Weekly Meal Plan for Soccer Players

Looking for a weekly meal plan for soccer players? You are in the right spot. In this blog, we start with the basics so you can build a solid fueling foundation for your best performance. 

Understanding what your body needs for the most optimal performance can be overwhelming.

 As a retired college soccer player turned sports dietitian, I know how intimidating it can be. Here are some tips and tricks that you can apply to your weekly meal plan to meet your goals.

Nutrition 101

Sports nutrition can be simple. As athletes, you are putting your body in many physically demanding situations. Whether it’s from your two-a-day practices, scrimmages, tournaments, or games, your body needs support from what you eat! What you do off the field can directly affect your performance on the field. 

Proper fueling can help you reach your full potential and peak performance. The only way to reach this maximum potential is to fuel your body!

So what does that look like? By creating a fueling plan, you will hit every goal on and off the field!

Performance Plate Method

I have designed a simple fueling method that athletes can apply to every meal called the Performance Plate Method. At Reilly Beatty Sports Nutrition, athletes use different “Performance Plates” based on their fueling focus and training load for that day. 

Performance Plates contain a different ratio of carbohydrates, protein, and fat depending on their fueling focus. I will walk you through each of these ratios. There are three categories of the Performance Plate Method. 

By dividing these into Practice Day, Rest Day, and Game Day, you can personalize your plate to what you need based on your daily training load.

Practice Day Performance Plate 

  • ⅓ Protein 
  • ⅓ Carbs (Grains and Starches)
  • ⅓ Color (Fruit and Vegetables)
  • 2-3 Servings of fat 

Rest Day Plate 

  • ¼ Protein 
  • ¼ Carbs (Grains and Starches)
  • ½ Color (Fruit and Vegetables) 
  • 2-3 Servings of fat 

Game Day Performance Plate

  • ¼ Protein 
  • ½ Carbs (Grains and Starches)
  • ¼ Color (Fruit and Vegetables) 
  • 1-2 Servings of fat

Meeting your goals can be accomplished by modifying these plates based on your training and goals for the day! I help athletes create individualized Performance Plate plans in the Performance Fueling Club.

If you want to learn more about the Performance Plate Method and how this can be made just for you, apply for my nutrition coaching program! I have used this method with all PFC athletes to help them increase their energy levels, optimize their nutrition and maximize their performance potential. By joining the Performance Fueling Club, you receive Sports Dietitian support to reach your goals so you can feel confident heading onto the field. 

Foods First, Supplements Second

One of the biggest sports nutrition mistakes I see athletes make is immediately reaching for supplements when trying to increase their performance. If you do not have a good fueling foundation, supplements will not be as effective in meeting your goals. 

Athletes often see supplements as they do medication. You take ibuprofen, you get a result. Supplements are NOT the same. Just because you take protein powder doesn’t mean you will see an increase in muscle mass. 

Don’t get me wrong, supplements can elevate your fueling plan, and many athletes I work with use performance supplements. But what you are doing with your whole fueling plan is what is much more important.

Instead of starting with supplements, I recommend trying the Performance Plate Method first!


Hydration promotes optimal performance during training and games. Water is essential to support our bodies in all of their functions. For athletes, this is especially important. Staying hydrated helps with many aspects of training. 

Whether you are practicing or at a game, soccer players lose a lot of water through sweat. Sweating is your body’s way of cooling down your body temperature. It is important to replenish this water loss and keep your core body temperature down so that you do not overwork your body and leave yourself feeling exhausted.

Water in your body can also impact your blood circulation. Proper circulation and blood amount are essential for oxygen and nutrient delivery to the working muscles.

With adequate hydration, you will have the correct consistency and circulation of blood!

Lastly, water can influence your focus. Dehydration may hinder your concentration and slow down your decision-making. Making clear and fast decisions for your team is essential during a game. Staying hydrated equals staying focused!

What to Eat Throughout the Week

In the Performance Fueling Club, athletes learn how to build easy and simple meals throughout the week. With the help of this method, you can plan your meals around your fueling focus for that day while also eating the foods you love! 

So what would a day on a weekly meal plan for soccer players look like? Since practice is often the most common focus for most athletes, I want to walk through a mock Practice Day plan for a soccer player with morning training below. 


When to Have: 2-3 hours before training

Many athletes skip breakfast because of crazy schedules, fear of GI distress, or misinformation. Skipping fueling before practice will put your muscles at a disadvantage because they will not have enough energy for your best performance. Not only will you have increased energy and mental clarity with a good breakfast but fueling up before will prevent you from getting hungry during training.

Breakfast Meal Ideas

Some of my favorite breakfast ideas include:

  • Overnight Oats
  • Smoothie
  • Peanut Butter and Jelly with a Banana
  • Honey Nut Cheerios, 1% milk, banana, and strawberries
PFC Athlete cereal bowl


When to Have: 1-2 hours after training

Lunch is essential to power you through your afternoon and help you refuel after practice. Refueling your body at lunch will provide the energy for proper recovery and keep your body and brain working efficiently through the afternoon. Lunch can be both nutritious and delicious choices that give you the fuel for peak performance for the rest of the day!

If you have more than 1 hour before post-practice refueling, check out these post-workout fuel options to have immediately after practice.

Lunch Meal Ideas

  • Tuna salad sandwich on whole wheat bread with mixed berries and pretzels 
  • Turkey wrap in a whole wheat wrap with cheese, mustard or mayo with Greek yogurt and an apple 
  • Grain bowl with quinoa, carrots, cucumber, tomato, chickpeas, your choice of meat protein


When to Have: 4-5 hours after lunch

Dinner is the perfect time to focus on recovery and pre-preparation for the next day. Dinner is important because it sets you up for how you feel tomorrow and can top off your glycogen stores to maximize performance at the next day’s training! When you replenish your body after all of its hard work, you promote overnight recovery and higher energy levels the next day.

Dinner Meal Ideas

  • Grilled chicken, grilled vegetables, baked potatoes, or bread
  • Spaghetti/bolognese sauce with salad and bread
  • Burrito bowl with protein, cheese, rice, corn, tomatoes, and guac 


It can be intimidating to get started (and might seem like a lot) but it is actually very simple! I recommend starting out with the Performance Plate Method and aiming to make your plates look like a Practice Day with 1/3 carbohydrates, 1/3 protein, and 1/3 color.

You can easily make some of these meal examples into the Practice Day plates. Once you have started here, reach out for more individualized help. I support athletes in the Performance Fueling Club to meet their goals with easy and simple nutrition. You will receive professional-level nutrition that applies to athletes of all levels. Apply today to get started.



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