As a full time student I need meals that are quick a convenient to pack. There are a few things I have learned in the past year that have made my meal planning and meal prep a lot easier. First lets focus on the meal planning.
Personally I don’t like eating the same meal five days in a row. I make sure to plan enough variety so I don’t get sick of everything! The first step to meal planning is to make a grocery list. Since I am a student I try to plan my meals around what we already have in the house (I’m on a TIGHT budget). A quick inventory allows we to make a short, budget friendly list. Once you know what you have on hand you can start planning your meals. I usually sit down with my favourite recipes and pick from those (I use the tone it up nutrition plan most of the time, but I also use google to find new blogs with healthy recipes). If I feel like trying something new I turn to google. Once I have found the recipes I want I put it into a table on Microsoft Word:
As you can see I don’t prep for dinner since It changes based on who is eating- if I prep for just me, others go hungry!!
Now my tips for quick and effective food prep! When you’re prepping food time management is a must. If something has to marinade, get it started while you’re cooking something else. For example the lemon garlic chicken is marinated for 30 minutes. While it is doing so I usually start cooking my protein pancakes. I like to make one recipe that will go a long way- soups are great for this. I can use half of it to feed me for a week (If I don’t get sick of it) and throw half of it in the freezer for next time. I like to freeze soup in mason jars so It is pre portioned. When making chicken, I try to make enough to last two weeks (If I stuck to this food plan for two weeks I would only need 4 pieces) and I put them in the freezer as well. It is worth looking into a vacuum sealer for your food. If you can freeze the whole meal (chicken and steamed veggies freezes great!) then you can prep for the month! When it comes time to pack your lunch, just grab the vacuum pack out of the freezer and throw it in your bag with a container. At meal time cut the bag open and dump everything into a microwavable container and heat! SO EASY! I don’t prep food for weekends if I’m home, but I still plan my meals so It is easier to stick to a health diet.
I hope my tips helped make your meal prep easier. Share your meal prep tips in the comments below!!
I’ll be posting Wednesday Wedding Planning posts for those of you who are planning a wedding! Stay tuned…
It seems fitting that I set health and fitness goals in January. Everyone does it, so why not me?! I have so many reasons for rededicating myself to my health and fitness. Where to start? I guess I will start by sharing my story with you.
You could say my health and fitness ‘story’ started about 3 and a half years ago. It was July and I was on summer vacation, enjoying the beach in my bikini and feeling OK with myself. It is going to sound so vain, but my mom had taken a bunch of pictures of us playing on the beach and when I looked at them I was shocked. My body had changed so much, and not in the ways I wanted it to. I had finished high school and was in that ‘in between’ phase where I didn’t know what to do with my life. I was lost. I worked everyday at the local hockey rink in the kitchen. I ate the deep fried foods and drank the sugary drinks. I felt terrible. I was sick. I had five kidney infections in 4 months, caught HINI, plus another few rounds of the flu. All the antibiotics and antivirals made me sick on top of the viruses and infections I already had. I had chronic upper back pain from a car accident and a trampoline accident. I thought I just had bad luck so I didn’t do anything about it. Finally when I saw those pictures of my changing body I decided to get to work. I looked up free workouts online and found Zuzka Light (www.zuzkalight.com). Back then she was part of Bodyrock TV, but now she’s kicking butt on her own! I tried her workouts and loved them, started running more and started to eat healthy. I also found Tone It Up on YouTube (www.toneitup.com). These people changed my life. I changed the way I ate, trying to focus on eating healthier foods, and cutting out the sugary drinks. I workout out here and there, which was more than ever before. I was ‘naturally thin’ and never had to workout before so this was a huge change for me.
Fast forward to the present. Now I am in my last semester of college. I’ve been following TIU for the past three years and have had the nutrition plan for a year. I have had 2 kidney infections throughout my 3 year program (that is amazing for me!) and the flu once. The way I’m eating has boosted my immune system and made my body stronger. Now I know there is so much more to my body than what I see in a picture on the beach. As much as those pictures still hurt me a bit (I was at my lowest of lows) I know that if It wasn’t for them I wouldn’t have made those changes. I would never have found the TIU community or my trainers Karena and Katrina. I know they probably won’t ever see this, but I owe my health and wellness to them. Yes I have done the hard work, but they have taught me everything I know about eating well and working out. They have ignited this passion for health that I never had before. I thank them from the bottom of my heart for creating TIU.
