6-Day Healthy Eating Challenge – Day 4
Welcome to Day 4 of your healthy eating challenge. How’s it going so far? Are you finding the challenges, well, challenging? Are you learning anything about yourself that you didn’t know – or maybe just weren’t paying attention to?
So, we’ve covered a whole lot in the first 3 days of the challenge – Portion control, measuring food, mindful eating…now? We’re tackling something that makes me break out into hives:
Meal Prepping and Planning.
So, this is all the rage – It usually involves taking an entire day and prepping your meals for the week.
When you start reading about it, your head explodes – At least mine did. Frankly, I’m no genius in the kitchen so when I started looking into this I was like – First, I don’t like to cook. Second, I don’t want to go to the grocery store and then spend all day Sunday cooking stuff.
But, planning meals is a huge help when you’re trying to lose weight and it’s entirely possible to start the process in little bitty baby steps.
Trust me. Let’s go.
Your Day 4 Challenge – Plan One Day’s Worth of Meals
What You Need:
- Some paper and a pen or however you enjoy recording things
- Recipes or just whatever you normally cook
- Groceries for said recipes
Planning Your Meals
For this challenge, this is your process:
- Sometime this week, set aside about 30 minutes or so to sit down and plan out your meals for one day. They don’t have to be fancy meals or anything, although I am going to give you some recipes. You’ll need to figure out what you’re eating for breakfast, snacks, lunch, and dinner.
- Make your grocery list (if you need to go to the store) with everything you need for those meals. Double up on everything if you want to eat the same meals again sometime this week. That’s a little extra meal-prep for you.
- Totally Optional – Figure out which things you could easily make ahead and keep in the fridge ready to go. This is great for snacks – Putting some nuts in a baggie, cutting up some veggies, or even cutting up onions, carrots, or whatever might be in your dinner that evening.
- Plan when you’re going to go to the store and put it on your calendar.
- Pick your day and go for it.
Why This Works
What do you do when you’re hungry and you don’t have anything healthy ready to go? I know what I do – CARBS – Crackers, chips…and more crackers and chips.
That isn’t terrible, but you’re going to eat much healthier if you already have stuff around and/or know what you’re eating.
And it’s such a huge stress relief to not have to scramble for food when you and your family are starving.
Meal and Snack Ideas
- A handful of almonds
- A cube of cheese with some whole grain crackers
- Whole grain crackers with hummus
- Sliced cucumbers or other veggies with a little dressing to dip them in
- A cup of popcorn
- Sliced apples with almond butter
- A slice of whole grain bread with peanut butter
- Overnight oats
- Oatmeal and fresh or canned fruit
- Cereal and almond milk
- Scrambled eggs with spinach and low fat cheese
- Yogurt with fresh fruit
- A frozen waffle with peanut butter
- Mason jar salads
- Salad with salmon, chicken or other lean protein
- Grilled cheese with tomato soup
- Tuna Wrap (1 whole-wheat wrap, half a 6-ounce can of tuna, ¼ cup non-fat Greek yogurt, ½ a celery stalk, chopped, 3 slices roasted red peppers, 1 handful of baby spinach, 1 squeeze of lemon juice)
- Turkey Wrap (whole wheat wrap, turkey, goat cheese, hummus, baby spinach)
- Cilantro Lime Salmon Bowls
- Rustic Smoky Glazed Chicken & Veggie Bake
- Miso Chicken Ramen
- Baked Salmond with Asparagus
- Slow Cooker Meals
What can you learn from this experiment? Here are some things to pay attention to and to ask yourself:
- Was it a challenge to plan your meals ahead of time?
- Did you feel more in control knowing exactly what you were going to eat?
- How did it feel to be prepared for every meal, even for just one day?
- Did you eat healthier foods because you planned ahead?
- How could you take this further? Maybe do this one day a week, for example.
- How can you reward yourself for doing a good job?
Healthy One-Day Meal Plan
To help you out, I’ve put together a calendar of meals for one day, including the recipes and shopping list. Here you go:
One Day Meal Plan and Shopping List
Okay – there you go. Questions, comments, sarcastic remarks? Please email me and I’ll help you out.