Thursday, July 21, 2011

Iron Chef? Nah. Just well-stocked.

Okay so on Tuesday I said I’d be back on Wednesday but I was wrong. Wednesday was too busy! So I hope you didn’t collapse into a crying heap of disappointment when that happened. :)

At least once a week someone is amazed at my food preparation process and asks me how I manage to do it. I’m always at a loss for words (or at least helpful ones) because honestly, I manage to do it by just doing it! Preparing food for the week ahead saves me time and money. I don’t have much of either so it’s a priority to max them out! I will post the actual steps I take but I want to include pictures, so it might be a couple weeks before I can get to that. For now, just some handy tips.

1. Plan it out in advance. Not just what you’re going to eat for dinner, but also breakfast, lunch, and snacks. Sit down with your or or food journal and enter it in so you know that your calories and macronutrients are where you want them to be. Make a detailed list and stick to it.

2. Look for ways to buy in bulk. Healthy food can be expensive, but I manage that by eating pretty much the same things every day. Remember, food is fuel, so it doesn’t have to be exciting.

3. Invest in storage containers. I have little casserole dishes for egg white scrambles, plastic bins for fruit and salads, and snack size ziplocks for almonds and salad toppers. I know plastic is evil and I shouldn’t use it, so I am working towards more glass containers. But in the meantime, Ziplock and Glad are my friends.

4. Buy a cooler and don’t be afraid to fill it up and tote it around with you. A big one for traveling, little insulated bags for the office, even diaper bags work well!

5. Set aside an hour or so to do food prep each weekend. I usually do mine on Sunday and get breakfast, lunch, and snacks squared away for myself and kiddo. Hubs is on his own.

The perks to advance food prep are pretty obvious. I know I enjoy not being a frazzled mess in the mornings trying to figure out what I am eating or feeling like I am stuck with something I don’t really want because I didn’t plan ahead. But also, you’re more likely to skip some baked item or vending machine snack when you have a bag full of good, clean, fresh food that will make you feel loads better.

Success favors the prepared mind, and having a stash of your own food takes such a load off of navigating good nutrition. It’s well worth the time spent, and soon I’ll share my personal process for getting it all squared away.

Until then, let me know what you like to pack and bring with you! And as always, get out there and get healthy!


Anonymous said...

Good topic! This is something I need to be better at... Oh and don't you mean an "ice chest?" ;)

carterk said...

Thank you for the inspiration on a wonderful salad. I enjoyed every bite of my version. At times I need it spelled out like you did here.

Healthy Heather said...

Thanks for the comments. :) I keep trying to find time to actually take pictures and make things pretty when I am doing a Sunday food prep so I can do a proper post about it, but fate intervenes. Hopefully soon!