Monday, January 13, 2014

My First Journey With Meal Prepping

Hey loveys,

OH MY GOD it feels like FOREVER since I last posted!! I have to admit, with last week being my first week back to school full time I wanted to really focus on that and I kind of put this little guy to the back burner for a few days. I'm sorry! I feel like a neglectful mother not looking after my child properly... or something.

My first week back to school went surprisingly well. Monday through Thursdays I have my first class at 8am. You might be thinking "Sarah, why would you CHOOSE to have 8am classes most days of the week?". Let me explain my reasoning.

1. I figure it's easier to get my body into that schedule rather than waking up at different times every day.
2. The earlier I start my classes, the earlier I end my classes and can come home (for now) and do homework, reading, and of course blogging! Eventually it will make finding time to squeeze in a part time job easier.
3. I figured most people DON'T choose to have class at 8am so I hope that the people who do come for 8am classes are serious about their studies and don't disrupt the class.

To be honest with you, getting up early is only really tough for about the first hour. I wake up at 5:50am and am usually out the door by 7am to catch the street car. I find that if I can finish a cup of coffee and my breakfast before class, I'm usually good to go, ready to learn and like 95% awake by the time I get on campus. I also actually find that I seem to have more energy throughout the day.. Maybe that's because I'm constantly doing something and not sitting at a desk staring at a computer screen for 8+ hours a day like I was doing at my old job.

That brings me to another point - I'm SO much less stressed than I was when I was working.... I can't even tell you the difference it's making. I can tell that my cortisol levels have dropped, I'm pretty quickly loosing the few extra lbs I carried around my tummy for a while (which is linked to higher cortisol rates due to stress and not eating properly) which I think is 1 part due to not being so freaking stressed and 1 part due to the fact that I'm being really good with my diet and exercise plans lately.

Last week I got in 3 visits to my personal trainer and it came up that it was posing as a challenge for me to get in all the meals I'm supposed to be in a day. I'm literally supposed to be eating a small meal every 3 hours and when I was in school and feeling things out, I wasn't doing that.. or I'd have part of a meal which in turn wasn't allowing me to have the correct amount of calories which was leaving my body in a deficit for training later in the day. So I've decided that every other day I'm going to do food prep for 2 days in total, and that started last night.


Taaadaaaa... so these are the meals that I have to take with me and not eat at home. I didn't prep dinners or anything because C and I usually cook those together and I'll just make those the day of. We have a breakfast there of chicken, steamed spinach with organic butter and some almonds and half an orange, a snack of hard boiled eggs and celery and carrots, a lunch of chicken, celery, carrots and almonds, a pre-workout meal of hard boiled eggs and blueberries, a post-workout meal of rice and chicken and I think another snack in there that I'm pairing with a protein shake. Deanna will be so happy when she sees this photo :). That was the one thing I was having trouble with, trying to figure out what to take with me to school at like 6am... but now I think I've figured it out! In class today I had some almonds, some cherry tomatoes and a protein shake. BOOM. :)

While I'm on the topic of good food, this weekend I took Jenny out for her birthday and we went to a place kind of close to us called Rodney's Oyster House. It's just that, an oyster house. I have a very public love affair with seafood and oysters are one type of seafood that I had never tried, so this was SUPER exciting for me. I don't know anything about oysters but luckily Jenny did so she ordered us some. We got 3 different kinds of oysters and 4 each (so 2 per person).


They were DELISH. They come with sauces that you can put on them and omg my mouth is drooling just thinking about it. After the oysters we shared a tuna tartare and some garlic scallops (along with a bottle of pinot noir.... oops). It was soooo so so so so so good and I want to go back there really bad. I should scout out some other seafood restaurants in Toronto and check them out, I bet I could find some really delicious places!!

On Sunday we hung out in a fancy area in Toronto called Yorkville. Jenny and I went for a coffee at a nice little cafe called Cafe Bacio. It was so cute, it had vintage photos hung on the wall and their latte's were so pretty...


A latte is probably not on my nutrition plan, but that's ok... it was worth it and it was fun spending the afternoon with Jenny. All in all it was a pretty good week! I hope I keep up the food prepping because it honestly made my morning today so much easier and less complicated when I knew what I had to take with me and could just put it in my bag instead of having to plan and weigh it all out right then.

What are some tips and tricks you have for planning ahead for meals? Are you good about it? Do you do a big prep 1x/week or a couple of smaller ones throughout the week? I have a small, condo sized fridge so I was worried about trying to fit in a week worth of meals so that's why I started with doing 2 days instead. I'd love to hear your thoughts!
Sarah

19 comments:

  1. Hi Sarah! Happy Monday. I like to do food prep too. Mainly I wash all my greens & veg for easy go to meals for the rest of the week. Lately I've been making a new dish on Sundays for the week's lunches. It has worked so far. I am saving time & I am not feeling as flustered.

