Bulletproof your health this weekend.
You don’t fail your diet, because you lack willpower. You fail — because you lack a plan.
You know, why I succeed in sticking with any diet, no matter where in the world I am, how busy I get, eating between gigs, meetings, workout and coaching sessions with my clients? Traveling?
Because I always have a plan for any situation.
I have a template for a meal, a sample meal idea, a sample day of meals, that is flexible and can be done pretty much anywhere, where food is available. (If there are no options — I fast). No matter what you choose to eat — you can make it happen, when you have a clear plan in your head.
NO PLAN — IS A PLAN TO FAIL.
I work with a lot of clients who often say to me,
“But Angela, I have to commute, and I don’t have time to cook a proper breakfast. Or eat it. All I can do is grab something on my way”
“But Angela, I have a whole family to take care of before heading to work. I don’t have much time for a special breakfast prep for myself! I have ZERO time already!”
“But Angela, I’m so tired at night, when I get home. There is no way I’m cooking anything then. I don’t have time or energy for that. I have energy to eat and get ready for the next day.”
“But Angela, I don’t know how to cook, or shop, or choose vegetables and deal with fresh meat and fish. I don’t even know, how to boil a couple of eggs!”
I hear that almost every single time, some version of that anyway, when we start working together. And gradually we move from excuses to a plan, to simple actions, that make our goals our reality.
And our success starts here. With a meal plan, a food plan, a healthy eating plan, or a clean eating plan, or a diet plan — whatever you wanna call it, whatever works for you and makes you feel charged and ready for some action! Food action!
How many meals do you plan to have? When? Where?
Take out a piece of paper — you aren’t gonna remember all of this — write it down, type it in an Excel spreadsheet, draft it in a note app on your mobile phone.
It can be anything.
Do you do intermittent fasting for breakfast? Lunches out? Dinners out? Breakfast while commuting? Have to travel for work? For a conference? Vacation?
What is it this week? What does your week of food look like this upcoming week?
It’s very unpredictable?
Get ready more grab-and-go, on-the-go kind of meal/snack options.
What are you having for breakfast every day this week?
Two, of my all time favorite breakfasts, that are super easy to make, are:
- Eggs with veggies or/and an avocado. Like an omelet. Or a scramble. Or a frittata.
- A green smoothie.
Both options can be made in advance. You can pre-cook omelets in an oven for a few breakfasts. You can boil eggs and eat them with your avocados, or with your green smoothies.
Don’t know how to cook an omelet? Or to boil eggs?
A green smoothie?
*My favorite mix: greens + green/protein powder + berries + cacao/vanilla
You can prepare smoothies in advance, so that the only thing you have to do is to blend everything, eliminating all the prep and decision making in a very busy morning. You can take your smoothies with you and “eat” it while commuting.
Just put all the ingredients for each individual smoothie in a separate container or a ziplock bag, put them in the freezer (except for the protein/green powder), and blend it all in the morning. Really fast, easy and healthy. Have your to-go smoothie cup ready.
Those are not the only options of course. You can come up with your own ideas. I just love these ones, because they provide a lot of nutrients per calorie, fiber, essential amino and fatty acids, vitamins and minerals — great options health and nutrition wise!
*BONUS: Take your supplements with your breakfast — multivitamin, omega-3s — and you are off to a great start!
Decide on your breakfasts. Write down the ingredients needed for breakfasts for the whole week.
What are you having for lunches and dinners this week?
Where are you having lunches and dinners?
For simplicity I love having a meal template in my head for whatever diet or eating plan I decide to follow.
Here is what I mean by that.
Right now I’m following a low carb/paleo/keto eating plan. And for most of my meals I love to have — and I believe it’s one of the best ways to eat for most people — I love to have a lot of veggies, either as a fresh salad or cooked (steamed, sautéed or roasted), covering ¾ of my plate, or having a whole big bowl of salad, accompanied by some protein-rich food — in my case seafood. And that’s pretty much all my lunches and dinners, no matter where I am, in, out and about, traveling, at a party. You can have a veggie soup, you can have chicken or beef liver, or a steak or more eggs. Just make sure, that the bulk of your food is occupied by vegetables. 200–300 g of protein is more than plenty for most people, size of your palm with fingers.
Going for more carbs? Have some sweet potato, quinoa, beans — whatever your diet plan allows. One handful is plenty.
Avoid vegetable oils and added sugars (even natural ones like honey) in any of your meals as much as possible, if you are interested in living a healthy and long life.
