You’ll build your initial diet by first determining your protein and fat intake; carbs and total calories will fall into place from there.

For protein intake, I highly recommend reaching 1.5 grams per pound daily, as this level specifically has been shown in multiple scientific studies recently to not only maximize muscle building, but also to aide in fat loss. I realize, however, that 1.5 grams may be a considerable jump from your current protein intake, so at the very least hit 1 gram and gradually work your way up to 1.5. In Dieting 101, I’ll be using 1.5 grams (unless otherwise noted) in the sample meal plans.

Since there are four calories per gram of protein, that means you’ll consume six calories from protein per pound of body weight daily. Fat has about nine calories per gram, so you’ll be consuming 4.5 calories from fat per pound.

Calories from protein plus calories from fat equals 10.5 calories per pound of body weight. Subtract 10.5 from the number of calories per pound of body weight you currently eat based on your food record. For the sample 200-pound person consuming 20 calories per pound of body weight (the example I used in Step #1), that equals 9.5 calories.

This is the amount of calories you can consume from carbs per pound of body weight. Since there are four calories per gram of carbs, that equals about 2.5 grams of carbs per pound. Round that number down to 2 grams.

Your new diet will consist of about 1.5 grams of protein, 2 grams of carbs, 0.5 gram of fat and 18.5 calories per pound of body weight per day.

For the 200-pound person that equates to 3,700 calories, 300 grams of protein, 400 grams of carbs, and 100 grams of fat per day. (See the sample diet for a 200-pound person following these guidelines.)

Follow your newly created diet for as long as you continue seeing fat-loss results. Many of you will gain muscle mass even as you’re dropping fat, so don’t use the scale as your major indicator of fat loss. Use the mirror, progress photos, your waist size, or how you fit into your pants. An even better option is to have your body fat measured by a professional using either a site skinfold caliper, underwater weighing, or DEXA scan.

My Dieting 101 plan will work great during this 28-day program, but even better than that, you can use it indefinitely thereafter. Dieting 101 is not some quick-fix diet. I designed it as an educational tool and as a nutritional foundation for anyone looking to get lean and stay lean.

Dieting 101 Key: Sample Meals

Please note that the sample meal plans throughout Dieting 101 serve to illustrate how to change your diet as you move through the different steps. This doesn’t mean you should eat the same foods every day and in each step of the diet. You should have as much variety in your diet as possible.


>>The Dieting 101 sample meals you’ll see throughout are for workout days. On off days from the gym, skip the post-workout meal and have the pre-workout meal as a snack.

>>For peak training performance, I highly recommend taking 3.2-6.4 grams of CarnoSyn® beta-alanine every day, including on rest days. Research shows that athletes should take beta-alanine for 28 days until they reach a minimum threshold of 90 grams. That’s an average of 3.2 grams per day, minimum.

Hear why Dr. Stoppani only uses CarnoSyn® beta-alanine:

>>When you eat your pre-workout and post-workout meals will obviously depend on what time of the day you train – first thing in the morning; at lunchtime; in the evening after work and before dinner; or at night after dinner. In the meal plans below, pre-workout and post-workout meals are listed last to stand apart from other meals.

>>Regardless of when you train, have your pre-workout meal 30-45 minutes before training and your post-workout meal within 30 minutes or so after training. Generally speaking, your other meals can fit around this simply by having your next regularly scheduled meal 30-60 minutes after your post-workout meal. For example, if you train first thing in the morning, have your breakfast 30-60 after your post-workout meal.

>>One aspect that will vary depending on when you train is your Shred JYM intake. I recommend taking Shred JYM several hours before and/or after Pre JYM, as both contain significant doses of caffeine that in most people should be spread out. My sample meal plans show Shred JYM taken between breakfast and late-morning snack as well as between lunch and afternoon snack. You may need to change this depending on when you train.



  • 1 scoop Pro JYM protein powder
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tsp olive oil (scramble eggs in olive oil)
  • 2 cups cooked oatmeal (1 cup dry oats before cooking)
  • 1 tbsp honey (mix honey in oatmeal)
  • 4 capsules Omega JYM fish oil

Fat-burning supplements (take between breakfast and late-morning snack)

Late-morning snack

  • 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1 cup sliced pineapple
  • 5 Triscuit whole-wheat crackers
  • (mix pineapple in cottage cheese and eat with crackers)


  • 6 oz. can albacore tuna
  • 2 slices whole-wheat (or Ezekiel) bread
  • 1 tbsp light mayonnaise
  • 1 large piece of fruit (apple, orange, banana, etc.)
  • 1 dose Vita JYM multivitamin

Fat-burning supplements (take between lunch and afternoon snack)

Afternoon snack

  • 1 scoop Pro JYM protein powder
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp jam
  • 2 slices whole-wheat (or Ezekiel) bread


  • 8 oz. steak (or salmon or other fish, or chicken or other poultry, or pork)
  • 1 cup of cooked brown rice
  • 1 cup of cooked black beans or pinto beans
  • 2 cups mixed green salad
  • 2 tbsp salad dressing (olive oil and vinegar)

Before Bed Supplements (taken at least 1 hour after dinner and at least 1 hour prior to before-bed snack)

  • 1 dose ZMA JYM (females take 2/3 dose)

Before-Bed Snack

  • 1 scoop Pro JYM protein powder or 1 cup cottage cheese or 1 cup Greek yogurt (with 1 teaspoon honey)
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter (can add to shake or Greek yogurt or eat separate)

Pre-workout (30-45 minutes before workouts)

  • 2 grams CarnoSyn® beta-alanine (the amount included in one serving/scoop of Pre JYM by JYM Supplement Science, along with other active ingredients)
  • 1 scoop Pro JYM protein powder
  • 1 large apple

Post-workout (within 30 minutes after workouts)

  • 2 grams CarnoSyn® beta-alanine (the amount included in one serving/scoop of Post JYM by JYM Supplement Science, along with other active ingredients)
  • 1-2 scoops Pro JYM protein powder


On days you don’t train, continue taking 2-4 grams of CarnoSyn® beta-alanine, taking one scoop of Pre JYM and/or one scoop of Post JYM at whatever time of day you like. (Pre JYM and Post JYM each contain 2 grams of CarnoSyn® beta-alanine.)

Go to Step #3 of Jim Stoppani’s Dieting 101 >>

Return to the 28 Days to Redemption program>>