You may have heard that meal prep works wonders for those who do it correctly and there are a few key reasons as to why it has been so effective for them. Firstly, it stops you from eating bad/junk foods because since you already have delicious wholefoods prepared for the day it will be less likely that you’ll fall off and give into those cravings. Secondly, it helps get you into a routine so that eating healthy foods and going to the gym becomes a habit. Lastly, it saves you time from always cooking in the kitchen so that you can now spend that time doing other things important in your life.
To help you successfully start meal prepping here are the 5 steps you should follow before you even step foot in a kitchen:
1 – Choose A Day Or Two To Cook
After a long day, the last thing you want to do is to spend the rest of your evening preparing food for the next day right ? because if you do this everyday it’ll literally feel like you spend your entire life in the kitchen cooking chicken and broccoli…
So for most meal preppers the best day to cook is a Sunday because it’s close enough to the start of the week to prevent food from going bad and far enough to the end of the week so that your weekend plans aren’t affected. However, depending on how many days worth of meals you’re making, cooking it all on one day will take you a long time and the quality of your food won’t be as high near the end of the week. So if you feel splitting up the meal prep into two days suits you better than that’ll work too, not to mention it’ll definitely preserve the quality of your food a lot more.
2 – Know Your Macros And Calories
Without knowing how much you’re exactly supposed to be eating everyday you won’t lose weight or gain muscle and meal prep will be a disaster. By finding out your macros for the week you can easily plan how many meals you eat each day and what those meals are made of. For example if you’re trying to gain weight it’s probably better to use chicken thighs for your meals instead of chicken breasts.
3 – Use Staple Wholefoods
When meal prepping it’s best to use healthy wholefoods that is easy too cook and store well. This is because the more fancy you decide to make the meals, the longer you’ll be in the kitchen and the worse it’ll taste after it’s been sitting inside a container for a few days. If you really want to eat something other than grilled chicken breast and quinoa then save the decadence for a fresh meal instead.
Here are a few examples of the foods you should be using:
Fats – Coconut oil, nuts, seeds, nut butters, avocados and full fat dairy products.
Carbs – Oatmeal, rice, quinoa, lentils, chick peas, beans, potatoes, fruits, bread, tortilla and vegetables.
Protein – Chicken breast, pork tenderloin, salmon, tuna, whole eggs, flank steak, gammon, lean ground meats and whey protein.
4 – Pick The Meals
Once you’ve bought all the wholefoods it’s time to decide how many meals you’re going to prepare and which one to prepare first. This will save you a lot of time so that you’re not cooking each meal one by one. This doesn’t mean you have to cook the same recipe for all three meals, but you can if you choose to do so. Remember the more recipes you choose to cook the longer you’ll be in the kitchen.
5 – Use Proper Containers And Insulated Meal Bags
After you prepare all your meals you MUST USE proper containers that is “BPA Free” and microwaveable. If possible make sure the containers are also clear and the same size so that you can easily stack them and see what’s inside.
Using proper containers is just the first part, without a insulated meal bag or cooler you’ll have an extremely hard time carrying your numerous containers around. The bags controlled temperature can also help protect your food from going off and prevent meals from spilling or being damaged during daily commute.
These purchases might seem unnecessary at first, but how you choose to store your meals can either make or break your meal prepping efforts.
Hopefully this article has given you a good idea on how to get started with meal prepping so that achieving your goals become just a little easier. Also if you have anymore questions about meal prep then please feel free to leave a comment about it below.