How to Get Ripped with Food: A 7-Day Plan

You’ll never get ripped without changing your diet. It’s as simple as that. So what changes should you make? This is where you’ll get a million different answers. It seems that every week a new book, article, or diet comes out claiming there’s a better way to lose fat. But you know it’s the same ol’ B.S.

I can sum it up for you right now. The key to losing fat super fast and finally get the lean body you want hinges on vegetables.

Yuck. Vegetables. Who likes them, anyway? Not me. If I never had another one again it’d be too soon.

But vegetables are loaded with all the stuff you probably don’t get enough of such as vitamins, minerals, fiber and phytonutrients while being low in the stuff you probably are getting too much of: calories. Whenever a client needs to lose fat like yesterday, I put him/her on a diet that consists mainly of veggies. It not only works for them, it also always works for me.

And let me tell ya, it works fast!

However, like I mentioned, most people don’t like vegetables. So the question is: How bad do you want to lose fat? If you’re sick of feeling like your fat loss is going nowhere, it’s time to get focused and just do the vegetable thing. The good news is that you can eat any vegetables from the following list in any amount. Just eat until you’re full four times a day. After day 1, the diet will slightly shift toward protein sources.

Trust me when I say that this is one of the fastest, healthiest ways to boost fat burning to the max. It’s not easy, but it works incredibly well.

Vegetables to choose from: artichoke, asparagus, beets, bok choy, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, green beans, kale, mushrooms, okra, onions, peppers, spinach, squash, tomato. These can be eaten raw, steamed, or in a big salad drizzled with a little olive oil and/or balsamic vinegar.

DAY 1: At 8am, noon, 4pm, and 8pm eat as much of any vegetable as you want, in any combination. You don’t have to eat at those exact times, but spread out the four meals as evenly as possible. Drink 100 ounces of water.

DAYS 2-4: Eat vegetables at the same four times each day but add in 20 grams of protein from fish, chicken, lean beef, turkey, eggs or seafood at 8am and 4pm meals. This equates to 3-4 ounces of fish, chicken, lean beef, turkey, or seafood or 3-4 whole eggs at those two meals. Drink 100 ounces of water.

DAYS 5-7: At 8am, noon, 4pm, and 8pm eat vegetables in any combination and quantity and have 20 grams of protein (3-4 ounces) from fish, chicken, lean beef, turkey, seafood or 3-4 eggs at each meal. Drink 100 ounces of water.

What about supplements? For one week I recommend you avoid any of them, even after lifting weights. This should not be a week where you’re looking to achieve a new one-rep max in your lifts. Think of this as a detox program for your body and organs with the side-effect being rapid fat loss.

On the morning of day 1 take your weight and waist measurement (around your navel) and repeat those measurements on the morning of Day 8 – the day you return to your normal schedule.

I’m challenging you to do it for one week. Don’t worry about anything else. Just do this and post your results on this blog. Heck, take before/after pics and I might use them for a future blog.

The grass-fed whey can be used in place of the protein foods listed above. You can use 2 scoops of plain whey for each protein serving, and then you’ll have it for the rest of the month after you come off the 7-Day Plan.

Fast fat loss doesn’t have to be complicated. Give this 7-day plan a try and you’ll see how effective a simple plan can be to finally bring those cuts out of hiding.

Stay focused,

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142 thoughts on “How to Get Ripped with Food: A 7-Day Plan

  1. Hi Chad,

    I did Body of F.I.R.E. from September to December last year. Great training plan. I lost 22lbs in 13 weeks, something I’d been trying to do with my own plans for a couple years. One of the big things I changed while doing BOF was cutting the carbs the majority of the week. So my lunch was usually a big salad of one tomato, 1/3 of a cucumber and a couple of handfuls of spinach slathered in EVOO and balsamic vinegar with some protein as well (that varied by day). Simple to prepare, I ate it daily (and still do).

    Now, I’m doing Get Big in Huge in a Hurry (about half way through)(also, can you tell I’m a fan?), but I plan on doing a leaning out program afterward to get rid of the chub (I screwed up my mass gain diet in the first few weeks).

