Food Prepping

Wednesday 3 May 2017 by

Food prep, Meal prep, Healthy, Fitness, Food

Every Sunday, all across the UK, there is a swathe of people “food prepping”. It really can be as boring as it sounds, but it is also one of the most effective ways of staying on track when it comes to nutrition and fitness. Food prepping has never been a strength for me – I love eating out too much and spend most of my days rushing hither and thither and grabbing things on the go. It’s not easy to do that when you’re gluten intolerant, so I used to survive on readily available junk food.

Not so any more. I can neither afford to keep it up, nor is it any good for my 2018 goals. So I’m staring down Tupperware boxes and *shudder* meal prepping. However, if you’re like me and find it all a bit of a chore, here’s some tips I’ve found help.

Make it interesting

Choose colourful Tupperware, make bright stickers for them. Anything that makes it a bit more exciting than plastic boxes stacked in the fridge. Put the days of the week on them so you know what you’re eating when, and also make sure there is a “treat” in there somewhere at some point during the week that you can look forward to.

Pick meals you actually like

It’s all well and good making 5 portions of the same thing, but if you’re sick of it by Day Two, you’re not going to get very far. Pick meals that not only last for a few days, but that you could happily eat day in and day out – because that’s exactly what you’re going to be doing.

Have a menu

Choose a few meals you know how to cook and you like eating often, then rotate them each week so it doesn’t get dull. Take in to account how busy you are that week, whether you’ll need to heat it up (and therefore if you have access to a microwave or hob), and what the weather is doing.

Food prep your food prep

I make a shopping list based on my diary for that week, so that I don’t have leftovers. If I know I’m out for two lunches, then I buy enough for just five. I also shop online – you have to pay for the delivery, but it saves you the cost of grabbing things as you walk around. If I go to a supermarket, I end up with double the amount I intended because I spot stuff I fancy. Have a think about what snacks you’re going to have, when you’re exercising and so will probably want more food, and how much time you have to actually cook it all up. It’s no good creating elaborate meal plans you don’t have time to cook!

Tell your friends

Friends and family need to be on board with this almost as much as you are. If your friends want to meet for lunch – suggest a picnic in the park when you can bring your own food. If your family want a family night in, either choose that as a “day off”, or ask them to cook up something that’s on your list. I’m terrible when it comes to this; I will always go for dinner with my friends rather than go home to my pre-prepared salmon. The only way to get around it is to ask your friends over for the salmon instead!

Pick food that will last

It’s no good getting halfway through the week and realising that your food isn’t as appealing as it was at the beginning of the week. Foods that perish quickly should be accounted for in food prepping – you don’t want to throw it away at the end of the week.

And, in the end if I’m completely honest, meal prepping is always going to be boring. But stick on a favourite TV show or podcast and just do it. You’ll thank yourself later.

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