Helpful Tips For Successful Meal Planning

Cooked Mixed VegetableYesterday I was sitting in front of my computer and was going down memory lane while doing some goal planning.  I posted a before and after picture of myself on Facebook to put myself out there and inspire others struggling to take their first step.  Wow! I got more than I bargained for.  Incredible women all over the world reached out.  I was blown away by the fact that so many sisters decided to change their family tree and leave a legacy of healthy lifestyle.  I also received so many questions on what my plan was.  In response to those requests I want to share what a typical day looks like for me training and eating.

I get up and start my morning praying to get my mind right and prepare for the day.

I then pack my cooler for the day.  On Sundays I cook for the next 3 days to avoid the guesswork especially when you are hungry during the day and can’t wait to eat something. Then that’s when magically you find yourself ordering a 700-calorie salad at a fast food chain thinking that because it’s a salad, it must be healthy.  Nutrition is key and really 80% of your success and a flat tummy starts in the kitchen, not by doing 2000 crunches every day.

Meal Planning Steps

I love variety in my food and get super bored eating the same things. I look for at least 3 new recipes making sure the serving size is clearly indicated; something that takes at least 30 minutes to prepare.  I recently purchased this clean eating book and I’ve tried several of the recipes and like it.

The cookbook is available at Amazon.com.

I confess that almost all the recipes I add my own spices, a little Haitian zest in it.  As long as they are salt-free with no MSG, season away.  I also prepare a menu in advance for the 3 days.  For the next 3 days I eat the same meat and just change things a little.  For instance you chicken can be a sandwich on Monday, paired with  rice on Tuesday  and pasta Wednesday.

Preparing the menu goes like this:

Protein Starch/ grain/carbs/dairy Veggies/Fruits
Meal 1 3 egg white + 1 whole egg ½ cup oatmeal dry cooked with water and cinnamon 6 ounces of fresh or frozen strawberries
Meal 2 Lean Ground Beef Sweet potatoes or Brown Rice or Quinoa or Whole wheat couscous or polenta 1 cup spinach prepared with onions and garlic
Meal 3 Grilled salmon 1 cup of veggies with Shiratakee noodles
Snack 1 Chobani greek yogurgt with cinnamon, 1 stevia 1 apple
Snack 2 Celery sticks 1 tbsp almond butter (good fats)

Now repeat the same process for Day 2 and Day 3.

Frustration comes sometimes out of not doing what you know you are supposed to be doing to reach your goals.With the menu done, I prepare my grocery list and stop at least 4 stores depending on what I am buying:  whole foods, local health food store, trader Joe’s and stop & shop.  Don’t go shopping tired or hungry, that’s a recipe for failure.

Once I step into the house I grab the meat and fish for the next 3 days and season them on the spot with scallion, peppers, ground cumin, turmeric and salt-free Mrs. Dash.  I put them in separate containers and let them season over night.  The longer the seasoning seats in there the better.

With your meat and fish ready to go, after Church on Sunday you just transfer everything to a pot or in the oven and bake all of them at the same time.  On the side you steam your veggies, bake your sweet potatoes and cook your brown rice or quinoa.  A great investment that cooks your rice perfect 100% of the time is a rice cooker.  I use mine all the time and spend time with my son instead of stirring and watching stuff cook on the oven.

Rice cookers are very affordable (the cost of 2 Starbucks coffee ), and available at Amazon.com.

Meal Packing and Workout Schedule

Once everything is cooked you transfer them to containers and in the fridge.

Before you go to bed you line-up 5 or 6 empty containers and have you food scale ready and voila! your entire meals for the next day are ready.  You pack them in your cooler and put the cooler in the fridge.  Now if you have a big family you will probably cook more food. The idea is that it is already cooked and can be frozen. For my husband I fix all his meals on separate plates and stack them in the fridge.  When he gets off work all he has to do is put the plate in the microwave and he is good to go.  Involve your entire family in your journey this way someone doesn’t show up in the house with a pizza or sub. Make it a family affair.

The cooler that I have is available at Amazon.com

The food scale is also available at Amazon.com

Imagine how much time you have to yourself in the morning with your meal ready for you and the family.

Second, my workout goes something like this:

Monday: Legs, Low intensity Cardio, Abs

Tuesday: High Intensity Cardio

Wednesday: Back, Chest, Low intensity cardio

(cooking for next 3 days)

Thursday: Cardio (usually a workout DVD) and Abs

Friday: shoulders and arms, Cardio

Saturday: Plyometrics or 20-minutes workout routine at home

Sunday:  Thank you Jesus I worship, spend quality time with little man, rest and cook away.

Sometimes your days don’t go as planned but your food is already prepared, no worries about that.  If you don’t get to do your workout in the morning have a must-do commitment  with yourself like 30 minutes of something (jump rope… etc).  When I don’t feel like doing my cardio, I pick a television show that I like, I don’t have cable at home (on purpose to be more productive) I go to the gym and watch the show while I am on the treadmill sprinting or just walking. Something is better than nothing and you kill 2 birds with 1 stone: your cardio is done and you watched your favorite show doing something good for you,  instead of being on the couch or in bed doing mindless eating to wake up the next day feeling guilty.  Last thing is to have a way to track your progress and write what you put in your mouth.  Remember the title of this blog, when you see and acknowledge your progress, the walls your hit, your habits, it makes it easier to seek for help, it motivates you to keep going. Take pictures every 2 weeks and compare them because when you look at yourself everyday it’s hard to see the progress. Pictures don’t lie and they are a means to keep you motivated and accountable.

The workout journal that I use is also available at Amazon.com

You can have all the people in the world believing in you, encouraging you, if you don’t believe in yourself and encourage yourself first, change will not happen. Your body is your temple and the vessel that God blessed you with to express your divine gifts. Take care of it like it was a pot of gold, forgive yourself for all the times food was used as an emotional Band-Aid and start now.  Start now my friend.

See you at the top and spread the love…

 

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About SimplyWebly

My name is Webly, and I am a dreamer, wife, mom, geek in disguise, who discovered my passion for fitness, and reinvented myself after tipping the scale at 238 pounds. My goal is to help others live a healthy lifestyle, eat clean, and get fit without the complicated fluff. I am also a national Fitness competitor, published athlete, and fitness model. Follow me @simplywebly and let's kick the weight out for good this time.

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