I know that everyone I coach has a life outside of what we discuss. You may have a goal to get healthy or lose weight, but this goal likely stems from other areas of your life. Friends, family, career and personal interests all have the ability to enhance your life when you’re healthy enough to put the time and energy into them that you want to.
For that reason, I have a few tips and tricks to help you get healthy and still save some precious time that you could be spending elsewhere (rather than in the kitchen).
1. Buy frozen
Buy frozen fruit for smoothies. They go great with the different Shakeology flavors and provide a little extra flavor and nutrition. Buy frozen veggies for quick meals. Stir fries have never been so easy! You can also buy spinach frozen for use in smoothies. Frozen broccoli, zucchini, carrots and cauliflower are all great choices. All you need is a pot of boiling water or a pan with a little oil and you’re set.
2. Portion on Sundays
Baby carrots, cherry tomatoes, celery and cucumbers can all be put into pre-portioned bags. Carry some hummus along with you and you’re set for snacks. Not in the mood for veggies one day? Make sure you have pre-portioned bags of nuts and seeds too! Doing this before the week starts means you have more time to do as you please during the week, without worrying about meeting your goals.
3. Pick your carbs
If you’re following a primarily paleo plan, pick out a few carbs for the week. Sweet potatoes, butternut squash and acorn squash can all be prepared on Sunday to get you through the week. Portion them out as needed.
4. Keep it simple
If you’re looking to kick your nutrition up a notch without adding a lot of work, pick two types of leafy greens to get you through each week. It may be spinach and baby kale one week, and romaine and baby bok choy the next. Try to add one cup of greens to each meal. You can have them in breakfast omelets and lunch salads, and they make a great dinner side sauteed with some garlic and/or onions.
5. Invest in a crockpot
Turn it on when you leave the house and have a meal ready when you come home- it’s that simple. Crockpots are great for stews, roasts and tons of other recipes. They’re useful and they don’t require much work other than cleanup when you’re done.
6. Don’t be afraid of a box
As people become more health conscious we’re inundated with messages that tell us not to eat packaged foods. For the most part, this is a good rule. However, there are a few packaged items that can get you out of a slump when you’re just too busy.
Justin’s almond butter squeeze packs stick to plain rather than flavored options
Rythm Superfoods kale chips
Enjoy Life crunchy flax cereal
Amy’s Kitchen organic low sodium vegetable lentil soup
Sunshine Burger vegan burger patties
Wild Planet wild caught fish in can
You don’t have to make a 5-star meal in order for it to be healthy. Here’s a simple formula to follow: protein, carb, fat, vegetables. You can change this formula up every day. For example, one day you may have salmon with sweet potatoes and a side of asparagus sauteed in coconut oil. Another day you may have ground bison mixed with zucchini squash, shredded carrots, quinoa and avocado. You can add in herbs and seasonings as you like, but don’t feel pressured to follow a recipe full of obscure and expensive ingredients.
Put these tips and tricks to use the next time you’re feeling overwhelmed. Remember that in order to live a healthy lifestyle, the changes you make have to be sustainable. Start now and don’t look back!