Diary of A Fit Woman: The Myths of Meal Prep
Photo: Dominique Scott
When the phrase “meal prep” comes to mind, the vision of bland baked chicken, brown rice, and tree-like stalks of broccoli soon follow. You’ll prepare and eat it for all of your meals until eternity or maybe when a weight loss goal is reached—whichever comes first.
Maybe I’m being a little dramatic, but the thought of prepared meals as being boring is a real thing. Initially, meal prepping seemed like something only bodybuilders would do. I viewed the practice as a means to an end that reduced food to simply fuel for your body. Meal prepping equaled eating to live instead of for pleasure, and that didn’t seem like much fun.
In reality, while bodybuilders do meal prep primarily, and while food is fuel for your body, it CAN be fun!
Once we get past the stigmas of eating half a dozen eggs in one sitting, the truth of the meal prepping evolution and its effectiveness comes to light. Here’s how to rethink your views on meal prepping.
What Meal Prepping Is
Meal prepping is literally the action of prepping your meals for a couple days or a week ahead of time. It’s done to make sure there’s no slip ups with nutrition, and is meant to help you stay on track with healthy, consistent dietary habits.
You don’t have to eat baked chicken and brown rice for the rest your life. As long as you’re creating great tasting meals that are nutritious and healthy, you can make whatever you like. Even bodybuilders get creative over time and have incorporated foods like quinoa and kale to switch things up.
Why You Should Meal Prep
If you’re looking to drop pounds, fuel your body with healthy foods that it can actually use, and feel better overall, you should definitely incorporate meal prepping into your weekly routine. Why? Because it actually works. If your meals for the week are ready to go, there’s no impromptu stops at a fast food restaurant, and no overeating because everything is portioned out ahead of time. It’s the ultimate way to keep yourself accountable about what’s going into your body. Plus, you’re cooking the meals, so you know exactly what’s in them.
What to Prepare
Some of my favorite things to meal prep are portable omelettes. This simple recipe is low maintenance and provides a quick, healthy breakfast. Simply mix chopped veggies with pre-scrambled eggs, place them in an oven and bake for about 20 mins per 2 egg tins at 375 degrees.
For lunch, I make jasmine rice and have it with baked chicken and veggies. Mixed with a little bit of teriyaki sauce, it’s a quick Chinese food fix for me.
For dinner I make salmon (either pan cooked or baked), oven roasted green beans and baked sweet potatoes with cinnamon (no sugar).
All of these options are flavorful and satisfying.Using the right seasonings while skipping butter, sugar and added calories from cheese or overdoing it with sauces, can help make any meal healthier. The only thing preventing your favorite healthy meal from being meal prep worthy is whether you decide to meal prep it or not.
Reneé DuBose is a Chicago media professional who was bitten by the health and fitness bug a few years ago. On her journey to get and stay fit, she started a health and wellness blog to share her tips with friends, family and anyone needing help. Visit The Fit Print and keep up with her on Instagram @theFitPrint.