"Food is Fuel": I Follow Erin Oprea's Balanced Diet for 3 Days

Erin Oprea, Carrie Underwood's personal trainer, is my #fitsporation.  She is incredibly busy as a mom and a celebrity trainer, and she still has time to live a balanced lifestyle and eat a balanced diet.  Plus did I mention she has an 8 pack? 

What I love most about her is that she gives her followers the tools for having a balanced diet and lifestyle.  She posts workouts, recipes, and motivational quotes to help everyone achieve their goals.  She also posts a weekly free meal plan on the Menud app, an app that has weekly meal plans from celebrities and brands.  

One of her favorite sayings is that food is fuel, and you will perform at your best when you fuel yourself with whole foods.  Of course, that doesn't mean you still can't have the occasional doughnut (her favorite food)!  Erin advocates for everyone to indulge in moderation, not cut out all unhealthy foods.   

With the stress of school, I struggle with eating healthy consistently.  Some days I'll eat vegetables, and other days I'll eat half of the Trader Joe's dark chocolate peanut butter cup package.  So, I decided to eat Erin's recipes for 3 days and see if Erin's balanced diet helps improve my energy and hunger throughout each day.   

The Prep

On Sunday, I planned all my meals and got ingredients from Trader Joe's.  Then, I meal prepped by cooking my chicken for the week on Sunday night.  

Day 1

I started my day with a morning workout, and then afterwards cooked myself Erin's signature oatmeal with maple syrup, egg whites, and blueberries.  I was really hesitant to try this, but it actually was really good!  The egg whites were basically flavorless in the oatmeal but provided me extra protein to keep me full until lunch.   

For lunch I had planned making her curry chicken salad (pictured above), but Trader Joe's was out of curry powder.  So, I improvised and had Trader Joe's wine country chicken salad for lunch.  It was the perfect small lunch that fueled me through the rest of my classes.     

Dinner was the highlight of my day.  I made Erin's cauliflower fried rice, and it was amazing and took less than 20 minutes to make. 

I cooked Trader Joe's frozen riced cauliflower stir fry in a pan and cooked broccoli by microwaving it in the bag.  I added the broccoli, chicken, and 2 tbsp of coconut aminos to the "rice".  Top it all off with sriracha, and you can hardly tell that you're eating a bowl of veggies.   

After day 1, I was feeling great.  My energy levels were high throughout the day, and I didn't have my usual hunger pangs in my afternoon classes.   

Day 2

Day 2's breakfast was oatmeal and egg whites again, but this time I added fruit sweetened raspberry jam and frozen raspberries.  This took the oatmeal to the next level.  The frozen raspberries melted into the warm oats and added bursts of flavor.   

#SpoonTip: You can cook egg whites in a microwave to recreate this breakfast in a dorm room!  

I had class from 12-5, so for lunch I made a Hummus and Veggie Sandwich off of Erin's plate list on Menud.  I put hummus, avocado, shredded carrots and spinach on whole wheat toasted bread, then packed it up to eat between classes. 

I honestly didn't have that high of expectations for this sandwich because I am not always a huge hummus fan.  But, this sandwich was so good.  I usually only eat a bar during my 12-5 classes, and it never fills me up.  This sandwich was super filling, and I felt more alert during the rest of my classes.  I even was able to stay awake in my 3:30 pm lecture.   

Dinner for day 2 was pad thai zoodles with chicken from Erin's plate list on Menud.  I added the peanut pad thai sauce, zoodles, and chicken into a hot pan and cooked until the zoodles were warm.  It only took 20 minutes to make, but the tricky part is cooking the zoodles. If you leave them in the pan for too long, the sauce becomes watery.  I speak from personal experience.  

The highlight of day 2 was definitely the veggie sandwich.  It was draining to prepare every meal today, but my energy in class was higher and I was feeling proud of myself for fueling my body.

Day 3

This morning I was not feeling like eggs in my oatmeal, so I skipped the egg whites. Sorry Erin! I had oatmeal with maple syrup, blueberries and cinnamon for breakfast. It was simple, but helped me feel energized for the day.  

For lunch, I had chicken salad again.  It was just what I needed because I only had 30 minutes to run from class to office hours!

Today's dinner was Erin's BBQ chicken cauliflower pizza.  This was the easiest and also the longest dinner to make.  It took around 40 minutes, but all I did was precook the crust, then spread low sugar BBQ sauce on top of it and sprinkle mozzarella and red onions on top.  Then I broiled the pizza until the cheese was browned.  

The pizza was delicious, but I could've used more cheese.  Erin is healthy and only puts "a tiny bit of mozzarella" on her pizza.  I am a huge cheese girl, so this was a little disappointing. Does it even count as pizza if it doesn't have cheese?


It was fun and surprisingly easy to eat Erin's recipes.  All her recipes take at the most 20 minutes to make, and I had high energy levels for all 3 days.  It was also so nice to sit in class for 5 hours and not feel hungry.  Now I just need a doughnut to truly follow Erin's balanced diet.

Give some of Erin's recipes a try for yourself or find more delicious ones on her Instagram @erinoprea!