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    1. Hey Crystal! That's so great! I think making a protein ahead of time is really helping me as well. I'm glad it's working out for you!!

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  2. I had 8am class everyday last year and I thought I would hate it and there were some mornings particularly cold winter mornings that I wished I could just sleep in and not have to leave the comfort of my bed but looking back I loved the routine. I thrived on it. Its something that I have been trying to add back into my life this semester as I don't have classes at the same time each day.

    Yorkville is probably one of my favourite places in Toronto. Such cute little shops and restaurants. My friends and I love going in the summer!

    Jaclyn
    teacupsandcake.blogspot.ca

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    1. Hey Jaclyn! I'm starting to like it as well! I think maybe I was sleeping too much before because I really do feel like I have more energy these days! I LOVE Yorkville in the summer!! I can't wait to spend more time there this summer!! Maybe we should meet up for a cocktail! :)

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  3. I am impressed you are LESS stressed going back to school! Must have been a good choice! I do prep generally 2 snacks and 2 meals at the start of the week.

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    1. Hahaha oh my god Danielle it was an AMAZING choice. Life is SO MUCH BETTER! That's awesome! Thanks for sharing your prep plan!

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  4. I've started making things in my slow cooker on Saturdays and Sundays so I can package them up and put them in the freezer. That way I don't have to worry about making lunches/dinners during the week.

    fromrunwaystorealways.blogspot.ca

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    1. Oooo that is a great idea. I've also seem people freezing in freezer bags stuff they just dump into the slow cooker so they don't have to prep things that way. Thanks for sharing Kaitlyn!

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  5. Prepping is totally key - and this whole 30 thing (day 11!!) is really driving that home. I can't just grab a snack, its next to impossible.
    Thankfully I don't bore easily, so i've been making a big pot of chili (beanless - damn you legumes) a couple of times a week for my roommate and I along with 'meat muffins' (really not as gross as it sounds). That way I have lunch and breakfast on gym days sorted out and I just make dinner when I'm home. Also helps prevent wasting money at the grocery store because I only shop for ingredients I plan to use right away!

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    1. YAYE! Congrats on 11 days - you've beat me and Krysten now!! Haha. That's an awesome plan. I wish I had a bigger fridge so I could make more food and store it in the fridge... I need to try these meat muffins haha, they sound like a hit!

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  6. Happy Monday! I am liking this weekly food prep thing ( I am in week 2 ). It takes out the guesswork of that I am having for lunch and dinner every day. I try to make things that I can 'Mix and match" if I want. And since I like working out right after work, I can still do that and eat at a normal time -not when I should be making tea and relaxing for the night.
    I have never had oysters. My husband likes them. I had no idea there were different kinds to choose from. Once again you taught me something!

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    1. Ooo that's exciting about prepping.. that's what I do too, mix and match stuff and then put it all together in 1 ziplock bag (I have to eat a certain amount of macronutrients at every meal, so I plop it all together into 1 baggie). OMG I just learned about oysters too so don't worry about not knowing.... I honestly don't remember the types now... Brain fart. I'm glad you kind of learned something though lol!

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  7. I've dabbled in food prep before but it never stuck. This time I'm determined to figure out why and find a way to make it work. Nothing worse than floundering at 6:00, starving, trying to figure out what to make. I'm doing a mix of frozen, already cooked meals; frozen baggies of stuff to throw in the slow cooker and cook and just making sure I have all the sides ready to go for meat/veggie type nights. Friday is my food prep day and last week I made all 5 dinners for this week - I'm excited to see how it goes!

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    1. Ooo that sounds SUPER successful!! I hope you stick to it, I know how it feels about being so hungry you just grab whatever... I did that a lot too, except what I usually grabbed was doritos or chocolate lol. This is helping me eat healthier too!! Let me know how your prepping goes!

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  8. I have found with meal planning, to sit down and write down the recipes i'm going to use and where I got the recipes from, and then writing down the ingredients I need, prior to going grocery shopping.
    I'm looking forward to getting back into my normal routine including meal plannning. I'm out and about with holiday programs I'm just winging it at the moment.

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    1. Hmm that's a good idea!! I don't make a lot of recipes at this time because I'm sticking with a really basic, clean diet and I don't bore easily so it's working right now. That's a good idea about planning a list and all that jazz. I wing it on holidays as well - that's what holidays are for!! :)

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  9. I like prepping my snacks and veggie ahead of time, and it makes it easier to cook my chicken beforehand for my lunches. I find it extremely helpful to have healthy snacks and meals ready to go when I am hungry so I won't overeat!

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    1. YES I agree!!! I've saved a ton of money not spending it on buying food out which is really nice too.

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  10. I usually find going back to school a bit stressful (especially the first month after the semester begins) and then try to eat something unhealthy. I'm inspired by your positive and healthy attitude. Will try to go to bed earlier and meal prepping and make myself healthier this year :-)

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