Meal Planning 101
What is the hardest part about your new fitness journey so far?
Is it the gym? The workouts? The cardio? The day after soreness? The stupid amount of water you’re drinking??
I am willing to guarantee that your answer is none of the above, AND I’m willing to guarantee that your answer has everything to do with the kitchen! Am I right?
Our NUTRITION! No, I didn’t say diet, I said your nutrition. In my personal opinion, a diet is a very negative way of thinking when it comes to your health. A “diet” is a quick fix, a fast way to lose a couple of pounds, a fad that your cousin, sister and Aunt did that lost them 20lbs in 20 days. A diet is restriction of foods and drink. A diet is something that you do for a short period of time, and if not careful, will have you gaining twice the amount of weight once it’s over. Because we all know, diets never last long.
So, first things first, I need you to change your mind set on the kitchen and the food that is made and eaten in the kitchen. You are no longer and never again DIETING, you are working on improving your nutrition to support the goals you are trying to accomplish. Deal?
Second, your nutrition is something that will be something you are constantly working on and will take consistency and work on your part. I know, I wish it was easier but life isn’t easy either so….here we are.
If you are currently on a training routine and you are not incorporating any sort of change in your nutrition, I would suggest maybe looking into some sort of plan. Whether that plan consist of working with a coach or just adjusting your foods to more wholesome and less processed approach, changing your food to support your new health and fitness lifestyle will be the make or break to changes you are hoping to see in your body.
Not sure how to get started? Easy!
- Start a food journal to see where you are eating on a day to day. This food journal needs to be the tell all to what you are putting in your mouth on a daily basis. You need to stop lying to yourself about your daily intake and look at what your calorie intake is on average weekly. I promise, doing this for one week will surprise the crap out of you!
- Remove the processed “crap” and start eating more wholesome, colorful foods that your body enjoys. Does that mean become a boring eater and start eating the same thing on a daily basis like the typical bodybuilder? HECK NO! If I don’t do that, why on earth would I want you to do that? What I mean is start living 80/20, 80% of your day whole foods, 20% of your day fun foods. Start getting in good protein sources, filling carb sources and healthy fats. Fill your meals with foods that are easy for your body to digest, foods that give you good energy for the day and foods that will make your workouts even better because your body is working as one solid machine!
- Plan to win! I told you earlier that this was going to take work and here is the most work you are going to do: planning your meals and making sure you have the foods to make your meals good and enjoyable. Yes, this means taking time out of your week to plan, make a grocery list, go shopping, prep the food and keep your fridge stocked throughout the week. The best “cop out” I have heard from people as to why their week was a failure was because they didn’t have food or there was nothing cooked in the house. Well, at the end of the day whose fault is that? When we plan, we win!
- Eat your Wheaties and drink your water! Ok, so when I say Wheaties, I actually mean eat your protein, get in your fruits and veggies, eat some carbs and drink water! Eat when you’re hungry, eat a balanced meal, stop when you are full and repeat. Stop forcing yourself to eat every 2-3 hours if you aren’t hungry. Are you trying to fast but don’t like it? Uh, don’t do it! Start to listen to what your body wants because I promise in the end, that’s what will work best for you and your life!
Nutrition isn’t perfect. You will slip up and have a piece of candy or have a little to much peanut butter. You won’t get in all your water or might forget to track your salad dressing!
Say it ain’t so!?
But what we can do is be as prepared as we possibly can be on a daily basis. When we plan ahead of time, we have a better chance of sticking to the change and making it a new lifestyle, not just a restart every single week!
Need help on where to start? Click the link below and start tracking your food so you can start to understand your calorie intake vs. your calorie expenditure.