1 week down in the 800 Gram Challenge on Keto – and it was pretty tough! Read below to see what I ate in week 1 of the 800 Gram challenge, what I learnt and my Keto 800 Gram Challenge Meal Plan for Week 2.
800 Gram Challenge – Week 2 Summary
- What is the 800 Gram Challenge?
- Challenges faced in week 1
- Lessons learnt from week 1
- Meal plan for Week 2
What is the 800 Gram Challenge?
The 800 Gram Challenge is a nutrition challenge developed by Optimize Me nutrition founder EC Synkowski.
I’ve written a more in-depth summary of the entire challenge in my Week 1 on The 800 Gram Challenge here – so I won’t bore you with the details all over again!
Challenges faced in Week 1
Well, it was pretty tough! I faced a few challenges, which I expected, but still managed to get my 800 grams of veggies in each day.
Challenge 1: Exhaustion and life getting in the way!
The hardest part was that I was moving house in Week 1 so three full days were pretty chaotic, between boxes everywhere, exhaustion and the lure of takeaway calling me.
While I stuck mostly to the plan I’d made, the biggest challenge came on Friday which was the big unpacking day.
We decided to get the old apartment cleaning done that same day, so after 2 full days of moving and then about 5 hours of cleaning I was exhausted. My plan for baked fish with broccolini just wasn’t going to cut it.
We agreed on takeaway and I went for my usual burrito salad from a great Mexican place, only to have them cancel the order saying they were out of stock of the salad ingredients.
Uh oh… I was getting HANGRY by this stage.
In the end I went with nachos with extra beans, lots of tomato and guacamole and some grilled corn.
Yep, lots of carbs there, but at least I was still getting my vegetables in ✅
(By the way…. corn chips are made of corn, right? Don’t worry, I didn’t count them 😆)
So the lesson is, have your meal plan for the challenge ready but don’t stress if you don’t stick to it exactly. Just have a few back ups up your sleeve!
Challenge 2: CARBS
The other big challenge was the carbs.
As expected, it’s really easy to meet the 800 gram vegetable/fruit goal if you have heavier or starchier fruit and veg.
In addition to the Mexican night where I no doubt ate lots of carbs (I’d estimate around 100 grams), I also had a banana before working out 3 times.
On the Thursday I had planned roast charcoal chicken with roast vegetables from a local takeaway store. I’d planned ahead what I was going to order so I could get all my vegetables and diversity in.
After the busiest moving day, we unfortunately found out the store was closed. This is becoming pretty common in the city as it’s getting so quiet for hospitality businesses due to the current lockdowns.
We found another charcoal chicken shop that was open but no roast veggies – only salads.
The best options I could find were a beetroot salad and a broad bean salad. When it arrived I was pleased to see they were LOADED with vegetables so I easily get my grams in, but they came with a lot of carbs as well.
Thankfully I probably needed it that day, having done about 25,000 steps while moving house – most of those while carrying boxes or other heavy things!
Challenge 3: Getting something orange in
As part of the 800 Gram challenge, each day there’s a bonus point available for an additional challenge for the week.
Week 1’s bonus point was for eating 50 grams of something orange.
Well, once I started looking into this I realised there are no orange things that suit the keto diet!!
I wonder if this is deliberate, as the challenge is about eating nutritious food and not being ‘scared’ of carbs and fruit.
I totally get this and support it, sometimes as Keto eaters we go a bit overboard with avoiding anything even moderately carby.
For this week I had made my huge batch of vegetable soup which included 250 grams of carrots, so over the 5 lunches it fit the bill.
If I didn’t have this soup though I would’ve been in a bit of trouble!
I also enjoyed a mandarine one day, and on Sunday had sweet potato in a roast vegetable frittata.
It always amazes me how sweet these foods taste when you don’t eat a lot of them. It makes me appreciate fresh fruit more than ever, and you don’t need a lot of it to stay satisfied.
Challenge 4: Resisting the temptation to workout every day for points
I am competitive and love gamification of ANYTHING.
You get a bonus point for completing a workout, and so actually letting myself NOT get points deliberately was tough.
How I have changed over the years, I actually WANTED to squeeze in a workout even on those busy moving days!
But we all know rest days are super important for your health, mental and physical.
So, letting myself ‘off the hook’ and having 2 rest days was important.
We still got in long walks on these days anyway which was great to enjoy the fresh air and explore a new area.
Lessons Learnt from Week 1 on the Keto 800 Gram Challenge
Throughout the week I’ve been keeping notes in my phone of lessons learnt during the week.
I enjoyed this journalling style of reviewing my day and how I felt.
A few lessons came from the challenges faced above, which leads me to the most important lesson so far…
Lesson #1 – Have a Back Up Plan
The takeaway you’d carefully planned out is closed.
