Macro Diet Plan: What to Expect After Eating Trifecta A La Carte

Emmie Satrazemis, RD, CSSD
     
Emmie Satrazemis, RD, CSSD
Emmie Satrazemis, RD, CSSD

Looking to lose more body fat, gain some serious lean mass, or maybe you're just looking to meal prep like a boss? If any of those things sound up your alley, Trifecta A La Carte proteins, starches, and veggies are the perfect mix and match for your needs. 

bodybuilding meal plan delivery

By using only the highest quality, most nutrient dense proteins, fats and carbs we could find, we've created the personalized, macro optimized diet of your fitness dreams. No seriously, this stuff is pretty great.

But don't just take our word for it, we've helped thousands of customers master their meal plans and achieve their goals. And we work with numerous athletes who rely on their physique to pay the bills. Many of whom have done so using Trifecta A La Carte foods. 

"Trifecta is the only pre-made meal delivery program I can confidently recommend that my athletes eat up until the day of their competition. The proteins are so clean, so high quality, and not loaded with sodium and junk like some other options out there. Some of the best bodybuilders in the world are eating Trifecta food during training and the same day they get on stage". - Matt Daniels, professional bodybuilding coach 

So how does it work and when will you get a six pack? Great questions! Let's break it down and take a look at what you can expect after customizing your nutrition meal plan using Trifecta macro meal delivery. 

Counting Macros For Weight Loss and Muscle Gain

While healthy eating and cutting calories is the key to shedding pounds, supporting more specific fitness goals can be accomplished through counting macronutrients.

Athletes and fitness enthusiasts have long relied on adequate balance of macros to optimize training, performance and recovery. You see, in order to gain muscle mass, you must increase your calorie intake, but eating more calories can also cause fat gain if you aren't choosing the right foods (1). And protein and carb intake and timing are crucial to overall performance (2).

Counting macros is basically just organizing your calories into three nutrient categories: protein, fats and carbohydrates. Since these three nutrients supply nearly all of the calories you get from food – alcohol is the fourth macro, and also provides calories (7 calories per gram) - you can use this method to count your calories and balance your nutrition. Pretty efficient!

Protein and carbs both supply four calories per gram, and fat is the most calorically dense macro at nine calories a gram.

Macros-Trifecta-04

How to Count Macros Using Trifecta

Learning how to count macros is easy once you understand what foods count as a protein, carb, or fat choice. Or you can just use a macro friendly app like Trifecta that does most of the work for you.

To make things even easier, Trifecta meals are macro aligned to provide the following balance, depending on which meal plan you choose:

  • 4 to 6oz of protein
  • 4-6oz of starch
  • 4-8oz of vegetables

With added seasonings and a small amount of oil, these averages will get you roughly:

  • P: 20 to 40g
  • C: 30 to 65g
  • F: 10 to 20g
  • 300 to 600 calories

If you really love the clean or paleo recipes, but need a little more protein, you can double up on meat or fish with an added A La Carte option.

trifecta wild caught salmon

Or if you have specific fitness goals in mind or are looking to have more control over your entire macro intake, A La Carte is the best plan for you. You can portion out your own grains/potatoes, veggies and protein as you wish.

"I mainly buy protein from the A La Carte menu so that I can supplement my combinations of carbs and fats every week. Trifecta truly helps me get enough protein in one day and has saved me so much time—it’s great to be able to change up my diet every so often and so easily. Since everything is portioned out so nicely, I don’t have to spend a lot of time shopping at the grocery store, then going home to prepare what I buy. I’m also grateful that I don’t have to measure anything out anymore!" - Hope Leng, Davis, CA

 

How Fast Can You Lose Fat Using A La Carte?

Okay, let's talk results. Theoretically, it takes cutting 3,500 calories to lose one pound of fat. But this is not a perfect science and cutting 500 calories a day through diet and exercise does not always equal one pound of fat loss per week. Not to mention it may take you some time to get your ideal calorie and macro balance in place.   

Fat loss is only achieved through time and consistency. You should not expect to see results on day one, and for many, even one week is pushing it. There are a number of factors that will affect how quickly and efficiently your body starts burning fat, including:

  • Your Starting Weight. Your body fat percentage is a major influence over how quickly and efficiently you can burn fat. Having a lot of fatty tissue in the first place can help you lose weight more quickly when you start making drastic changes. Reason being, your resting metabolic rate is higher than it would be at a leaner size and you burn more calories exercising at a higher weight. If you're in the same boat as most of our A La Carte clients, you'll know that losing losing those last 5 pounds may take a different approach than the first 10 to 20 pounds. This is where diet may need to get extra strict, making A La Carte a good fit for anyone in these last stages of weight loss.
  • Your Previous Diet. The more you are able to take away, the more results you are going to see and the sooner - it's much easier to cut 500 to 1,000 calories a day from an already high calorie diet. If you've been dieting for a while now, you may not get results as fast as someone who is able to make drastic changes. And if you're not eating enough, bumping up your calorie intake or shifting your calories based on your workouts may be one way to get your metabolism up and running again (3). A La Carte options allow you to adjust you macros day to day so you can up your carbs on heavy training days and cut them on rest days. 
  • Fitness Regimen. If you are not incorporating certain types of exercise into your routine, you could be missing out on some serious benefits. While cardio is great for heart health and calorie burn, weight lifting and high intensity training could be what you've been missing to burn more fat (4,5). 