    OK, all that jabbering for my question: for this 7-day plan, since you didn’t mention it, I assume when you say veggies only, you really mean veggies only, no “dressing” right?

    CW: As mentioned, you can drizzle a salad with a little olive oil and/or vinegar, but that’s it.

  2. Am I reading this correctly? Days 2-4 I am eating 40 oz of protein per day. 20 oz at each meal. Days 5-7 I am eating 20 oz of protein. 20 oz divided between all the meals.

    CW: Days 5-7 is 20 grams at each meal: 80 grams total.

  3. Hey Chad, great article as usual. So I want to do this during spring break and I had a few questions.

    1) could I have a couple of v8 juices for some or all of the four meals? I ask cuz I’m getting my wisdom teeth out and i’m not sure if I’ll be able to chew the veggies

    2) not to get all graphic but will this affect my stool? I don’t want to have to struggle when I’m dropping some dumpage haha.

    CW: It’s better to juice veggies, but V8 is ok. If you avoid eating veggies completely, it could affect your stool since you’re getting virtually no fiber. Wait until your teeth are fixed to try this plan.

  4. Great stuff Chad,
    I know you did an experiment with veggie juicing a while back-would you suggest juicing any of these veggie meals or just eat them ? Reasons? Cheers:


    CW: Eat them. More nutrients and more fiber if you do.

  5. How much fat percentage can you expect to drop in 7 days from this diet? Is this something that you can do week after week or is that to much?

    CW: Start with one week before you worry about anything else. How much you’ll lose depends on how much you have to lose. Some people will lose 7 pounds of pure fat.

  6. I see you can eat as much as you want, but is there
    A minimum amount of veggies you should
    Be eating to ensure you are getting enough?

    CW: Eat until you’re full. That’s how you know if it’s enough.

  7. I’m going to give it a try. I’ve already dumped the white carbs since the first of the year and increased the veggies, hopefully this won’t be too much of a stretch. How often can this be repeated to get the best results?

    Thanks for the great advice.

    CW: Once a month is usually sufficient.

  8. CW,

    I just wanted to make sure that on days 5-7 you really meant 20 ounces of meat per meal, ie 80 ounces total for the day? That’s 5 pounds of meat. If this is correct, is this raw weight or cooked weight since that is a significant difference.

    I look forward to trying this. I was seeing great progress on the Body of FIRE program until I had shoulder surgery and because of the lack of cartilage in my shoulder my doctor doesn’t want me doing any frontal plane pressing movements.

    As always I enjoy reading your blog posts, and have been a faithful follower since you originally came out with your ABBH and Strength Focused Mesocylce workouts on T-Nation.


    CW: 20 grams per meal.

  9. Is it 20 oz per meal or 20 oz for the 4 meals? No fruits?

    CW: 20 grams per meal. No fruit.

  10. So simple, yet elegant. What would you suggest someone do to follow up this 7-day plan? Can I still take my fish oil (yes I know you said no supplements)?

    CW: Give your body a break from all supps for one week.

  11. I like your recommendations, here. I’m on a slightly looser diet for body recomposition.

    I eat 4 times a day and have a protein serving the size of two fists for each meal. That’s about 6oz of protein.

    I add as much vegetables as I need to it, or substitute it with a handful of nuts or a serving of fruit on training days.

  12. CW,

    do you mean 20 grams of meat/fish/etc or 20 gram of protein from fish/meat/etc for each meal?

    CW: 20 grams worth of protein. That’s usually about 3-4 ounces of fish/meat/chicken/etc.

  13. Hi Boss!
    What about the training during this 7-days plan ?

    CW: Honestly, you’re probably best off training instinctively for those 7 days. Just do whatever you feel like (weights, cardio, etc) but stay active.

  14. Hey Chad,

    With the exception of the olive oil you’ve restricted any dietary fat from this food plan.

    I’m curious what the reason(s) for this might be?


