Happy Tuesday! I hope you all had a great three day weekend!
I love having three days weekends either to go out of town – or sometimes to just have a normal weekend, and use the extra day for things like cleaning, meal prep, laundry ect.
I try to plan out my meals for the week for a few reasons.
- It saves money – if I have food in the house and make big batches of things ahead of time, it is less expensive than buying ingredients meal by meal
- It saves time – see above. Stopping by the grocery store on your way home from work tacks an extra 30-45 minutes onto the meal making process – and this is without even accounting for your exhaustion level after a full day of work.
- It leaves less openings to say “too tired, I can’t even, I’m ordering an entire pizza.” If I have good food in the fridge, ready to be cooked up, or even heated up, it helps cut down on the unhealthy eating opportunities.
The way I plan out my week:
- Take a look at the calendar – work lunches? Dinners with friends? What meals do I need to account for? Figure that out first – 4 lunches and 3 dinners, for example.
- Put together a shopping list. Once you know what you are making, you can do a better job shopping for just what you NEED. Aka – avoid coming home with 14 boxes of Mac N Cheese, 3 frozen burritos, and a box of strawberries.
- This is optional – I eat a lot of the same things. To me, it is easier and I tend to not get sick of food. If you do, you could switch it up weekly.
You’ve seen this same picture a lot because I eat this EVERY morning!
I usually have some “anchor meals.” I do track my food in MyFitnessPal (MFP). So these are the meals I will enter in pretty much every day. I have the same breakfast and usually will have a big protein & veggie meal either for lunch or dinner.
Eating the same anchor meals also makes tracking in MFP a little easier. You can just copy over those meals from day to day. Then swap it up when you get bored of that meal.
The other thing you want to take into account is your workouts – what and when. Ideally, you want to have most of your carbs for the day around your workout. If you aren’t training fasted, you’ll want carbs before for energy, and after you will want the carbs for recovery.
Because carbs are love.
My favorite meal prep items are:
- Grilled chicken breast
- Lean ground turkey
- Roasted broccoli with olive oil and spices
- Green beans
I can make A LOT of combos with those things.
Sometimes, life is going to happen and your well laid plans are going to go to complete c**p. Being Type A Neurotic, this is not my strong suit. However, as I get older, it is easier to roll with the punches. Keep some good staples in your house that you can have in a pinch: canned tuna in water, low carb tortillas, protein powder, greek yogurt, bags of frozen vegetables, frozen turkey burger patties, instant rice, canned beans, jerky, protein bars, string cheese, ect ect. Be a girl scout. Be prepared for the unexpected. Is that even a girl scout thing? I actually have no idea. Organized group activities & team sports – not my gig.
This is the end of the week “I have got to clean the fridge out of left overs STAT” meal.
The moral of the story is – if you can take a little time at the beginning of the week to look at your schedule and think about what you are going to shop for and cook, your life during the busy work week will be that much easier.
What is your go to meal prep routine?