Remember, weight loss and fat loss are different. Weight loss includes a reduction in water, fatty tissue and lean mass. Whereas with fat loss, sometimes the numbers on the scale go up with increased muscle mass. It is a change in body composition that you are striving for, not just shedding pounds. 

For most, you can expect to start seeing some results after a few weeks, but it may take you some time - a few months or longer - to reach your goals. This is normal. Just stick with it, and aim for consistency not perfection. Just take it from Daulton who dedicated himself to making a life change and lost 25 pounds in eight months. 

Daulton Beam abs

 

How Fast Can You Gain Muscle Using A La Carte?

The only way to gain weight is to increase your calorie intake. And balancing the quality of your diet with appropriate training and how fast you are gaining mass can impact how much muscle vs. fat you are putting on. 

Just like with weight loss, you probably don't want to gain more than a pound or two a week - increasing your calorie intake by 5 to 10% is usually sufficient to help increase mass. And you will, again, need to theoretically add 3,500 calories per pound. But how much muscle you can actually gain and how fast depends on a number of factors including your age, genetics and hormonal balance.

Although the research in the area is fairly limited, there are a few proven ways you can help promote faster growth:

  • Use Your Muscles. Putting wear and tear on your muscles and keeping them active is one way to make them grow bigger. Any type of stress through exercise or physical movement causes minor damage in your tissue that the body will repair. Any soreness you feel after a workout is partly due to this. And because your body is smart and efficient it will rebuild these tears to be bigger and stronger for next time. And while any strength training will help build muscle, how you train could be a determining factor for how big you can get (6,7).
  • Sleep. Getting a good night's rest plays an important role in recovery and also growth. During the first few hours of sleep, your body releases human growth hormone which is crucial to building lean mass. But the process requires available protein. According to some research, consuming a long acting protein like casein before bed allows amino acids to be more readily available for muscle synthesis (8). You also want to aim to get at least 7 hours of sleep each night for better recovery and a stronger workout next time. 
  • Eat More Protein. Protein intake is one area that is still widely debated in the bodybuilding community, and recommendations can vary from one source to the next. But with sufficient energy intake, some studies suggest getting a little more protein in your diet, up to 1.0 to 1.5 grams per pound of body weight, can support building lean mass (9,10). And while some research indicates eating more than 0.8g/pound does not results in any additional benefits, additional intake has not shown to be harmful either (11). By rule of thumb, you can aim to get at least 1g of protein per pound of lean mass - estimate your body fat percentage, calculate how much of you weight is from fatty tissue and the remaining amount is your fat free mass (FFM). 
    • Example:
      • A 200 pound male with 10% body fat has 20 pounds of fatty tissue (200 x 0.10 = 20)
      • This leaves 180 pounds of FFM, which would be 180g of protein per day. 

 

A La Carte allows you to easy add more nutrient dense proteins to any meal to make sure you are always hitting your needs. 

Take it from Shawn Rhoden, Trifecta athlete and 2018 Mr. Olympia!

Shawn-Rhoden-Trifecta-1

 

Not All Macros are Created Equal

So, can't I just eat all of my favorite foods like bacon and cake, as long as it fits my macros? 

Not exactly. Food still matters. 

Getting your macro balance on point is a great start to getting the results you are looking for, but the quality of your choices can make a big difference in how quickly you get there and how painful the process is. No matter which way you slice it, the food you eat matters when it comes to your overall health, daily happiness and longevity. 

There are a lot of non-calorie factors about food you should be considering. Like the amount of vitamins, minerals, and fiber--you know, the good stuff. As well as how heavily processed the food is and what is potentially being added to it - like artificial ingredients, preservatives, trans fats, sodium, sugar, hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides. 

Studies have suggested that your body burns twice as many calories digesting "clean" foods compared to heavily processed ones (12). And research continues to imply the quality of your choices is just as important as your overall calorie and macro balance when it comes to body composition and your health (13,14). 

 

What Makes Trifecta So Great? 

Trifecta maintains some of the strictest standards around when it comes to clean eating. We use only 100% organic, real food ingredients that have been shown to benefit health - with no added sugar or fat in our A La Carte. All proteins and vegetables are baked, and the carbs are steamed. 

trifecta macros meat veggies rice

Everything is very lightly seasoned so you can add your own seasonings or sauces or enjoy as is. Besides contributing to heart problems and high blood pressure, a diet high in sodium may also make you feel more bloated from water retention (15). A lot of other "clean" meal options can be high in sodium from added salt. And even simple proteins like chicken breast can be injected with a salt solution to add flavor and juiciness to the meat (16). We like to keep it as simple and pure as possible with nothing extra.  

Trifecta's seafood is wild caught and meats are true grass-fed. Why does this matter? Lean, grass-fed/wild-caught meat and fish are more nutrient dense, meaning you get more protein and nutritional benefits per calorie. 

“I'm a 50 year old strength sports competitor (Strongman and Power-lifting). I've been using Trifecta's bulk food plan since December 2016. I'd been tracking macros for a few years and had started a weekly food prep system. Trifecta makes it easy for me to include high-quality protein in my daily meals. The salmon is absolutely wonderful (dare I say addictive?), and the super-lean elk and venison help me regulate my fat intake while still getting plenty of protein.” Megan Martin, La Vista, NE. 

To learn even more about what makes our food so beneficial to your health, check out the science behind trifecta

Bottom line, not only can you expect an easier experience when it comes to counting macros and getting your diet looking right, but Trifecta uses evidence-based nutrition recommendations to get you the best quality foods possible. 

Ready to get started? Check out our A La Carte options and start building your next meal. Honestly, why wait? 

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