    CW: I’m the last person to be fat phobic, but this is more of a 7-day “fast,” using that term as loosely as possible. This is for giving your organs and break and flooding your body with nutrients in veggies. Nothing else matters during those 7 days.

  15. In your experience is muscle loss not a significant problem due to the fact that this is only a one week diet? Is the protein consumption so low to just exaggerate fat loss? Finally, how would training be in this week? Thanks

    CW: Muscle loss is not a problem with 7 days of this plan. Once you return to your regular diet/training plan and your glycogen levels return to normal you’ll see that you didn’t lose any. In fact you’ll look bigger because you’ll be leaner.

  16. I guess that’s an occupational hazard for you: dumbasses not reading what you wrote. 🙂 My bad.

    Another question occurred to me: I go into Phase 2a of Get Big a week from now. Could I do this diet plan during that phase without impacting the main goal of Get Big, which is, um, getting big? I’m eager to give this a shot.

    CW: This 7-day veggie “fast” is not conducive to gaining muscle. If you do this eating plan, take a week off from that phase and return to it 7 days later.

  17. Hi Chad,

    Sounds great and easy to follow but… Am I reading right — not any source of protein on the first day??? Isn’t that counterproductive?

    CW: No protein on the first day. This gives your organs a break and actually makes you assimilate more protein later in the week.

  18. This sounds like a pretty simple program to follow for 7 days. Does the amount of grams for protein apply to women as well?

    CW: Yes.

  19. Hi Chad,

    Thanks for this – will definitely be trying this out. One question, do you have a list or a site where I can see how much I need to eat (lean meat, eggs, fish etc) to consume 20g protein per meal.
    Food isn’t labelled properly in all four corners of the globe unfortunately.


    CW: One ounce of chicken/lean beef/fish/etc is 6-7 grams of protein. One whole egg is the same. So you need 3-4 ounces or 3-4 eggs. Nothing wrong with a little extra (28 grams of protein instead of 20 in a meal).

  20. This is why I refer to you as the fitness guru and recommend you consistently. Great idea. I will be starting it on Monday as I have about 4% BF that I want to strip off. I may cycle this in once every 2 months as a detox. Being Paleo for nearly 2 years now makes this a pretty easy way for me to lose the few pounds. Thanks! Yale

  21. Chad,

    I’m currently finishing up phase 2 of Get Big. Would it be a good idea to follow this diet plan for the unloading week of Get Big phase 2? It would fit in nicely for that workout week coupled with the lower weights of the workout plan. Thoughts?

    HIAH is going very well by the way. It’s only been 7 weeks of Get Big and I’m in the best shape of my life at 30 (just turned on Monday)!

    CW: Yes, this is fine with an unloading week.

  22. I’m a big fan of yours from over at T-Nation and I own Huge in a Hurry.

    I use an emulisifier for veggies, I’m guessing thats fine because it keeps everything in the juice.

    Also you aluded to no PR’s that week, makes sense. How about 3 days of light-medium weights with low volume? Is muscle loss common on this diet?

    CW: Muscle loss isn’t a problem. A plan like this actually helps your body assimilate more protein over time. That workout plan sounds fine.

  23. I’m about to wrap up the V-Diet(love your work out plan for it) I was then going to transition into Huge in a hurry. Is there a certain type of workout that would be best to follow during this 7 day veggie marathon?

    CW: Just keep it light. Body weight exercises work well along with some cardio. After the week is over, follow the nutrition and training in HIAH. You can skip Get Ready program and start on any other program that looks good to you.

  24. Are frozen veggies that are microwaved OK?

    CW: That’s ok. Not as good as raw, though.

  25. Chad,

    I’m wondering if a scoop of organic/natural whey (23g protein) is a viable sub for some of the meat eating in this week regime.


    CW: It’s not as good as whole food protein, but if it’s your only option you can use it as infrequently as possible.

  26. You don’t list lettuce in the vegtable list but mention salads. Is lettuce (red leaf, spring mix, etc.) ok for this?

    CW: Of course, any vegetable will work. But spinach is a much better option.

