Did Daylight Savings hit everybody else as hard as it hit me? Phew! It’s so funny that 1 hour can throw things off so much.
I’m going to give you guys a couple of posts this week on preparing for your workweek on both the weekend and during the week. Through this series of posts, I’m going to break down some simple tips and tricks that you can use to make your workday healthier, one step at a time. Some people like to get everything done on the weekend, and some like to spread it out over the week. Other times, the choice is out of your control and you just need to do what you can. The point is that really any amount of preparation or energy you put forward will make you healthier (than if you did nothing) in the long run.
Today’s focus: preparing for your workday on the weekend.
My workday preparation is constantly evolving, but I like to think that I have a decent system down nowadays. If I don’t do a little bit of preparation either on the weekend, the night before, or early on the morning during the week, I look something like this —>
Here a few tips that you can try over the weekend that will make your whole week much easier. If you only have 1 hour, 30 minutes or just 15 minutes, there should be a few tips that you can give a try:
Food Prep – Bulk: I’m going to talk about “bulk” food prep in much more detail in future blog posts, but I’m sure you’ve heard all about the trend of cooking a number of recipes or bulk basics on the weekend that will last you all week. It’s certainly not for everyone. I have weekends where I don’t want to spend 1, 2 or 3+ hours in the kitchen cooking and cleaning up (isn’t that the worst part!?) instead of being outside or with loved ones. The basic idea behind bulk cooking is to set aside a block of time over the weekend to wash, chop, dice and cook up most, if not all, of the food you need for the week.
Food Prep – Mini Version: For those of you who can’t swing a large block of time over the weekends to prep your food – have no fear! There are other options out there for you. Some of my tips depend on personal preferences, so feel free to modify as you see fit. For me, I have to have breakfast foods partially prepared, or my breakfasts will be a mess throughout the week. When I don’t have a lot of time, prepping my breakfasts looks something like this:
- Go grocery shopping with a plan so that I don’t buy a bunch of random foods/ingredients. This doesn’t need to take hours – sometimes I even sit in my car for 5 minutes before running into the grocery store so that I can come up with a plan. I bet that 5 minutes of planning saves me $20 or so in unnecessary groceries.
- Wash and chop fruit to use for smoothies, snacks, or oatmeal throughout the week. This includes slicing 2 lemons so that I have it to toss in water all week long.
- Wash and chop a few raw vegetables of your choice for snacking – I usually slice up cucumber, peppers and some carrots for dipping in hummus all.week.long.
- Put 1 scoop of this Sunwarrior protein powder into each BlenderBottle Classic Loop Top Shaker Bottle, Clear Black, 28 Ounce or into a few Ziplock snack bags to drop in a shaker bottle or glass for after an early AM workout. I don’t eat a ton of animal protein, so Sunwarrior is a great protein supplement for me.
- Over the weekend, I make 1 breakfast recipe that I can eat over and over and over again all week. Sometimes it’s oatmeal, oatmeal bakes, egg muffins or breakfast burritos. Whatever it is – pick something that keeps on giving. For an oatmeal example: 1.5 cups of GF steel cut oats, 4 cups unsweetened almond milk, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 2 tsp cinnamon lasts me and my husband for 1 work week.
- Pack up at least 3 servings of steel cut oats (or whatever breakfast item you choose) in glass tupperware for grab-and-go breakfasts throughout the week. I can really only eat oatmeal 3 out of 5 days a week, so I leave the other days open to have eggs, a smoothie or hard boiled eggs and Ezekiel bread.
- Coffee: I take my coffee pretty seriously these days : ) I blame the Bar Exam. While spending an entire late spring/summer studying for the NJ and PA Bar Examinations, I took to coffee and haven’t really turned back. If anything, I really just like the ritual of having coffee most mornings. As much as I look forward to my 1 cup/day, I’ve had to come up with ways to save time and money if I wanted to maximize my efficiency in the mornings. I make sure I buy my coffee on the weekends, or I buy it through some awesome roasters’ websites. Try these or these online ordering options – they’re the best! I try to spend a few minutes on the weekend cleaning my Contigo bottles, popping a coconut milk creamer in the refrigerator and cleaning up my BonaVita Coffee maker to use for the week.
These are just a few examples of some simple steps you can take over the weekend that will make your week a lot easier. You don’t need to do all of these – or even half of these – to be a littttttle bit healthier during your workweek. Later this week I’ll be bringing you Tips #2 and #3.
How do you prepare for the work week? Do you like preparing food on the weekend?