I think about “meal prepping” more like “mapping out a week of eating.” When I was physically going to work every day and trying to take advantage of 14 minute teacher lunch breaks (if you know, you know), I was much more detail oriented about prepping.
Truth be told, I enjoy mapping out a week of eating a lot better! It only takes me a few minutes of thought and a couple hours of cooking/preparation to be pretty much set for a balanced, nutritious week. And the best part? No getting bored from eating the same thing every day!
A few DOS/DON’TS to get started:
DO think about what you already have in the house. Browsing the internet for new recipes is SO overwhelming. Instead, let the food drive the meal. (This cuts back on grocery shopping, too. You’d be surprised what’s hiding in the back of those cupboards!)
DO pay attention to what research says we should be eating daily for optimal nutrition, energy, and disease prevention. For example, I know I should be eating green leafy vegetables regularly, even though they’re not my fav… So I plan them into my days in really purposeful ways. (I’ll admit to frequently hiding them in my spaghetti sauce or smoothies!)
DO focus on whole foods. They’re cheaper, easier to cook, more filling, and more nutritious. Herbs, spices, sauces, and condiments can be your best friends when it comes to “spicing up” a simple diet based in whole grains, beans, and vegetables.
DON’T try to cook a completely different dinner every night. Unless you absolutely love to cook and spend a lot of time at home, this probably isn’t feasible, and it isn’t necessary. Instead, when you have a few minutes, cook a big patch of pasta for two different dishes. Make a pot of rice to use for Mexican one night and Asian stir-fry another.
DON’T wait until you’re hungry to try to eat a vegetable. Most people, when they’re suddenly super hungry, don’t want to cut carrots or peel cucumbers! Having these things cut and ready in the refrigerator helps, but so does eating them as a late morning snack, chopped up in a lunch, or cooked into your favorite sauce. I like to prep my produce as soon as I bring it home from the grocery store.
Below is a video from my IGTV (Instagram TV, if you’re new) that walks through how I map out a week of eating and the types of things I include. Hope you find it helpful! Leave me a comment so I know you watched, and totally chime in as if you’re watching live – I’d love to answer your questions!
During 1:1 coaching, I help my clients map out their own week of eating, since everyone’s life, days, and preference are different. Once you developing a meal mapping system that works for you, it becomes second nature and a lot less stress!
To learn more about working with me as a coach, book a free 30 minute discovery call. We can talk about what you need and if what I do might be a good fit.
Thanks for reading – hope something sparked your interest! If it did, leave me a comment or message me on Instagram. Always love your feedback.