One of the #1 questions I get as a coach is “how do you stay on track with your nutrition goals each week?” So, I thought I would tell everyone my secret…
I know there isn’t anything really “fun” about meal planning but I have to say, it is one, if not THE, most important component to your fitness success. Like the saying goes… you can’t outrun a bad diet! Good nutrition is going to be KEY to your weight loss and fitness goals and the best way to stay on track is to make sure you have a plan in place.
MEAL PLANNING TIPS: #1 CREATE A PLAN
So, where do you start. First, create a document that allows you to plan each meal (Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner), as well as, your snacks (morning and afternoon). If you don’t know where to start, use my personal weekly meal planner. It is functional and a great way to stay on track.
MEAL PLANNING TIPS: #2 FIND RECIPES YOU LOVE & STICK TO THEM
Once you have your template ready, its time to fill it up! One thing that I try to do is save recipes as I see them come up in my Facebook newsfeed, my RSS Blog Feed, or in my favorite magazines. I use a binder and organize them by entree, side dish, dessert, and snacks. I also like to create my own and organize them here on my blog (check them out on the bottom of the home page).
Breakfast is usually pretty easy since I drink the healthiest meal of my day (Shakeology) EVERY DAY! Then I make sure I have my fruits as a morning snack and typically a protein and healthy fat as my afternoon snack. That leaves the infamous “what’s for lunch or dinner?” left to plan out each week.
That’s where I like to get creative and try new recipes. The GOAL: to keep things SIMPLE! Don’t overcomplicate your meals. So, if that means you will eat the same lunch for an entire week… OK! Do it. The objective is to start somewhere and having a plan that you can CONSISTENTLY execute each day. Creating the habit of having a plan and executing it is more important than making overcomplicated meals and getting frustrated to the point of giving up.
So, when I say SIMPLE. I mean SIMPLE. Think about using no more than 5 ingredients per meal and using unlimited fresh herbs and spices. You can do A LOT with very little. Check out some of the meals under my 21 Day Fix meals & recipes page. That is another great source for meal planning inspiration!
MEAL PLANNING TIPS: #3 SAVE YOUR PLANS!
So, you’ve worked so hard creating your weekly plan, seeing it everyday on your refrigerator, and checking off meals left and right… don’t just throw it away on Sunday evening when you create your next one. SAVE IT FOR LATER! Soon you will have a collection of meal plans that you can pick and choose from which is really great on days that you are running short on time