to shell fish as well but I can eat Tuna although I hate it. I force myself to eat the odd Tuna salad sandwich.

    Not everyone likes it but I love Tofu. I make a baked veggie casserole with sauteed extra firm Tofu, carrots, sweet potato, broccoli, mushrooms and cauliflower with a dash of cayenne pepper and cream of mushroom soup. So delicious!! If you like Thai curry it is also fantastic with Tofu. Tofu is a great source of protein and it has far more possibilities than meat. Most people that hate it haven't really tried it.

    I usually take the time on Sunday to cook a large batch of soup. Bean and veggie soups mostly. I freeze individual servings and then can have a healthy bowl of soup with either my lunch of for a snack. My downfall with that is I add too much salt but my blood pressure is low so I do not sweat it too much.

    I used to do a lot of shakes but I find I just feel better when I try to get my protein from food.

    Also agree with all on nuts and eggs. Easy.
    "look deep into his pedigree. Look for the name of a one-of-a-kind horse who lends to his kin a fierce tenacity, a will of iron, a look of eagles. Look & know that Slew is still very much with us."



  17. #17
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    Someone mentioned single serve yogurt. Yogurt is awesome, love the stuff!

    But most of the prepackaged, fruit mixed in is very high in sugar! I used to think "Hey I'm buying Yoplait 99% fat free yogurt = I'm eating healthy." 27g of sugar in one of those babies! If you're after protein, greek yogurt is by far the best! IIRC, one serving (1/2c) has 54g protein in it!! I can't eat it plain, so I package my own using frozen whole mixed berries, chopped almonds and granola. Sometimes I add just 1/2tsp of real sugar (at 16g sugar a tbs) for sweetness, as the greek yogurt is very tangy.

    I'm trying to lose some fat and get fitter as well by eating healthier by eating real food, not diet prepackaged junk filled with multisyllabic chemicals. Someone else mentioned nuts, also high in protein and "good" fats. PB is my guilty pleasure, but I buy the "original" Smuckers All Natural (ingredients: peanuts, salt and oil) not the reduced fat, it's very tasty!

    Maybe you could make yourself some protein rich trail mix to keep in the car? Almonds, peanuts, whole grain cheerios, craisins/raisins, sesame crisps and other easy keeper, snacky stuff you enjoy.



  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heliodoro View Post
    Someone mentioned single serve yogurt. Yogurt is awesome, love the stuff!

    I can't eat it plain, so I package my own using frozen whole mixed berries, chopped almonds and granola. Sometimes I add just 1/2tsp of real sugar (at 16g sugar a tbs) for sweetness, as the greek yogurt is very tangy.
    I am a 'starving student' meaning that I dont have a lot of extra cash to spurge on great foods. but I LOVE greek yogurt, and I too find it a bit too tangy in the morning. Instead of mixing in sugar, use pure raw honey. this is to die for !!



  19. #19
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    I am living the high protein/low carb lifestyle I find it really easy and I have a TON of energy.

    I eat high protein all week and then I let myself splurge some on the weekends by maybe having a pasta dish or potatoes.

    I have eggs usually for breakfast with some green veggies. I usually have a salad with steak, chicken or seafood for lunch and similar for dinner. Personally I try to stay away from prepackaged foods because I don't like all the added stuff in them and fresh just tastes better.

    I think that the key to this kind of diet is variety. Do a google search for high protein diets and you will find a ton of excellent recipes
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  20. #20
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    I haven't read the whole thread yet, but I'm going to answer anyway

    Protein powder (whey), Walmart carries a very good brand that doesn't taste like total crap. It's about 250 cals for 2 scoops which have 56 g protein. It runs about $15 for 3 lbs. I'll find the actual brand name and post it when I get home.

    Nature's own makes a great double fiber bread that only has 50 cals a slice and tastes like real bread. It also has 5g of fiber per slice. You HAVE to check the label, because they make 2 "Double Fibers" one has 100 cals per slice.

    For snacks I like fake crab meat (yes, I'm odd, I know), boiled eggs, cottage cheese, and nuts.

    Good Luck

    LBR
    I reject your reality, and substitute my own- Adam Savage

    R.I.P Ron Smith, you'll be greatly missed



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