When you follow a diet plan, you expect it to be far more healthy and far less fattening than the grub you were eating before.
Especially when that plan is called Lean In 15.
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So when some bright spark compared one of Joe Wicks’ recipes to a KFC meal and found that it contained five times the amount of fat and 620 more calories, eyebrows were raised.
Omnipresent fitness guru Joe Wicks’ eating plan is designed to be used in conjunction with his intense workouts, and among his vast portfolio of delicious sounding 15-minute suppers is a recipe for Cheesy Chicken Chorizo and Spinach, which comes in at a hefty 1120 calories per serving.
And Apex Fitness Systems – a team of ‘body transformation and performance specialists’ – have taken to Facebook to draw attention to the dense calorific content by comparing the dish to a KFC Rice Box.
‘Fast food can never be a better choice than a home-cooked meal with fresh ingredients right? In most cases, no,’ they say.
‘However, no amount of fresh ingredients can outweigh 1120 calories and 76 grams of fat in a single meal for one.’
They also claim that the Lean In 15 books don’t list calorie and nutritional information for individual dishes.
‘Calories ALWAYS matter when it comes to losing weight.
‘Fresh, home cooked meals should be the cornerstone of any healthy diet, but if you don’t pay attention to what’s going into your meals, you could end up spinning your wheels for a long time.’
Yet surely, as the omnipresence King of HIIT, Joe would know what he’s doing – it’s all part of the plan that he devised and follows after all. HIIT is the sort of intense training that requires quite a calorie dense diet to speed recovery along.
Apex Fitness Systems, however, insist that the workouts that calories burnt during one of Joe’s HIIT sessions ‘wouldn’t make a dent in the 1120 calorie meal above.
But Joe Wicks fans have come to their great, lean leader’s defence, pointing out that his plan does in fact work.
What’s in Joe’s cheese chorizo chicken dish?
½ tbsp coconut oil
75g chorizo, finely diced
½ red onion, diced
1 x 240g skinless chicken breast fillet, cut into 1cm slices
salt and pepper
4 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
3 big fistfuls of baby spinach leaves
1 ball of mozzarella, torn into chunks
20g pine nuts
‘Risky marketing strategy, not sure criticising other in the industry reflects well on your brand?’ said one.
‘This post is a heap of rubbish, promoting yourself while rubbishing someone else’s plan is total bollocks. There’s a reason Joe Wicks is successful…it’s because his plan works!’ wrote another.
While Apex Fitness Systems might have a point about calories, they do fail to show how much of the KFC meal’s 61g of carbohydrate is sugar. As we’re all being continuously told that it’s sugar that is the main cause of obesity, it seems odd not to include it.
But the point is, calories and our notion of healthy eating don’t always match up.
Joe Wicks’ recipe looks like it offers a lot more in the way of nutrients (it’s got four times the protein of the KFC Rice Box for a start) and there’s there’s no doubt that a homemade meal is probably going to be better for you in the long run than a KFC.
But eating this sort of meal on the reg probably would mean never skipping a gym day again.
Food for thought.
Joe Wicks says…
In an interview with Men’s Health, Joe was key to point out that the key to being lean is balance.
‘You can still be fit, healthy and fun, you don’t have to be boring. You can still have a drink. Don’t obsess over calories and weigh all your food. I encourage that for new clients to get used to portion control, but it’s just about balance and consistency.
‘It can get a bit confused: on the book it says “eat more, exercise less, lose fat”. But I’m not saying exercise less, I’m saying exercise for less time and more intensely. It’s working because people are always saying they can’t believe they can eat so much food and still lose weight, they wish they’d known about it sooner.’