  27. Is black coffee ok on this?

    CW: It’s not recommended. But if you can’t survive without it, one cup per day is ok.

  28. I am 4 weeks out from a bikini show – would you recommend I complete this 7 days now or continue following my current plan(carb cycling)?

    thanks in advance for your help!

    CW: Yes, it’ll only help.

  29. CW,
    In the list of veggies for this cleanse phase you don’t list any potatos. I can see not using white potato, but how about sweet potato? Your thoughts?


    CW: No sweet potatoes – too much starch.

  30. Chad, how about throwing some organic green tea into mix or is it no even to that?

    CW: Green tea is ok.

  31. I was just wondering if other vegetables would be ok as well. Things like cucumber, zucchini, egg plant, kidney beans and lentils for instance? Or is there any specific reason why you can only eat the vegetables on your list?

    CW: Those are fine. Any veggies will work.

  32. Hi Chad:
    I work out and I’m a home gardener so I wanted to point something out about vegetables and fruits that may help your readers. The sad truth is that most vegetable and fruit varieties you get at the supermarket were NOT bred for taste and texture. They were bred for traits that make them easy to ship long distances without damage and have a long shelf life when they hit the supermarket aisle. Tomatoes and some other vegetables and fruits are picked green and then gassed in order to make the skin color change so that they appear ripe. The reason most people don’t like vegetables and fruits is because they really don’t taste good.

    If you can grow your own, you have the opportunity to choose varieties that taste good because you don’t have to worry about transporting them. That’s why a homegrown tomato generally tastes fantastic and a supermarket one tastes like cardboard. If you can’t grow your own or don’t want to, the next best alternative is to buy produce from a farmers market. But ask the vendor if he grew the produce because sometimes they buy the same stuff you can get at the supermarket and re-sell it.

    CW: Good points. Thankfully, there are more Farmer’s Markets than ever these days. Fresh, local produce is always best.

  33. Hey Chad, as I can’t see carbs being more than 50 grams a day during these seven days will ithis diet get our body into ketosis? Is this one of the reasons for the rapid fat loss? Just curious because I heard it could be beneficial to start a longer term diet by getting your body into ketosis to begin with.

    CW: Don’t worry whether or not you’ll be in ketosis. Just stick to the plan as prescribed and you’ll get great results.

  34. Can you saute the vegetables? How do you post before and after pictures here? I’m starting this 7-day plan today.

    CW: Yes, you can saute them, but raw is always better. Take the pics then send them to me at my contact email on this site and I’ll decide which ones I’ll put up.

  35. Hi Chad,

    Great article as always.

    Quick question – can I expect to feel a little bit more tired/sluggish while doing this since the amount of calories I’ll be eating will be less than normal? Thanks!!

    CW: The first day you might feel a little lethargic (maybe not, though) but you’ll be amazed how much more energetic you’ll feel as the week progresses.

  36. hi chad
    if i want to chose eggs to be mi only source of protein for that plan, that mean 6/8 eggs at days 2-4 and 12/16 eggs at days 5-7, so what about yolks? whole eggs or just whites? i mean what is the maximum quantity of eggs or whole eggs in the day?
    and i want to know if lettuce is in the list of vegetables to choose from?
    thanks, you are the best trainer.

    CW: Use the whole egg. Eat three at each meal.

  37. Hi,
    I do not eat meat, but eggs are ok. Would it be alright to eat that many (around 12-16)? Can I add any dairy protein?

    CW: No dairy. Yes, three eggs at each meal is fine.

  38. I’m looking forward to trying this!

    On a side note, I had a fighter that needed to drop some weight a few weeks prior to a fight. As an experiment, I doubled his total vegetable intake while keeping his protein intake high. He was weighed and measured (measuring tape and calipers) before and after. After 7 days, all caliper readings were the same (some slightly less) but he was close to 5lbs heavier!

    Any ideas on how boosting veggie intake could so significantly increase hypertrophy for some?

    CW: Most of that weight was from water and glycogen in his muscles. Impressive results, though.

