One habit that helps me tremendously in my personal life and my business is meal prepping! I try to stick to a healthy diet and eat whole, unprocessed foods as often as possible. The only problem with this is that in order to stick to this diet, it requires being able to cook all of my meals. Gone are the days of frozen pizza and quick microwave dinners!
While my health is important to me, my time is precious as well. This is why I love meal prepping so much. Meal prepping for the week cuts down on the time that I have to prepare and cook dinner when I come home from work which gives me more time to relax with my family and work on my business. Before I started meal prepping, I would have to spend at least one hour getting dinner together every night if I wanted to keep it healthy.
Here are some reasons why I love meal prepping:
- My health is a priority in my life and meal prepping allows me to have healthy options available.
I used to have terrible digestion issues, stomach cramps, and reactions to food that I ate ALL THE TIME! This was because of all of the processed foods, sugar, dairy, and gluten that I was consuming on a daily basis. Meal prepping allows me to have healthy meals on hand so I don’t have to fall back into my old bad habits of heating up a pizza or microwaving a frozen dinner that I know would cause me to have a bad reaction.
Health is one of the most important things in your life. If you don’t have your health, it will make everything in your life more difficult. When I was having bad reactions to food, it would put me in a bad mood which would affect my relationships and I also just felt sick all the time which put a damper on my productivity levels. Meal prepping makes sure that I always have healthy options available so that when I don’t have time to cook, I do not have to choose an unhealthy option.
2. I can dedicate more time to things that matter most
Meal prepping saves me from having to spend time cooking dinner every night so that I can instead use that time to enjoy relaxing and connecting with my family, working on my business, and exercising. I like to go the gym after work so by the time I get home, it is typically close to 7pm. When I have to spend an hour or more cooking dinner, I am left with no time for myself. However, when I prep my meals for the week, I have that additional hour to spend on things that matter most to me without jeopardizing my health.
Meal prepping is super simple because I just make larger portions of what I would already make anyways so it doesn’t really add that much time on the days that I prep either. Since I would already have to gather the ingredients and clean up anyways, it does not add a significant amount of time on the days I like to prep my meals, which is typically Sunday afternoons for me.
Tips for meal prepping:
- Prepare the basics
I personally do not prep entire meals. I prefer to make basic items that typically take longer to cook during my meal prep sessions and then supplement other ingredients throughout the week to make meals. For example, I typically make up a large batch of brown rice, beans, and chicken on Sundays because I can use those as the base for my meals throughout the week. Then, when it is time to cook, I just have to saute up whatever veggie I am in the mood for that night and I am able to make a meal that would typically take an hour or more to make into a 10-15 minute thing. I prefer this method because I am able to mix up my meals throughout the week based on what I am in the mood for.
2. Have easy to cook veggies on hand
Vegetables are one thing I do not like to cook ahead of time because they do not taste the same to me as leftovers. I like to have easy to cook vegetable in the fridge at all times like broccoli, spinach, kale, or green beans that I can saute or steam quickly to add to my prepped ingredients. I also like to have celery, carrots, and fruit on hand for those times when I need an extra snack so that I cannot be tempted with sweets or other unhealthy choices.
3. Make a soup or a stew
One thing that I love to make ahead is a soup or a stew. They stay good all week and I can make enough to last 2-3 meals easily. I like to make crock-pot dinners because I can make larger amounts that I can take for lunch or use for dinner. This is one of the easiest things to prep because there is not much effort needed after the preparation stage. I also like to make soup or stew midweek because I can let it cook while I am at work and I’ll have dinner ready for me when I get home and leftovers for the rest of the week as well!
Meal prepping is one habit that I use in my life to create more time and freedom for myself during the week to spend on things like my family, hobbies, and business. It typically does not take too much additional time and I save more time than I spend doing it! I like to prep the basics so that I am still able to have variety in my meals throughout the week and that works the best for me.
If you’re interested in meal prepping, you can create your own system that works for you and your schedule. Some people like to prep entire meals and have them ready to grab and go each day for lunch and dinner and that is a great option as well!
Do you use meal prepping so that you can dedicate more of your precious time towards your family, hobbies, or business?
Mindset & Habit Coach