The number one key to sticking to your meal plan is definitely preparation.
If you fail to plan you plan to fail – you’ve probably heared this quote thrown around several times before but it really is as simple as that!
We plan our training sessions because waiting until ‘an opening pops up’ simply doesn’t work, why would we tackle our nutrition any different?
When you’re coming home at the end of a long work day you’ll not feel like making a big effort slaving away in the kitchen, you want a meal that fits into your healthy diet and you want it fast. Am I right?
This is where meal prep comes in. Preparing the bulk of your meals in advance will save you a lot of time and maybe even a few pounds!
No need to grab a quick sandwich when you come prepared with your healthy lunch from home and no excuse for that microwave meal when you have an abundance of healthy alternatives stocked in your fridge.
There are several ways to start incorporating meal prep into your life – one I find most convenient is taking 2 moments per week to prepare most of your meals.
This may sounds fancy and complicated but I assure you that it’s not – it’s going to be a new habit that will make your healthy lifestyle a lot easier!
Let’s start with our protein.
A few healthy options include chicken breast, ground turkey, salmon, hardboiled eggs and tuna. Now instead of preparing this as needed for just the next meal you will make enough to last you for a few days, simply prepare as usual and store in your trusty Tupperware.
The same method applies to your carbohydrates. Rice, (sweet) potatoes, oatmeal, quinoa, squash – choose your favourite, calculate how many portions you need for the week and cook or bake to perfection!
When it comes down to vegetables it’s a personal choice of taste preference vs convenience. Personally I tend to not prep my vegetables for dinner – they only take a few minutes to stir fry.
Seeing as I have my carb and protein of choice already prepared in the fridge dinner is still ready within 10 minutes!
If you do choose to prepare them in advance: green beans, broccoli, asparagus, zucchini, brussel sprouts and eggplant are a few healthy options that store well in your fridge.
But what about snacks?
Hardboiled eggs, a handful of nuts with an apple, a greek yogurt with blueberries are just a few snacks that are healthy, easy and satisfying.
All the foods mentioned above are fine to have store in your fridge for 3 to 4 days.
This is why I recommend 2 moments to meal prep every week.
All of this is subject to your personal situation, you don’t want to over-prep and waste food.
Take it week by week.
Look at your schedule – if you know you’re having a few meals out adjust portions accordingly.
If you choose to do a bigger meal prep you can store your food in the freezer for up to 4 months.
Adding in variety is quite simple by changing up your spices and condiments. Add some salsa to your lunch for the first 2 days and switch to balsamic vinegar or soy sauce for the next few.
Personally I don’t mind eating the same lunch several days in a row: I enjoy cooking up a stew, a stir-fry or a noodle dish and I’ll enjoy that for 3-4 lunches in a row – I love the convenience of not having to think about it – just grab and go!