The old cliche quotes ‘fail to prepare, prepare to fail’ and it applies to most things! However, i’m going to tell you about my experience of how important ‘meal prep’ has been to my health and fitness journey and offer some advice on how to tackle those supermarket aisles!
I only began meal prepping at the beginning of 2016, my reasons? Now I felt more confident in the gym, my thoughts turned to how my nutrition was stacking up against my weight training, it was time to take the high protein diet more seriously and really take responsibility for my progress. After all, it doesn’t matter how hard you train in the gym, coupled up with a bad diet – you will struggle to see any change.
There are so many benefits to meal-preppin’
- SAVES MONEY – stops you ‘nipping past the shop’ on your way home from work or ordering a Chinese (or whatever takeaway floats your boat). I used to spend around £5 a day on lunches during the working week too, meal-prep means everything is taken care of and because you spent time preparing it all – you will eat it.
- Nicely leads me onto LESS SNACKING – when meal-prepping you usually have a list to take to the supermarket, this means you aren’t swayed easily to the ‘confectionery’ aisle – you might also find you feel fuller and have no need to snack.
- CONTRIBUTE TO YOUR FITNESS GOALS – you will tend to make healthier choices as you have some time to plan how best to fuel your body for the week ahead. Your body requires a balance of protein, carbs and fat to help improve strength and even contribute to weight loss.
- SAVES TIME, MORE ROOM FOR ACTIVITIES – trust me! there’s no better feeling than finishing work and knowing you’re not going to spend an hour in the kitchen making your dinner, and that’s after you finally decide what you want to eat! If you are an evening gym go-er this will serve you even better. Why not spend the extra time doing something fun or relaxing – have a bath, phone a friend/relative or go for a walk! Life is to be lived outside of 9-5.
Hopefully this has convinced you to give it a try! I would also like to share a top tip with you that I find very helpful…
Download Myfitnesspal and log what you would like to eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks – this will not only provide a comprehensive and on-track shopping list BUT you will also be able to see how many grams of protein, carb and fat you will be consuming each day (as well as calories). This helps you make educated decisions on your nutrition for the week, gym-ing a lot? load up on protein and complex carbs! busy week ahead with limited time for gym? reconsider and adjust, simples!
Above is an example of a simple lunch for me (just out the freezer!), diced steak, broccoli and sweet potato!