Goal setting can seem like a daunting task. Sometimes you have so many goals that you don’t know where to start. I have been setting goals for myself for the last few years. There is nothing like the feeling of crossing a goal off of your list. It is rewarding and empowering. When I was younger I found it hard to accomplish my goals because I didn’t know how to set realistic ones. I’m going to share a few of the tips I have learned along the way.
First and foremost you have to know what your goals are. Setting specific goals will make them more achievable. One of my friends told me that “you have to quantify your goals in order to make them more attainable”. For example if you say ” I want to eat more vegetables” this is a very general term leaving room for failure. Instead try to set goals like “I want to eat five servings of vegetables per day”. I also like to set time limits for my goals to give myself a little extra push. I personally set goals once a month and focus on those goals for the entire month. If I’m hoping to create new habits, a month is plenty of time to get in the swing of things. That way by the 1st of the following month I am used to my new routine and can add more to it!!
Secondly I highly recommend writing your goals somewhere that you will see it everyday. You can write them out on a piece of paper and post it on your bulletin board or write them up on a dry erase board. Seeing your everyday will remind you to keep working towards them! Some people like to create vision boards using pictures and clippings from magazines. I am not the crafty type, but do whatever inspires you!
Another tip is to prioritize your goals. Now that you are going to be writing out your goals, try writing them out in the order of importance. Getting a job will be higher on my priority list than cleaning my car inside and out.
I hope some of these tips helped! Enjoy and good luck with your goals.
It has been a while.. a lot has changed in the past few months, more has changed in the past year. Even more changes to come this year. I am so excited just thinking about what this year has to offer.
Last year was full of ups and downs. I have learned so much about who I am. I tested myself, pushed my limits and grew more than I realized was possible. I am much stronger stepping into the new year, physically and mentally.
Goals for this year:
- Love your body challenge with tone it up which will help me get fit, healthy and love my body =)
- Go skiing a few times before the snow melts
- Visit my far away family more =) I love them so much!!
- Get hired at the hospital where I am doing my practicum
- Graduate from college (I’ll be free for the first time in three years… I can’t wait to start living my life to the fullest!) and successfully complete my registry exam
- Start putting money away for my own house!! (=D!!)
Those are just a few of my goals for the year… hopefully I will be able to narrow it down and focus on a few goals per month. This year brings so many changes and so many exciting things! I’m giddy just thinking about it I love this year already!!
My Sunday morning… Packing for our move next weekend :( not excited to leave my home, I’ve been here for 5 years. So many good things have happened in this house. I know amazing things will happen in the new family home, but it’s always hard to say goodbye to your home. On a happier note I had a chai tea with some Holly Nog (almond milk egg nog) in my Dexter cup!! It was yummy. I also went grocery shopping: coconut milk chocolate and original, rice crackers, Greek yogurt (honey flavored), ground turkey, shrimp, grapefruit, tofu, fresh mint, raspberries, strawberries, and Brussel sprouts. Total was $45, not too bad for lots of food! I have to prep extra for our move so I don’t have to eat pizza and fast food with everyone else. #tiumeals #tiuplan #tiuteam #groceryhaul #moving #dexter @toneitup @karenakatrina #toneitup
Enjoying a morning of baking!! Baked banana oatmeal and pumpkin pudding from tone it up!! Both are delicious. I can’t believe the oatmeal is one serving! It’s so filling and yummy. I put some toasted almond on top- I have an obsession with toasting almonds lol. I had my fresh balsam candle lit. It smells like Christmas in my house. So exciting!! #tiumeals #tiuplan #tiuteam #karenakatrina @karenakatrina #christmas 🎄❄️
I have been slacking a little in my workouts and haven’t been eating the best food. I wasn’t feeling motivated and I kind of forgot why I workout everyday. It felt like it was becoming less of a priority for me. The past few days I’ve finally been getting back in to my normal self. I’m slowly starting to have that desire to workout again. Sometimes your body and mind just needs a break from everything.
I’ve started to plan my workouts for the next week, and am getting groceries to do my food prep. I’m going to start phase 2 over so I can really see the results. I’m happy with the results I’ve seen from phase 1, so it would be a shame if I didn’t give phase two a chance!!!
I’ll keep you posted. 😉
OOTD: hollister jeggings, volcom tank top, Steve Madden sandal and my coach purse. Yes I am standing on a toilet… It’s the only way I can show you my whole outfit haha. I need a full length mirror. On the right: my craving- a grilled cheese with pepper jack cheese and ketchup. Delicious and I will make it do my macros!! #iifym #iifymouth #iifymgirls #ootd