Okay, so I wasn’t ready to fully commit to healthy eating, but 2015 is a new year, right?! I’ve been told time and time again that your efforts in the gym won’t amount to much if your diet is whack. After witnessing this truth over the years with friends and family, I’m totally convinced that the way I have eaten will no longer cut it. I’m not getting any younger and my body doesn’t bounce back as quickly as it used to. Not only that, but a husband of a triathlete cannot live a slothful life. So, as I mentioned in my previous post, a big goal this year is to implement healthy habits into my daily life…for the long haul.
My friend and frat brother Kevin Alexander is the prime example of someone who worked out heavily but did not get the results he wanted. Kevin dealt with a dilemma that many of us face: he was not aware of many healthy meals that excited him. Most were stereotypically bland and unappetizing. How could one possibly stay on course with their diet when it was a struggle to eat food they do not enjoy?
So, Kevin did some extensive research on nutrition and began experimenting in the kitchen. This eventually led to the FitMenCook site, a recipe blog where Kevin guides us through creating healthy, delicious food. He has a very popular Instagram page where he frequently posts his short video recipes. I made the dish below yesterday. It was quick, inexpensive, and delicious:
Jarred chicken & broccoli casserole in honor of #mealprepmondayS! Ditch the cream of chicken soup, butter and mayonnaise and try this heart healthier version of a family classic. If you love chicken & broccoli casserole, you'll love this one too. Easy, practical and cheap! Click the link in my profile for FULL recipe with ingredients or go to FitMenCook.com. Tag someone who needs a new budget meal! Boom. (traduccion abajo) Cazuela de pollo y brocoli en frascos para la prep de comida! Olvida de la crema de sopa de pollo, mantequilla y mayonesa y intenta esta versión más sana de un plato clásico para la familia o usted. Facil, practico y barato para preparar. Haz clic el enlace en mi perfil o echa vistazo a FitMenCook.com para la receta completa. Haz tag a alguien quien necesita nueva comida barata. Bum.
I’ve made several of his dishes and they have all been great. I realized that I just needed a resource which provided practical steps to winning in the kitchen. Fitmencook is that for me – Kevin is changing the way people view healthy eating by the millions – and it’s only the beginning for him. Very happy for what Kevin is doing with FitMenCook, and as a result, where he is going.
Cooking Ahead: Meal Prep Days
One change that Lacey and I are experimenting with this year (and what we also got from Kevin) is having meal prep days – you cook a bunch of meals at one time to consume throughout the week. We splurged on some high end Sistema Tupperware, went grocery shopping, and cooked three days worth of meals. We decided to follow this plan:
- We go grocery shopping every Friday
- Cook On Fridays – Covers lunch and dinner Saturday through Monday
- Cook On Mondays – Covers lunch and dinner Tuesday through Friday
Lacey and I cooked three dishes this past Friday and so far so good! It took about 2.5 hours to prep and cook all three meals, but I think we can shave at least a half an hour off that time moving forward. We believe cooking in bulk will help in several ways:
- Saves time – Cook twice a week for a combined four hours instead of 5-7 times a week for 5-7 hours
- Saves money – We tend to waste produce when we don’t use them within the first few days. Now, we either cook everything or chop up produce immediately after buying it. Also, since we plan out the exact meals we’re making, our grocery list is much more focused than before
- Keeps us away from fast food – We are most vulnerable to buying fast food when we’re busy and either have no time to cook or no desire to cook. Now during those times, all we have to do is simply warm up our next dish.
- Keeps the kitchen cleaner – Only utensils and tupperware need to be washed 5 out of the 7 days we eat (unless we want to take the food out of the tupperware to have a family meal).
- You can eat on the go – Tupperware is ready to go and is microwavable, so you have no excuse to go through the drive thru while out.
- Variety – I can have two different delicious, healthy meals everyday!
These are only a few that came to my head as I was typing. I believe meal prep is a permanent lifestyle change for the seeable future. There are so many advantages to preparing meals ahead of time with only a few minor drawbacks. Complimenting this with a staunch workout schedule (coming soon) will most definitely get me to where I want to be. Just gotta continue to work the plan – if we work the plan, the plan with work. 🙂