What is your biggest obstacle in staying true to following your meal prep/plan and a healthy eating lifestyle?
It’s not the slew of weddings you had to attend every weekend this summer and fall. And it’s not the happy hours that you felt you needed to have “just one” beer at. It’s not even the temptation of the pizza place down the street, which is only a phone call and a 7 minute wait away (this is NOT from past experience, mind you).
All these are secondary issues. The real issue starts with your Sunday. Yes, you heard me right. If you don’t set apart time to create a system of healthy meals that are readily available to you, you will submit to your cravings one late night because your willpower will eventually succumb to your cravings. Remember: “If you fail to plan, you’re planning to fail.” Here’s what you need to do:
1. Have a meal plan set for you for the week.
Whether you create it yourself via My Fitness Pal or you use Okon Fitness as a resource, this is a great way to fly towards your health goals.
2. Set apart a 2 hour block for shopping for everything on your list
Make sure you only purchase what you will be using to prepare your meals.
3. Set apart a 2–3 hour period to prep your meals
Remember that as you do it more and more, it won’t take you this long as you will learn how to “hack” your meal prep time, but as you are starting out you need to make sure you set apart time to prep your meals. Wondering how you can “hack” your meal prep time? Here are some things that I do (other than using Power Plate Meals):
4. Buy a good amount of tupperware or BPA free meal prep containers
This is a great way to not only prepare your week, but be ready to go and once you have your plethora of food done, you can separate all your food and weigh it in one fell swoop. I will add links at the end of this article, but here is a great tool to weight your food — it weights in grams as well as ounces up to 5 lbs. and here is a great brand of meal prep containers that are really affordable and easy to wash as well as BPA free.
5. Use your 2–3 hours wisely
Now that you’re prepared to meal prep, measure out your portions of your carbs, your protein, and take the time to prepare your vegetables as well. Take the time to put any additional snacks on your meal plan in baggies such as almonds, veggies, and any additional snacks. I usually focus on prepping meals 2–6 on my meal plan because I can make my breakfast and my final meal at home.
6. Use a container that can keep your food cool
I love love love my FitMark Bags, I use them to tote around my meals when I’m on the go so I can enjoy my food and it doesn’t sit in my warm car for too long. Concerning long-term survival of your meal prepping survival, this could be a vital element if you want to actually enjoy your meticulously prepped meals.
7. Preventative for food “going bad”
Concerned about keeping the food “fresh” when prepping for an entire week? Once all meals are measured out in their container, freeze them. This ensures that by the end of the week the food is still good. Just remember to take it out of the freezer the night before!
8. Bring eating utensils — and any condiments
One thing I tend to forget while on the go is eating utensils! To avoid having to use your hands to shovel your food in your mouth (which is tots normal if you do) always keep plastic forks/spoons in your Fitmark bag (or whatever lunch bag you use). On top of that I keep salt-pepper packets in my bag just in case!
9. Don’t forget your food
This seems to be self explanatory!
10. Still can’t find the time..
Find an awesome meal prepping company!
I am beyond blessed to have found Power Plate Meals (based out of Fargo, North Dakota). Keeps me on track with my diet and prepares me to conquer my week. Many of us live busy lives and simply do not have the time to meal prep. If this is the case, I suggest doing research into companies that take all the work out of meal prepping each week. It’s simple, you go online, find the company you want to work with, order off of your meal plan, and they send it to you in the mail! All you have to do is unpack the food. Simple right?
11. Enjoy the fit life
You went to all this work to make sure you have prepped meals, I’m sure you will find yourself happy you were able to eat your healthy meal before your company happy hour which you opted for water or a diet coke instead of that beer or those nachos..or that medium (large) pizza, or all those gooey chocolaty melt in your mouth doughnuts that are half your caloric intake for the day….
There you go! Meal Prep 101. This should give you a head start toward following your meal plan and sticking to it throughout the week! No excuses!
Thank you so much for reading.
For fitness motivation, click here to follow my Instagram and watch as I work my way to the Olympian stage in 2017.
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