  39. hi chad,
    three eggs at each meal, and the whole egg, thats 12-16 so what about cholesterol or blood pressure? the yolk is almost made of cholesterol, i mean is that safe?

    CW: Almost everything scientists thought about eggs, in terms of the negative impact on cholesterol, etc has been shown to be false. But if you don’t want eggs, there are plenty of other choices.

  40. Just a note; day 3 on this diet and I really couldn’t believe the energy I had on Tuesday night. It’s my first workout night of the week and I usually can’t seem to give it my all, I just do my best and make up for it the rest of the week. But this was exceptional, felt like a Saturday morning workout with extra energy to spare. Maybe it won’t last throughout the week, but it really surprised me.

    CW: Excellent! Yep, that’s what happens when you reduce inflammation in your body.

  41. Hi Chad,

    Can you snack on veggies during the day as well, or just the 4 times and get full?


    CW: You can snack on any raw veggies such as broccoli, cauliflower or celery.

  42. Hi Chad,

    Thanks for the challenge! I’ve actually been on this since you posted it, i.e. this is my last day and I’m weighing in tomorrow and will post the results!


    A) How to go from here. Is it wise to continue past the 7 days? My performance is suffering from this, especially on heavy exercises with more than 4RM (which is all I’ve done on this diet). Also, the Challenge is on day #83, and today it was really, really tough.
    Should I now look to get a diet with some more food so I’ll be able to perform some well-fuelled, good and intense trainings so I’ll be able to return to my previous lifts? And if I’m looking to gain, should I gradually add carbs and proteins to the diet – or jump straight up to my standard figures (which are pretty close to your HIAH basic outline)?

    B) Where would you place this type of diet in a fat loss diet cycle, at its beginning (when typically coming off some kind of a bulk) or at the end (to cut down further from where you’ve been)? I do like doing 3 weeks bulk, then 2-3 weeks fat loss, and repeat (10-10 program style). And this time I’ve placed it at the end of the fat loss cycle (Body of FIRE diet).

    I thought this would be a week of starvation, but except for days 3 and 4, it’s been good! Best of all, it’s killed pretty much all my cravings for unhealthy stuff. And it’s been my first week in probably 10 years where I’ve not used supplements… and that has made me recognize how dependent I’ve mentally become to them. Salmon+veggies=yum!

    Thanks Chad,

    A) Yes, you can revert back to normal foods but keep as many veggies in as possible.
    B) This type of diet works best, typically, at the end.

    Good work!

  43. Chad,

    Is juicing like you talked about in another article an option for a meal or two during this diet? Would you recommended the chia seeds and sea salt as well?


    CW: It’s better to eat real foods in this plan to control your hunger. You can add Mila or a pinch of sea salt each day since it can help.

  44. Chad,
    Do you still drink Acai-100 Juice, and greens + powder as part of your regular diet? Or have you moved on to other things?

    CW: Yep, I still use them.

  45. chad is bread forbiden during the 7 day plan???

    CW: Of course. Bread is the last thing you need.

  46. Hi Chad
    If i would arrange this 7 day plan with your 10/10 system could I use the first as foreword of # 1 phase fat loss phase of the later ?
    Always thanks

    CW: Yes.

  47. Hi Chad,

    My wife and I are both doing this together and she was wondering what does she do about the headaches? It;s day one and she is experiencing them. Thank you in advance for your help.

    CW: That’s common when you drop carbs out of your diet. They should go away after a day or so, but I’m not a doctor. Try a glass of room temp water with a pinch of sea salt.

  48. Can I add any mayo to tuna or are all condiments off as well?

    CW: A touch of mayo is ok.

  49. Just finished the 7 day plan.
    Lost 3,2 kg (7 lb) and 2 cm (0.8 “) around my waist.
    Coffee and carb cravings were awful the first 3 days, had a headache for 3 days too, but i’ll do it all over again.
    The “detox” and result is worth it. Also – mentally – knowing it’s only for a week makes it easier.


    CW: Excellent. Kudos for toughing it out!

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