The supermarket is out of something you wanted.
You are EXHAUSTED or sick.
Something spoils and can’t be used.
Life gets in the way.
Anything can happen, but having a back up plan or ready meal to fall back on is essential. Something you know you can grab and get in you when you really need it.
Lesson #2 – Yep, there’s going to be carbs
They are basically impossible to avoid on this challenge.
If I took out the bananas for my workouts, I would be averaging around 40 – 50 grams of carbs.
If I wasn’t exercising and walking as much as I am, this would probably push me out of ketosis.
And that’s ok.
This challenge is about changing my mindset on vegetables and fruit, getting diversity in and consuming more nutrient dense foods than before.
And in that sense, it’s totalling winning.
I’m not going to gain back 25kgs by eating a banana every couple of days.
Lesson #3 – The Scales…
Well, this is a big one.
Probably the biggest lesson I’ve had in years when it comes to my health…
I’ve used the Fitbit Aria 2 scales for years, they are fully digital and actually sync your weight to the Fitbit app.
I have weighed almost every day for years. I love the data more than anything, seeing how my weight fluctuates from day to day actually gives me a bit of peace of mind weirdly.
When we set up the new apartment, they wouldn’t connect to the wifi and sync the data.
I tried everything and it’s apparently a known issue with the scales with no fix.
So…. the scales are in the bin.
I feel pretty weird about this, having had that data supporting my health decisions for years now.
But at the end of the day, I know when I am eating well and exercising, my weight takes care of itself.
I know how much I need to eat and what I need to eat.
The scales tend to just give me a guilty feeling after an indulgent dinner rather than motivation.
I also sometimes get this compulsion to sabotage my efforts – when I weigh in at a particularly low weight, I have an overwhelming urge to eat EVERYTHING.
Rewarding a good result with bad food – yep that doesn’t make sense!
So, the scales are in the bin.
Let’s see how this goes and if I cave and go back to them – but I already feel pretty liberated!
My Keto 800 Gram Challenge Meal Plan for Week 2
So I’ve learnt some lessons and faced some challenges, so for week 2 I am ready and armed with my Keto 800 Gram challenge meal plan.
Batch cooking my lunches took the decision making and planning out of the weekdays, so I could do my lunch time workout, gobble my soup down in 10 minutes and back to work in no time. Albeit a bit red faced.
I’ve also used Week 1 Sunday night’s vegetable frittata for lunch on Monday and Tuesday to keep things simple.
The bonus point for Week 2 is to get 50 grams of leafy greens in a day – easy! I love leafy greens on the side of just about any plate.
Lastly, I’m planning a big roast lamb on Sunday night to make leftovers for the next week’s lunches. I can’t handle a roast without potatoes and pumpkin so that will be a higher carb day.
Week 2 Meal Plan – 800 Gram Challenge on Keto
|Monday||Roast Veg Frittata + 50g leafy greens (sweet potato, onion, broccoli, goats cheese, spinach, eggplant, capsicum)||Lemon baked fish with cauli mash and broccolini||9|
|Tuesday||Roast Veg Frittata + 50g leafy greens (sweet potato, onion, broccoli, goats cheese, spinach, eggplant, capsicum)||Butter chicken, cauliflower rice + big side of broccoli||9|
|Wednesday||Roast chicken and salad (leafy greens, cucumber, tomato, avocado, boiled eggs||Steak, cheesey cauliflower bake, steamed broccolini||6|
|Thursday||Roast chicken and salad (leafy greens, cucumber, tomato, avocado, boiled eggs||Shakshuka – eggplant, onion, tomatoes, leafy greens on side||7|
|Friday||Roast chicken and salad (leafy greens, cucumber, tomato, avocado, boiled eggs||Mustard chicken tray bake (cauliflower, beans)||6|
|Saturday||Eggs, smashed avo, 50 g spinach and broccoli||Naked burgers – leafy greens, tomatoes, onion, avocado||7|
|Sunday||Scrambled eggs with avo, 50 g spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms||Roast lamb, potato, pumpkin, parsnip, broccolini||8|
The snacks from last week worked well, so this week I’ll have:
- Celery sticks and avocado dip or peanut butter
- Post workout banana protein shake
- Pre-workout banana
End of week summary – 800 Gram Challenge on Keto Week 2
Once this week is over, I’ll come back on here to update how the first week went.
Have you done the 800 Gram Challenge on Keto?
Comment below if you have done the 800 gram challenge, or you have any tips or recipes that would suit!
Not sure how to start Keto?
Here’s some resources to help you!
- What is Keto?
- What Can I eat on Keto?
- How Much Should I Eat on Keto?
- What To Expect On Keto
- Ketogenic 21 Day Meal Plans
- Preparing for the Ketogenic Diet EBook
- Understanding Net Carbs and Total Carbs