Tag Archives: meal planning

Healthy Lifestyle Challenge #2 – Meal Planning

Hey everyone! I hope you are having a great weekend!

Have you been drinking half of your body weight in ounces of water? Remember, not only was this the challenge for yesterday, but its the challenge for this whole first week. Drinking water is great for our bodies. It aids in digestion, helps rid the body of toxins, give us glowing healthy skin, and actually gives us a boost in energy!

 

TODAY’S CHALLENGE:

Plan this week’s meals.

Why?

When working to establish healthy eating habits, meal planning is key! Here are some of the many benefits of Meal Planning:

  • Stress Less – There is no panic when its time for dinner since all of the thought and preparation (meal selection, grocery shopping) is already done. With your meals planned and stuck on the fridge, you know what you’re cooking when, can plan for easy meals or leftovers on busy days, and avoid the annoying “What are we going to have for dinner tonight” last minute scrambling.

 

  • Save Money – Once you’ve planned your meals, write up a shopping list based on your plan. Only buying what you need will save you money, prevent impulse buying and save you multiple trips to the grocery store.

 

  • Eat Healthy – Meal planning will ensure you and your family are eating healthy balanced meals. It will also prevent last minute trips to the drive thru or pizza pick-up. Because you have organized your week in advance, you will have everything you need to prepare healthy meals and snacks. Meals prepared at home are pretty much guaranteed to be healthier than eating out, plus, you have more control over the ingredients in your meals and serving sizes.

 

  • Save Time – By planning meals and grocery shopping accordingly, you will be making fewer trips to the grocery store. You will also only have to search through your cookbooks only once a week. Effective planning for leftovers means lunches or next day dinners are also taken care of.

 

How?

  1. Grab a sheet of paper – or print off this one!
  2. Get your cookbooks out and your post-it notes – flag all of the recipes you want to use for the week. Quickly jot down any of the ingredients you will need on the post-it note you’ve used to mark the recipe.
  3. Decide which meals you do not need to make. Using your planning sheet, put an “X” through any of the meals you know will be eaten out of the house and mark days when you are short on time and will be having leftovers.
  4. Then, match up the recipes you’ve chosen with the openings on the schedule. If any meals need preparation beforehand, I’ll list them in the “Prep For Tomorrow” section to help me stay organized. (For example, if I need to take the chicken out of the freezer the night before, I make a note so I don’t forget.)
  5. Plan your snacks for each day. Be sure to have at least 2 healthy choices available.
  6. Create your weekly grocery list. You may want to make a second list for a mid-week run to grab more fresh fruit and vegetables.

    Here’s our meal plan for the week:

 

 

Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
Breakfast Stuffed French Toast

(CE Comfort Foods p. 12)

Smoothie Smoothie Smoothie Oatmeal pancake Smoothie Cottage Cheese Pancakes

(Eat Clean Diet p. 80)

Lunch BLT’s Leftover Kebabs Lunch with Pam Leftover Chicken
Veggies & Hummus
Leftover Pork Tenderloin

Veggies & Hummus

Tuna warp

Veggie & Hummus

Grilled Turkey &Cheese Sandwiches
Dinner Beef Kebabs

(CE Mag July 2012 p. 44)

Penne Pasta with Fresh Veggies Grilled Chicken

Corn on the cob

Salad

Pork Tenderloin

Grilled Veggies

Omelets Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches Date Night!!
Snacks   Almonds

Apple

Macaroons (2)

Hard boiled egg

pear

slim cake

Macaroons (2)

Apple

Fiber Bar

Slim Cake

Pear

Smoothie

Macaroons (2)

apple

almonds

Macaroons

berries

mixed nuts

Prep For Tomorrow Bake Coconut Macaroons

Boil Eggs

Take chicken out of freezer Prep veggies for lunches   Prep tuna   Meal plannning & Grocery list for next week
Other   Staff Meeting Ball Hockey 9pm Gym 7:45pm Gym
5:45pm
   
Groceries Needed beef
peppers
red onion
peppers asperagus
snap peas
  sweet potato
peppers
pork
hummus
    cottage cheese
greek yogurt

So, it’s time to get planning! Choose health meals and snacks, make your grocery list, and put the time in today to make your week healthier and happier!

Let me know how it goes! You can even share your plan (or the link to it) in the comments section below!

Have a great day!

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The Week Ahead – I’m All Set!

So yesterday’s Elf For Health Challenge was to plan this week’s meals and workouts. This is actually part of my weekly routine and I cannot stress how valuable planning is to staying on track.

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So, this week looks a little something like this:

WORKOUTS

Sunday

  • cardio – 8:15am BodyAttack

Monday

  • cardio5km Run – Period 1
  • strength99 Workout – Period 5 class

Tuesday

  • cardio – 5:45pm BodyAttack
  • strengthAb Workout – Period 5 class

Wednesday

  • cardio5km Run – Period 5 class

Thursday

  • cardioSpinning DVD – Period 5 class

Friday

  • cardioRPM 5:45pm
  • strengthCrossFit Workout – Period 5

Saturday

  • cardio 5km Run

MENU

I’ve planned for dinners that are substantial enough to provided leftovers for lunches the next day.

Sunday – Ham, scalloped potato, broccoli

Meatless Monday – Vegetarian Frittata

Tuesday – Leftovers

Wednesday – Eat Clean Lasagna – pg. 276 The Eat-Clean Diet Cookbook

Thursday – Chicken Fajita’s

Friday – Pizza and Beer – woohoo! made it though another week – only one more week until Christmas holidays!

Saturday – Roast beef dinner

Snacks

WEEKLY GOALS

1. Limit myself to only ONE Starbucks Chai Latte.

2. No eating after 7pm.

3. No pop!

4. Run at least twice, preferably 3 times.

This week’s Elf For Health Challenges are:

Monday – Track your water intake – try to drink your body weight in oz of water.

