Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Step 1 To Getting On Track: Menu Plans

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Lacey, here!

Vacation is over and reality is sinking in that this weight needs to come back off. No matter how it got there, medication or not, it's gotta go.  So, step 1 of getting back on track is MENU PLANNING.

Why? Well, for me, the quickest way to eating terrible food is to not have a plan. If dinner time comes and I don't know what I can make, I choose the easiest, unhealthiest option there is.  Take out the thinking process in that moment and you'll probably make something much better.

The simplest way to accomplish this is in three steps.
1. Make your menu plan for the week. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and any snick-snacks you want.
2. Make your grocery list based on this plan. ONLY BUY WHAT YOU NEED. Look at each recipe. Do you need 3 tomatoes for 2 different meals. Then buy 3 tomatoes. Do any of your recipes call for a bag of chips? No? THEN DON'T BUY THEM!
3. Prepare your meals based on what you wrote at the beginning of the week.

When meal time comes...no thinking. Just cooking.  And you have everything you need, exactly.

Looking for menu templates? I use this one.  I found it from this page that lists 20 free menu planner printables. Pick the one you like best and go for it.

I guarantee that if you try out menu planning for a month, you'll realize that you will spend less money on groceries (because you'll only be buying exactly what you need) and that you'll eat much healthier. When planning for future meals, you always have your best interest in mind and will plan the most healthy, yummy meals. When that time comes, you only bought groceries for those healthy meals and won't have a choice but to make them. It's all about tricking your mind, people!

 My plan for this week includes shallots & green beans, sweet potatoes, spaghetti squash with macadamia nut pesto, acorn squash with a side of broccoli, poor man shrimp (cauliflower), quinoa tabbouleh, 'cream' of broccoli soup, veggie pot pie, lots of salads, hummus wraps, oatmeal cups, and lots of fresh fruit & smoothies.

Are you a meticulous menu planner? Do you fly by the seam of your pants when it comes to meals? If so, do you find that you always choose the best options? Tell us how you prepare your meals and any tips/tricks you use to make sure you eat well!  And if you give this a try for one month, please tell us how it goes!!!

Step 2 Here.

Happy Healthy Living!

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