I posted a picture of my weekly meal prep on the Modern Martha Facebook and got a great response. Who knew so many people were into food prep?
I joined Planet Fitness in July, and I’ve been so good about going at least three days a week. I feel great, my lung capacity has increased, my legs in particular are looking more toned and I’ve been sleeping soundly (woo!). Now that I’ve nailed exercise, I’m focusing in on my diet.
I eat fairly well, but after eight hours at work and an hour at the gym it can be so tempting to grab something easy for dinner, e.g., blue box or ramen. Prepping my meals for the week helps me stay on track. I’ve been doing this for about a month now, and it is totally worth it. I spend roughly 2-3 hours in the kitchen on Sunday, and then zero the rest of the week. It’s not so much about eliminating time spent in the kitchen, just shifting it around.
The main goals for my prep are:
- Get the most out of my ingredients
- Get the most out of my kitchen
I look for meals that share ingredients because it makes it easier when shopping and chopping. I also try to come up with meals that won’t use the same appliance. For example, I know I have one microwave, four burners and one oven. If I can get one thing going in the oven, a few things stovetop and something in the microwave, I’ve got an amazing thing happening.
At the same time, variety is very important. Who wants to eat broccoli and chicken every single day? You do? Well, I certainly do not. I often cook up a bunch of chicken without seasoning, split it up and then season it with different herbs and spices for each meal.
I also plan for several salad meals. I save all of the leftover chopped up veggies, julienne some carrot, and add any leftover protein. If I don’t have any protein leftover, I’ll use some of the eggs that I’ve hardboiled for the week. Hardboiled eggs are great for breakfast, snacks or to toss on a salad.
I’m prepping for two, so don’t let the number of servings I make throw you off.
Here’s what I made for this week:
- 12 servings hardboiled eggs
- 4 servings Garlic Mushroom Chicken with a side of steamed broccoli and red and green bell pepper slices
- 4 servings top round steak pan fried with onions and red peppers with a side of red and green bell pepper slices and sweet potatoes sautéed with onions and kale.
- 4 servings of sweet potato hash with ground turkey, red onion and kale. To be topped with a poached egg.
- Lots and lots of salad. A mix of green leaf lettuce, red leaf lettuce and kale.
I began chopping my veggies starting with the onion and red pepper. Then, I started the chicken on one large burner and the steak, onion and red pepper on my other large burner. While that was going went back to chopping veggies- mushrooms, sweet potatoes and green peppers, oh my! I finished off the chicken in the oven which opened up a large burner for my sweet potato hash. I used a small burner to brown my ground turkey and the microwave to steam the broccoli. The steak was done in no time, so I used that large burner to hard boil my eggs. Before adding the ground turkey to the hash, I scooped out some sweet potatoes to serve alongside the steak. And then somewhere in the chaos I found time to wash and shred lettuce.
I was exhausted from my afternoon spent in the kitchen, but I still made time to hit the gym before dinner. It was an amazing feeling to come home after working out so hard to find dinner waiting for me.