Clean Eating Plan {with a Sample 1,500 Calorie Daily Menu}

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If you were around at the beginning of this year, you’ll recall I started the year with a week-long series on Running/Working Out. Since I really committed to working out consistently over the last few months, I’ve lost 15 pounds and 10 inches. I got stuck in a plateau for about 6 weeks and decided to increase my running which really helped.

In fact, I’m seven weeks into training for my first half-marathon which I’ll run on Mother’s Day (bright and early at 6:30 am!). I’m using the Jeff Galloway training plan for those of you who are interested and I’m super impressed with it! I actually use the iPhone app and I’ve had great customer service from Lolo Fit, the company that produces the app.

We eat pretty healthy and choose a lot of organic items to begin with but I’ve been reading more and more about how what you eat is even more important than your workouts. Not too mention all the health benefits of eating mainly real foods, so I’ve decided to start “eating clean”. I’m using Livestrong’s Daily Plate to track my calories and I have it set with a goal of losing about 1.5 pounds a week, which means I need to eat about 1,500 calories a day (more on days I workout).

Here are the basics of eating clean (you can read about it more in depth at this great clean eating blog I follow, The Gracious Pantry).  You can also follow my Clean Eating Meal Ideas Pinterest Board, which I plan to focus on pinning more to in the coming weeks.

  • Cut out processed foods as well as fake sugars and artificial ingredients.  
  • Cut white flour and white sugar.
  • Eat mini-meals every 2-3 hours.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Eat a protein (i.e. lean meat, fish, greek yogurt), good carb (i.e. whole grains, veggies, fruit), and good fat in every meal.

Here is my typical daily plan (although I obviously change it up while staying within the basic plan/calories so I don’t get bored.  For example, subbing a different fruit or veggie in place of another)…

Clean Eating Meal Plan

  • On days I work out (4-5 days a week), I’ll add in some calories to account for that. I wear a heart rate monitor watch to know exactly how many calories I burn during a workout, often 400-1,000 depending on the length of my run.
  • My long runs happen twice a month right now so those are usually the days when I plan to have a “cheat meal”.
  • I’ve also cut out all wine and alcohol and usually opt for Pellegrino with Lime in a wine glass to cure that craving.
  • I only drink water (usually with lemon in it) or unsweetened tea and 1-2 cups of coffee per day.
  • I always carry an emergency on-to-go snack: one of my kids Clif Kids Z Bars (Organic and around 130 calories).
  • Mornings are busy for me with three little ones and I don’t have time to cook so I always have one of the Orgain Organic Ready-to-Drink Protein shakes listed in the meal plan.
  • As summer arrives, I’ll likely move from soups to salads and hot tea to cold tea. :)

Again, this is a plan for weight loss so it will change as I continue to lose weight and then go into a maintenance plan when I reach my goal (yay!).  Normally, I’ve been seeing about one pound per week a weight loss but now that I’ve focus on correct portion size and eating clean, I actually had a record week of 3.5 pounds.  Results are great motivation!

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About By Dawn Nicole

Dawn is the DIY & Lifestyle blogger/Graphic Designer behind By Dawn Nicole. She is a mom of 3 who believes in "throwing kindness around like confetti". While Dawn loves all things creative, she has a passion for hand-lettered typography. A clean-eating foodie who loves cooking as much as a a good long outdoor run, she believes in balance and rarely lets a day go by without dark chocolate and over-caffeinating. She is also a contributor to the Silhouette Blog, Capturing Joy with Kristen Duke, and The Pinning Mama .

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