Meal prepping can be a tough thing for anyone in this busy world. Some people have the time to do and others don’t, or think they don’t. Here are some different suggestions on how to fit meal prepping into your life!
- Start Small. Meal prepping doesn’t have to be an all day event or even consistent at first. It doesn’t have to include a stove or a crockpot at first. Don’t get yourself overwhelmed, just try to start the meal prepping habit. Start out doing 3 day’s of any meal and pick the easiest! If you want to pack your lunch, start with that. If that is too tough, then start with easy snacks. Anything that “gets your feet wet” will give you more confidence and encourage you to do it again.
- Pick a Specific Day or Don’t. “I will start on Monday.” We have all said that. It doesn’t have to apply to meal prepping. You can certainly choose to do meal prepping on Sunday or Monday, but try doing it when you can. If your least busiest day is Wednesday, do it then! If you do it on a Sunday one week and a Tuesday the next, who cares! At least you are making progress and starting the habit.
- Don’t make meals complex. If you make 3 sandwiches in advance for 3 lunches to take to work, you have just meal prepped! Meal prepping can also include putting a serving size of trail mix into separate bags so you can grab and go. See, that’s not so hard and takes less than 15 minutes! You then have about 6-8 prepped sandwich bags!
- Freeze Your Meals. If you are used to meal prepping for a few days, try doubling the recipe and put the extra in the freezer. It will keep for 3-4 months and you can pull it out when you haven’t had a week to prep. This rule is good for cooked food such as casseroles or any type of meat, veggies and healthy carb! Ex: Chicken with a sweet potato and roasted veggies.
- Get Containers. Once you get into meal prepping hot meals, find containers that suit your needs. For example: sandwich bags for nuts, Round/square containers for casseroles, or Containers with separated areas for meat, veggies and carbs. Again, make it easy on yourself and start small.
- Practice, Practice, Practice. Practice makes perfect, but don’t beat yourself up or give up if you miss a week or even two! Try to use foods you like and easy recipes that will keep you interested. In the long run it will save you time!
Alexandra Craig B.S., ACSM, Pn1, Pn2
Owner – Personal Level Fitness