“Food is life”-Me
Happy almost weekend friendssss!
I have been quite MIA on the blog lately. I’d love to say I was detoxing from tech or vacationing somewhere, but honestly the dog days of summer have gotten to me. The monotonous routine of sweat, work, sweat, repeat has lost its charm. It’s still sitting around 105 degrees daily here in Az, and I for one am craving some fall… especially fall foods.
Which brings me to our topic of conversation today…grocery shopping and food prep!
“What to eat” is the topic I receive the most questions on. Showing up to a workout class, or putting in 30-45 minutes of a workout is by no means easy, but it’s straight forward and manageable. Grocery shopping, cooking, and learning about proper nutrition is a whole other beast. It doesn’t help that social media and the internet promotes a new fad diet every few months. If I never get another question about Keto, I’ll be thrilled.
Nutrition can be overwhelming. On average 80% of your body composition is a direct reflection of what you eat. (the rest being genetics and exercise. remember, you can’t out train a poor diet.) Walking into your local grocery store can feel like a free for all of whatever sounds good at the time. But a few tips and tricks + a little planning, can add up to big gains when it comes to eating. Hint- you don’t HAVE to traditionally meal prep.
Meal prep doesn’t have to be your life
If the word tupperware triggers you, or you feel anxiety thinking about massive amounts of prepped broccoli, don’t worry. You don’t have to prep a week in advance to hit your goals. My trick is have 2-3 easy, quick, and nutritious meal ideas ready to go at all times. A go to I have is I always keep a pound of turkey breast in the freezer. I can quickly defrost it and throw in taco seasoning over frozen veggies and rice in less than 20 minutes. Another favorite is frozen chicken patties (or Beyond Meat for vegetarian options) that cook in less than 5 minutes. I also love Teriyaki seasoned baked tofu packs from Trader Joes. All of these can be thrown over veggies and rice/pasta/chickepeas for a completely balanced meal!
Have a plan (or list) beforehand
The grocery store is a place full of all your healthy, whole foods, but is also a place of…literally every other food. Ever find yourself with some staple items and a whole bunch of random other stuff? You’re not alone. Sporadic shopping can lead to money spent on ingredients that add up to very little together. Chicken breasts rarely pair well with ice-cream and granola bars. (Or maybe they do. I’m not judging your palette.) Stick to a plan and get your key foods in your cart first. If you write out a few meal ideas and the ingredients you’ll need, you can avoid ending up with a cart full of random stuff.
Shop on the perimeter of the grocery store
My angel of a mother taught me this one. Think about it…the perimeter of the store is the produce section, meat and poultry department, dairy, and eggs. Most food items in these departments have single ingredient lists and an expiration date. Stick to mainly these items! The aisles in-between are often processed foods with packaging, marketing gimmicks and a long ingredient list. Not all- for example whole grain pastas and heart healthy olive and avocado oils will be found on middle aisles- but a rule of thumb is primarily fill your cart with the outer edges.
Don’t shop hungry
Ever stopped at the store after a long day and ended up with snacks on snacks? Yeah. Same. Shop for the majority of your items when your eyes aren’t bigger than your stomach.
Stop overthinking it
Your food choices don’t have to be a crippling, waste of money. If you’re stuck, pick a protein source in your head, and build your meal around that. Buy less at first so nothing is wasted, and work up from there.
As always, you don’t have to be on your health journey alone. Reach out to me for recipes, shopping lists, and all things food related!