My goals are always in the back of my head these days. Goals about improving my diet (i.e. eating more veggies, eating less processed crap, and getting back into a workout routine). I guess that’s a good thing as forward progress toward achieving them is necessary. I think it’s because I need to feel productive when the day is done. Do you ever feel that way too?
I’m happy to say that most of the time, I do get my veggies for the day and I do get some kind of workout in. Today, I had lunch at St. Louis Bread Co. (Panera for those outside the Lou area) and had a great salad and half a sandwich. Their classic side salad is huge (I should have taken a pic, grrrr) and at only 80 calories its a winner in my book. As for working out, I recently posted about my “at home” workouts using Les Mills On Demand, check it out here. But I finally got back to my regular Monday night BodyPump class and got to team teach it with a wonderful instructor, Erica who was covering while I was on maternity leave. She is an incredible instructor and I’m very grateful she taught phenomenal classes while I was gone. Getting back to an energy filled class is like a drug addict falling off the wagon except my drug of choice are endorphins.
But what happens when life gets in the way and despite all your best planning and you don’t get the things done that you want? Do you throw your hands up in the air and say forget it? It’s tempting sometimes.
Today is a great example of what I mean. Right before nap time, I started to plan what I’m going to do with my free time. Write a blog post, get a quick workout in and maybe a shower. And that is a no no. Because anytime I start to plan for “me time” that’s a clear indication that both kids will not sleep at the same time. And of course, once Corrine was sleeping, Joelle woke up. And then I was on the phone with my mom getting frustrated that my house was a mess, one kid was crying and all I wanted was some time to get stuff done that I wanted done. Luckily, that only happened for a little bit (Phew…. Joelle finally went to sleep right next to me as I type this).
So yes, plans don’t always go your way. But you find a way to roll with it. So the point of my post today has to do with meal planning and what happens when meals aren’t planned in advance.
I’m usually good about planning meals on Saturday or Sunday and getting all the necessary groceries. But it didn’t happen this weekend. Our little family of five, gotta include our dog Cody, had a relaxing weekend at my parents house including baby snuggles, a few drinks, and running a 5k (yay!).
Now, It’s Tuesday and I’m looking a blank meal board and a somewhat empty fridge/pantry. I’m not about to tackle grocery shopping with little ones. I’m not that brave. So what’s the plan for the rest of the week?
Here are some tips to get you through
- Always have healthy staples on hand that aren’t perishable. I usually go for fresh veggies and fruits, but in a pinch there is nothing wrong with popping a frozen bag of veggies in the microwave. They don’t loose any of the nutrients and it’s convenient. Or try a bagged chopped salad and top with any kind of protein. Pre-cooked chicken breasts, deli lunch meat, left overs, or even beans. You’re paying for the convenience but its worth it sometimes.
- Think simple. There’s no rule that says a healthy meal has to be elaborate. Fill half your plate with some kind of fruit and/or veggie. Leave one quarter for a lean meat or protein of some kind, and the other quarter for a starch. Some examples in our house are: turkey roll ups with cheese served with green beans and some kind of fruit. Grilled cheese with turkey with frozen mixed veggies. Scrambled eggs (diced veggies in the eggs) on toast with a frozen fruit smoothie.
- Let someone else do the cooking. There are tons of ways to eat out, ordering in, and take out sensibly. But that’s another post all together. I’ll just give you some ideas. Many pizza chains have rolled out new lower calorie options. Pizza hut and Papa Murphy’s both have some thin crust pizzas that are really tasty and quick. I love Chipotle for the simplicity of their ingredients. Ditch the tortilla and get a salad with your choice of protein, grilled veggies, salsa and guacamole. Basic take away for letting someone else cook for you: Do you own research to find quality ingredients, minimal processing and mind your portions.
What other tips would you suggest?