Tuesday – Clean out the fridge and pantry – get rid of expired and unhealthy things. I will also be gathering some items to drop off at our local foodbank for those in need this holiday season.

Wednesday – Eat veggies at every meal.

Thursday – Buy coffee for the person behind you in line. I’m not a coffee drinker, but will make that my Starbucks day and treat the person behind me as I pick up my chai latte!

Friday – Workout out with a buddy.

Saturday – Donate to a holiday charity in your area.

I’m super pumped for Round 2 of the Elf For Health Challenge 🙂 Can’t wait to find out who my new elf is!

Thanks to Sarah for being such an awesome elf! You rock!

Have you got your week planned out?
What’s your schedule look like?
Any great recipes you’d like to share?

Three Things Thursday – The Countdown is On!

Seriously, I can’t believe it’s already Thursday – time is passing way too quickly!

1. 7 more sleeps! This time next week I will be on a plane for Mexico! I am so excited for a fun, relaxing, warm holiday with my husband! I cannot wait!

i love mexico

2. Only 18 days until I go back to work!

3. Which only leaves 10 days to get stuff done around the house! Yikes!

Theres_so_much

Friday’s tasks:

    • Complete return to work forms
    • Buy birthday gift
    • Organize clothes to give away

This weekends tasks

    • Summer tires away
    • Lawn furniture away
    • Get bed frame for Ryan
    • De-clutter – get rid of all the junk!
    • Get winter boots for the kids
    • Prep meals for kids while we are away

Do you have any suggestions for toddler meals I can make ahead of time? I’d love to get some new ideas!

Am I Crazy?

So last week I received a call from a colleague of mine asking if I might be interested in returning to work early from my maternity leave. She is scheduled to have surgery at the end of November and wondered if I’d like to come in and cover her classes while she is off.

In case you didn’t already know, I am a high school Health and Physical Education teacher on leave with baby #2 (Tanner) until just after the Christmas Holidays . I am scheduled to return to work on January 7, 2013. I’m pretty sure I have the sweetest job in the whole world – my teaching schedule is usually made up of one Healthy Active Living class (a regular phys.ed class – team and individual sports and games) and two Fitness classes (weight lifting, running, TRXing, circuit training, tabata…you name it!). Seriously, how awesome is that!

So, after thinking it over, discussing it with my husband, and sorting out daycare for the kids, I was actually pretty stoked about the possibility of returning early. I say possibility because both my Principal and Superintendent still had to approve this request. Well, yesterday it became official – I’m heading back to work November 27th – 6 weeks early!

I think I’m pretty excited?!?

I am definitely ready to go back to work; to have adult conversations and get back into the routine I have followed for the last 34 years. I love my job and the people I work with, and have actually really missed both while being off.

I will definitely miss spending time with my kids, Tanner is learning new things almost daily, and Ryan is growing into such a sweet little girl. I am one lucky momma!

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I’m also going to miss going to the gym everyday. While on maternity leave I have had the luxury of going to the gym in the mornings which has made dinner time and evening routines a lot less hectic! I have, however, on occasion, taken the kids to the gym for a 5:45pm class, and it has worked out okay, so that’s always an option, and will hopefully become a once-a-week routine when I get my own BodyAttack class in the near future!

I will also miss having time to prepare delicious and healthy meals. Although I will not have as much time, I think being back in my old routine will help me use the time I do have more efficiently. Shopping will have to be done on the weekends, meals will have to be planned, and the time I have between the end of my workday and when I need to pick up the kids will have to be used well!

So with that being said, I have a ton of stuff to do in the next three weeks – while actually, the next two weeks since Hubby and I are going on vacation from the 15th to the 22nd. My original plan was to send both kids to daycare part-time in December and paint our bedroom, paint the upstairs bathrooms, get rid of all the junk, sort through the kids clothes, move the kids play area to the basement and get someone to come in and help us decide how to (better) finish our basement so it can be used as a play area and family room! I’m pretty sure that is not all going to get done in the next few weeks!!!

Time to prioritize! I’m off to go through the kids clothes and get rid of some junk!

Motivational Monday – Preparation!

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I find that planning is the key to reaching my goals of eating clean and exercising regularly.

Step 1: Plan a weekly menu. Here’s my plan for the week.

  • Monday – Grilled Chicken, Asparagus and Peppers
  • Tuesday – Eat Clean Spinach and Turkey Sausage Pizza
  • Wednesday – Pork Kabobs with Cucumber and Tomato Salad
  • Thursday – Greek Feta Burgers and Summer Pasta Salad
  • Friday – Pesto Pasta with Seasonal Veggies
  • Saturday – Chicken Tacos with Guacamole and Tostitos

Step 2: Make a grocery list and go shopping. Make sure you have everything you need to make all your meals for the week. Make sure you pick up fruits and veggies for healthy snacks. Avoid picking up unhealthy foods and snacks – if they aren’t in the house, you won’t be tempted to eat them!

Step 3: Plan your workouts for the week. Here’s my exercise plan for the week. I also think its important to actually schedule them into your day.

  • Monday – rest day 🙂
  • Tuesday – BodyAttack – 8:30 – 9:30 am
  • Wednesday – 5K run – after Tanner’s doctors appt – around 10:30am
  • Thursday – CXWorx and BodyAttack 5:15 – 6:45 pm
  • Friday – Walking…lots of walking, we are going to the zoo!
  • Saturday – Long Run – either 14k or 10k – 8 – 10 am
  • Sunday – BodyAttack – 8:15 – 9:15 am

Do you plan your menus and workouts?

How do you stay on track with healthy eating and exercise?