How to Create a Meal Prep Schedule That Fits Your Busy Work Schedule
The lives of busy professionals are stressful enough without having to add meal prepping into the mix.
Whether you're just getting started with meal prepping and need help figuring out where to begin or are looking for ways to refine your existing meal prep schedule, it can be difficult trying to balance a full-time job between healthy eating goals.
The good news? It's absolutely doable to interlace regular monthly meal prep time into your already jam-packed schedules – all it takes is finding the right approach that works best for you!
Today, we will explore strategies on how busy professionals can easily create a weekly meal prep plan so they can stay on track with their healthy lifestyle goals...
Let's get into it:
Reasons Meal Prepping is Important
Weekly meal prep started out as a way for athletes and bodybuilders to eat healthily, but it has now become a popular trend for busy professionals who want to easily incorporate healthier eating habits into their lifestyles.
This practice helps you save time and money in the long run by stocking up and preparing your food ahead of time which, in turn, allows you to plan ahead, so you can make sure you're eating a balanced and nutritious diet that meets all your dietary goals.
Getting Started With Meal Prepping
Getting started can seem like a little bit of a pain, especially if you're used to grabbing takeout, fast food or anything ready-made for all your meals. However, the key to successful meal prepping is having a plan and sticking with it.
Here are some tips on how you can create an effective weekly meal prep plan that fits your schedule:
- Start small – Pick one or two days a week where you can devote 1-2 hours of meal prep time. This will give you enough time to shop, plan and prepare your meals without it becoming too overwhelming.
- Focus on one meal at a time – Don't try to tackle all your weekly meals in one go. Pick one day where you can focus on breakfast, one for lunch, and another for dinner. This will help you keep your meal prepping organised and ensure that all your meals are as fresh as possible.
- Create a meal prep schedule – Write out your weekly meal plan ahead of time to get a better understanding of what you need to buy and how much time it will take. This will also help you stay on track with eating healthy and make it easier to stick to your meal prep goals.
- Set goals – Meal prepping isn't only about convenience but also about health. So set realistic and achievable goals for yourself that include eating nutritious, balanced meals as well as maintaining an overall healthy lifestyle.
Menu Planning and Shopping
Hands up, who loves doing the food shop? No... ? Neither do we, to be honest, however, it's a necessary evil for any meal prepper.
When the trade-off is delicious meals ready to eat for the next three days or the next week, it makes it harder to dismiss, don't you think?
Before heading to the store, take the time to plan out what ingredients you need for each meal.
This will save you time in the store, as well as help you avoid impulse-buying unhealthy snacks.
Most supermarkets have online ordering services these days, so use that to your advantage!
This will also help reduce the amount of time spent standing around in line or browsing the aisles - especially great if you're short on time.
Dealing with Limited Time & Resources
A busy schedule is not always conducive to a successful meal prep session, but that doesn't mean it's impossible to do.
To make things easier, limit the number of recipes and ingredients you use so that your grocery list isn't too overwhelming.
To save even more time, try investing in a slow cooker (Instant Pot or Crockpot) which can help you prepare meals with minimal effort.
This is especially helpful if the only thing you have time for is to 'dump & dash' and great for healthy, hearty meals when the weather pitches a fit!
Air fryers are great for when you're short on time and don't want to wait for something to cook in the oven.
Not only are they faster, but they also use less oil which makes them a healthier option than deep frying.
Employing Meal Services
If time really is that tight, there is another way of solving the meal-prep problem.
There are now a variety of services that provide ready-made meals delivered straight to your doorstep.
From healthy meal delivery plans to frozen meals, there is something for everyone, and it can be tailored to your specific dietary needs and goals.
These services make it easy to eat healthily without the hassle of having to plan, shop or cook.
They are an excellent option for busy professionals who just don't have the time to meal prep.
Meal prepping is an effective way of helping you stay on track with your nutrition and health goals, even when it feels like there aren't enough hours in the day.
Meal prepping may seem like an intimidating process, but with some effort and planning, it can easily become part of your weekly routine.
Taking the time to plan out meals ahead of time will save you both money and time in the long run, and make sure that you are eating wholesome and nutritious food.
It is a big step towards leading a healthier lifestyle in the long run - just think about the peace of mind associated with knowing what you'll eat on any given day, up to several days in advance!
Start mapping out your meal plan today, shop smarter, cut down on takeout, make use of shortcuts when necessary and freeze portions when needed - these small changes will make a world of difference.
So, what do you say? Are you ready to begin taking control of your diet through meal prepping?
Anything you'd like to add?
Let us know in the comments!