Meal Prepping Tips & Tricks
DEC - ARTICLE BY COACH JOSH
It is this time of year when all of the hard work starts to pay off and how do we reward ourselves?
By indulging, because we deserve it right!? We have worked hard, trained consistently in our week to week life, so we deserve to have a break and enjoy ourselves over the festive season, am I right? BE WARNED this starts the vicious cycle for the new year of bad eating habits as we eat and drink our way through the social gatherings.
Look, it is human nature to want to de-stress, but binging is not going to help your mind nor will it help you get the body you are working towards, regardless if it’s ‘function’ or ‘aesthetics’ you are searching for. As we head into this time of year, one of the first things to go is meal prep. But if you can prepare most of your meals, it also means when you are going to relax a little and enjoy a burger and beer you will feel ok to do so because all of your eating has been awesome. Maybe you’re new to the meal prep game, that’s ok this article is for you to! So we’re do we begin with meal prepping tips and tricks:
Stick to the 90% Rule (at least):
Even in this silly season, try to stay to the 90% rule. That is, 90% of the week you’re meals are prepared for nourishment and performance, while the remaining 10% is for you to you treat yourself and join society. For those seeking more consistent and faster aesthetic changes you will need to crank it to the 95%-98% rule (best of luck).
Im not the Grinch! So how do I stay 90% on track?
First Step - Adjust your Attitude:
If you know you struggle with devoting yourself to routine and structure or you see all healthy food as rabbit food. Then you my friend need to first work on how you perceive food. Train your brain and eventually your physiology will follow. For example, if you tell yourself that eating healthy is make you feel good, oppose to being a hinderance, then you are more likely to start enjoying the taste and experience of your healthy meals.
Need some help? Here is a mindfulness dialogue you can work with:
Imagine a really awesome, healthy, delicious meal. What's in it?
This meal has stuff you and your body will enjoy. You can tell by looking at it: This meal is packed full of good stuff — vitamins, minerals, other nutrients. Maybe some of your green-light foods.
How does it feel to eat this meal? Imagine the flavours you enjoy in this meal.
Imagine sitting down, taking your time, and really savouring that meal. Where are you? What's happening?
After you eat that meal, you know you're going to feel great. Full of energy and vitality. Proud of yourself. Like you'll live forever. Now imagine feeling like that after you eat every meal.
Next Step - Prep for Success
If you can’t stand the sight of kale - then don’t make it the star in your meal. Try another leafy green that you do enjoy or chop up kale so finely and hide it in your food. The point is to some extent the meals needs to appeal to you, so be sensible. Start with the basics then make it more challenging as you go (add more kale!) People are more successful in their dietary habits when they make reasonable leaps.
Next Step - Mentally Prepare your Meals:
Start with the meals you'd like to make, and work backwards.
What makes your meals so good for you?
What needs to happen for you to work towards creating one of those meals?
If you wanted to make more than one meal in a day, what else might you need to do or think about? e.g containers, ice pack, lunch box?
What would it look like today to be just a little bit more proactive about your meals?
Look for windows of time and opportunity in your schedule. Or create them. Think about what YOU like and need in your meals — variety? routine? something that doesn't need refrigeration?
Is there something (like a slow cooker meal) that you could prep and cook in bulk then put into containers?
Next Step - Execute!
How much to prep for?
Everyone has a unique routine, there is no one size fits all method. For example, Coach James and his wife routinely meal prep every Sunday, for and hour, and have meals that last for the week. Meal prep does not have to last a week. You can also do 2 meal prep sessions 3 days apart. Or enough to last for 5 days. Or you only meal prep your Breakfasts and Lunch’s and leave dinners to be freshly made.
Once again be reasonable with what you can achieve. If you know you are unreliable on Sundays, then don’t make meal prep depend on you being free that day.
Make it as easy as possible for yourself and execute.
When you shop and stay away from temptation!
Stick to the outside edges of the supermarket, you will notice that the aisles have all the naughty food. Stick to the veggies, meat and dairy then head to the cashier.
Play some tunes or listen to Seinfeld in the back ground, or talk to your significant other.
Make it an enjoyable positive experience.
Finally - Be Inspired:
Find people that inspire you and talk about how they go about their meals.
Social media has a lot of free inspiration and recipes.
Follow Instagram Meal preppers to keep you motivated and get new ideas!
Here are some suggestion, or search #mealprep