Dessert? Have a piece of fresh fruit or frozen berries. Even though I’d prefer you to have fruit separately for a good digestion and preferably earlier in the day and/or after your workout. Have a handful of nuts or a piece of cheese, maybe? Dark chocolate? (There are sugar free versions by the way).
Figure it out — what you eat, when, where. Create and memorize your own meal template.
Make a list of ingredients needed to cook foods you plan to eat for lunch and dinner this week.
Do you snack? Are some of your meals out? Do you often find yourself in a situation, when you have no energy and/or time to cook?
I don’t recommend snacking, but if you do — I’d rather you snack on something good for you and healthy. Some nuts? A can of sardines wrapped in a lettuce leaf with some dressing? Hard boiled eggs? Veggie sticks and guacamole? A piece of cheese? Beef or fish jerky? Nut butters? A banana?
Plan it. Buy it. Buy some more for emergencies and unpredictable situations, that can come up. Prepare and pack single portions ready to grab and go.
Have a few emergency meals ready-to-go.
A can of tuna and a salad mix in a bag, where you can add your own dressing? Hard boiled eggs and an avocado?
There are millions of options!
As you can see, even in my emergency meals, meals out etc., I always try to follow my meal template to the best of my ability — you’ll discover it’s very easy to eat healthy, once you have a plan, a template in your head. You can even have a healthy meal in a supermarket, or on a park bench (I did it quite a few times).
Meals out? Business lunches? Dinners? Airplanes? Hotels?
Remember, that meal template we talked about?
Choose your veggies as your main, add some protein to that. Eat it.
It can be done anywhere!
Ready to shop? Not so fast! Make a grocery list first!
Create a shopping list for groceries for meals you plan to cook, for snacks.
Get all the information from the meals we planned before. Put foods into categories, combine the same foods and add up the amounts. Put together a list of all the ingredients you need for your food.
Great time savers:
- Vegetable mixes, fresh and frozen — roast them, steam them, sauté them in bulk for as many meals as needed. No need to wash, cut and chop.
- Salad greens mixes — great for smoothies, for salads, ready to go.
- Canned seafood, canned meats, canned veggies — just make sure to check the ingredient list for added sugars, vegetable oils and artificial additives and preservatives. There are a lot of great products out there! You can also order a lot of them online. Just like veggie and salad mixes.
- Spices, dressings mixes — they will make anything taste delicious. Especially great news for someone, who likes things simple and fast but still tasty, for someone like myself.
- Jerky, veggie sticks, single serving nut butters, nut mixes, all kinds of savory dips and almond cheeses, and whole grain crackers and coconut wrappers, plant based unsweetened yogurts, boiled eggs, fresh fruit — great things to have in your fridge for small simple meals/snacks/on-the-go food.
Do you know how to super-charge your plate with nutrition, prevent deficiencies as much as possible and fortify your health?
Get as much variety in EVERYTHING you eat as possible!
Different veggie and salad mixes, seasonal and local, throwing in some exotic options too, different seafood and meats, organ meats, different animals, different farms, different nuts — mix it up! The more variety — the more nutrients! Our ancestors used to eat hundreds of species! We eat so few!
Lots of cravings are caused by nutrient deficiencies, not calories, deficiencies, that are often caused by the lack of variety in your diet!
Prevent it with smart shopping!
Ready to shop?
Shop. Pick up extra things.
My advice — don’t buy any food, that is not on your list of healthy food. Make it extra hard to get those not-so-good-for-you options. Save desserts and treats for special occasions and special places — restaurants, family dinners, parties and celebrations, friends get-togethers — make your home a GREEN food zone, where only health lives. Surround yourself with healthy food — and you will eat it.
Ready to cook?
Cook and meal prep.
Now it’s time to cook!
Figure out, what meals you need to pre-cook and store in advance, which meals you can cook on the spot (The fresher the better, since more nutrients are preserved).
Some foods you might prepare for a super-fast cooking, like your green smoothie ingredients ready-to-blend, or cut your fish and meats (or buy them cut), or wash your veggies.
Pre-cook and prepare in bulk and pack in single serving containers your veggies and proteins. I love to roast or sautee, or steam my veggies, really easy. And if you need some ideas — YouTube!
Prepare your grab-and-go meals and snacks, in some sort of system, so you know how to eat them, so they are ready-to-eat, so you don’t have to do more thinking or preparing on the spot, when you don’t have time and/or energy for good decision making and cooking.
And that’s about it.
READY TO EAT?!
This works for ANY diet. This works for ANYONE. There is ALWAYS a way. When you know your priorities. When you have a plan.
What’s your excuse now?…
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