Breakfast: You're strapped for time in the morning, so you run out the door without breakfast only to discover an hour later that you're STARVING. You rummage around in your car, purse, or desk only to discover old gum, cough drops, and some leftover Halloween candy. Giving in to that gnawing feeling in your stomach, you pop a Kit-Kat and feel a little bit better, but it's not enough. You walk into the lounge at work and see a box displaying the most beautiful doughnuts you've ever seen and you think, "Perfect! This will do nicely for breakfast. Don't mind if I do!" Well, I mind if you do. Your decision not to have a healthy breakfast not only drove you to make bad choices in the morning. That sugar high that you're going to go on from starting your day with processed garbage is going to set you up for failure the rest of the day. You're going to crash once the sugar is processed through your body and you're going to be on the hunt for something to pick you up. Which leads us to lunch.
Lunch: Not only did you run out of time to eat breakfast, but you had nothing in the house to grab for your lunch today. Some friends at work are going to a nearby restaurant, so you decide to tag along. There, you will likely indulge in a lunch portioned to serve a family of four, and maybe a bread basket on top of that.
2-3pm slump: That heavy lunch is making you wilt like a flower at your desk so you're looking for a little pick-me-up. A diet soda, something that comes in a wrapper from the vending machine, back to the lounge to see if there are any doughnuts left... We've all been there.
Dinner: You come home exhausted from the day and are just looking for simple. If you don't have healthy staples on hand, this could end up being a frozen pizza, a box of macaroni, or worse.
The moral of this sad story is that failing to plan ahead is going to lead you to fail yourself and all that you sweat and strive for. Taking just a little bit of time each week to shop smart and prepare some healthy grab-and-go items will save you time, calories, and even money!
Some ideas to consider:
*Keep washed and cut fruits and vegetables in the fridge, already portioned into zipper bags or containers
*Hard-boil a dozen eggs, peel, and keep in a bowl in the fridge
*Whip up my favorite kale salad recipe and portion it into containers to keep in the fridge: http://gymjunkie-katie.blogspot.com/2014/04/kale-salad.html
*Make a batch of veggie burritos, place in individual zipper bags and freeze to grab for a quick lunch or dinner: http://gymjunkie-katie.blogspot.com/2014/04/veggie-burritos.html
*Portion out nuts and seeds into zipper bags - store them in your cupboard, purse, glove compartment, and desk
*Place 1 C milk, 1/2 C Greek yogurt, 1 C kale, 2/3 C frozen fruit in the blender at night and store in the fridge. In the morning, blend it while you're putting your shoes on, grab it and go.
*Grill some chicken breasts and keep them sliced up in the fridge to grab for salads and sandwiches
Okay, okay... easier said than done, I know. This is especially easy to say when it's summer break and all this girl has is time! I realize it takes time out of your day and week. My food prep day during the school year is usually Saturday. I spend a couple of hours every Saturday morning when I get home from teaching my Spin class chopping, baking, blending, packing, etc. BUT, that's all the time I spend all week! My nights are free (to do work) and my mornings aren't rushed so I can get a good, long sweat in before heading to work. If you don't take the time for your health, who will?