For the last 10 weeks I have been meal planning, and to say its one of the biggest reasons I've been successful in my weight loss journey is an understatement. Every Friday night or Saturday morning, I sit down and plan out the next 7 days worth of meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and 2 snacks. I make my grocery list, head to the store to pick up all the yummy foods for the week ahead, and then head home to prepare our food for the next day and off we go.
This has been working great, until the holidays hit. I got to the point, that I felt every night I was spending 2-3 hours in the kitchen making dinner, cleaning up from dinner, and then preparing lunches for the next day. By the time we had dinner and I prepped for the next day, it was time to go to bed. LOL!
So this past weekend, I decided to do something different. I decided to meal prep ALL my food for Monday - Friday. This meant spending 2 hours in the kitchen cooking ALL my food at once, and can I say that my life has been changed. I felt that a weight had been lifted off my shoulders when I got up on Monday morning and everything was done!
Pic of all my meals for the week!
Now all I have to do is get up in the morning, and all my food is ready to go. It makes staying on this clean eating lifestyle plan sooooo much easier.
So what is my advice at Meal Planning. Here are 4 easy steps:
1) Get good containers.
I am still in the process of getting 2 and 3 divider containers, but I do love my MealPrep containers. These cost a little more than Ziploc containers, but are sooo worth it. Amazon has a great selection, and Santa put these fun containers in my stocking this Christmas.
2) Make a good menu and keep it simple.
Don't try to go too crazy and be too fancy. Just keep it simple and maybe repeat breakfast and lunch on Mondays/Wednesdays AND on Tuesdays/Thursdays to keep the menu simple. Also, check out sites like Pinterest or event Instagram (searching hashtag #mealprep) to find ideas on what to fix.
3) Buy only whats on your list.
When you go to the grocery store, only buy the food on your list. Stay away from junk food that you know will trip you up. And, if your like me, whose husband likes to have a snack or two around the house, just buy cookies and chips that you do not like. That way you will not be tempted to eat it.
4) Make a list
Make a list of ALL the fun things you can do now that you are not in the kitchen every night worried about planning and fixing your meals for the next day. Once dinner is over, you can go and relax, because tomorrow is already planned.
And, here was my food on Monday. I am participating in a 21 Day Healthy Eating Challenge so I took a pic of all the food I ate that day. All this delicious, super healthy food is less than 1,500 calories and had me full all day.
How about you? Do you meal plan or meal prep?
Be Blessed My Friends!