Adopting the “Leaving Room” mentality for a primary and necessary item that we all think about on an hourly basis. Food. This mentality doesn’t force anybody to switch over to bland and uninteresting food, yet it allows you to free up time while still enjoying the delicious meals that you want to have for the entire week at your fingertips. And it’s as simple as following a few simple rules while completing meal preparation.
“What’s for dinner??” A question my mom used to get from me quite often. “Look on the counter, see what I took out to thaw” she would usually say. At the very least, she’d plan out what protein she was going to make. She’d still have to come home, pick a veggie, pick a carb, and THEN cook all of it. Poor lady, thanks Mom! Now that I’m on my own, I have to make my own food. If you cook your own meals, you can attest to the fact that preparing, cooking, eating, and cleaning up after meals is rather time-consuming. This is where preparing your meals ahead of time can become a lifesaver for the college student or post-graduate who wants to start living a healthy lifestyle but doesn’t think they have the time to do it.
Last year I started prepping my meals on Sunday for the upcoming week. Although everyone thinks it’s so difficult, the hardest part of doing this is creating the mindset to try it out. On an average day if I had to guess, and although it’s probably an underestimation, it would take me 60 – 75 minutes to cook, eat, and then clean-up after dinner. That’s at least 7 hours a week spent on dinner, not even considering lunch at this moment. My Sunday meal prep would take 3 hours. Total. That’s 3 hours to prepare, cook, and clean up 15 different meals. 3 hours and my lunch, dinner and 6th meal (I eat a lot) are prepared for the entire work week. Beauty of this is that I don’t waste time everyday thinking about whatsfadinner, or making dinner. My meals get pulled out of the fridge, thrown in the microwave, and boom, they’re done.
Don’t look at meal prep as something only juicehead gym-goers do, and don’t look at it as dieting. It doesn’t have to be bland chicken and white rice, it can be whatever you want it to be. Look at meal prep as a way to free up some time during the week, as well as a way to guarantee you’ll be eating. I know I’m not the only one who has gotten home from work late and went to bed instead of cooking, not because I wasn’t hungry, but because I didn’t feel like cooking. I can go on and on about the benefits of preparing your meals. See firsthand how you can free up 4 hours a week just by putting in the effort on Sunday. Use a few of these tips to keep your meal prep simple and easy while cooking decent meals:
As you can imagine, all of my friends talk to me about fitness. Ask me for tips, share what they’re doing, collaborate on ideas, and so on. I love seeing what others are doing, and really enjoy when I learn from someone else and am inspired to try what they’re doing. With that, I HAVE to share with you one of the best meal preps I’ve ever seen. My good friend Marissa (@RissFitness on Instagram) She’s always posting cool ways to incorporate wellness into your day, meals, etc. All of her meals for the week are in these jars (or bags for the veggies). Now if you’re like me, or anyone else you’re probably thinking ‘why mason jars?’. Well, because you can freeze, heat, wash, and cook with them. They don’t retain the nasty smell of some foods, or the all too familiar “protein powder dank”.
Hopefully this post helps you get over the fear of meal prepping, and maybe Marissa’s meal prep will spark your creativity!