by Meghan Lee
This is Part 3 of the first Make It Happen series focused on time management on the journey towards achieving your best health.
Meal Preparation Time Savers
This is where many people fall short with time but there are ways to help make it a little easier for yourself.
- Prepare your meals for the week. Make foods that are interchangeable breakfast/lunch/dinner.
- Cook dinner that you can eat for lunch the next day.
- There are a few super reputable ingredient delivery services out there. Home Chef, SunBasket, Hello Fresh, Blue Apron, you choose the meals that sound good to you. They send you the ingredients in a refrigerated box and voila, a fresh, diet-restriction specific, home-cooked meal that only takes about 30 minutes +/- to put together. It’s super convenient if you like to cook, but don’t have time or energy to do all the legwork. It’s also a great learning tool if you don’t know what to cook or what you like. It’s a perfect way to try new things.
- Not all diets are created equal. Some require more work than others. You’ve got to find what works for you, in order to be able to sustain it. Think long term.
Being able to maintain your new better eating habits is the backbone to your success. So when choosing the way to go, you want to weigh the pros and cons and realistically fit it into your schedule.
If you have a crazy schedule, you won't immediately be able to make fresh zucchini pasta or yogurt from scratch.
Set yourself up for success.
What’s right for you?
Sometimes mothers tell me it’s hard to change their eating habits because of their kid's eating habits. This boggles my mind. You are the one buying this food.
If you want support in changing your lifestyle, it is to your benefit (and theirs!) to get your whole family on board with a healthier eating plan. There are plenty of new healthier options in your supermarket. Start reading labels, how much sugar, how much salt, what are the ingredients, can I pronounce the names when I say it out loud??
- Find or start a fit parent group, where you can take turns watching each other's kids allowing you both to get in some alone time and a good focused workout.
- Find a gym that also has childcare available.
- Involve your kids in your fit lifestyle. Find ways to get them interested in working out with you! Get a running stroller, take bike rides, play sports, get them their own mats/“equipment”
If you make it a learning experience for your whole family, your kids are more likely to continue these fitness/eating habits into adulthood.
That goes for your partner, as well. If you live with someone else, it’s smart to involve them in your new direction.
- Have a chat with them. See if they would be interested in joining or at least supporting your efforts. Make a plan. Make a pact.
- Find a workout partner that can meet the same times you can. It’s super motivating and kind of obligating when someone is meeting you for a run or at the gym.
- This also goes for getting a certified personal trainer or signing up for classes that you will get charged for if you don’t show up. When you have invested your hard earned money into your goal, you are much more likely to make time for it, like you would a doctors appointment or a hair appointment.
Don’t fret, sometimes in life we must walk the path to greatness alone. Especially if you don’t have support - look at the bright side. You won’t have anyone slowing you down. Sometimes, counting on someone else not to cheat your eating pact or coordinating workouts can be a difficult task and a disappointing venture. Having a workout bud is awesome when they are as committed as you are. But it’s super unmotivating when they are not.
You don’t want to fall into someone else’s habits of putting it off, so chin up! It’s not any harder going it alone. You are still responsible for you no matter what.
Don’t let having to do things on your own stop you from achieving your greatness!
You can always join a forum or a group online. Or just post about your plans and journey on social media. This is also a great way to hold yourself accountable.
Just do the best you can. That’s all you can ask for. Creating a schedule and sticking to it is a little like trying to save money. It can get tedious, you feel the sacrifice, and it may not feel worth it at the moment. But then, you’re 30 days into creating those new habits in your schedule, you're getting the hang of it, you’re feeling the effects of this new schedule from the exercise. You have more energy, you're feeling stronger. And Boom, that’s like saving $500 more in the bank.
Like I said in Body Project. If you find ways to enjoy the process, you will!
Keep your mission statement handy. Bring it with you wherever you go. When life gets tough - get tougher. Pull out that mission of yours and re-inspire yourself to finish your day strong. It can be done.
A good friend of mine, ChiChi, from Brooklyn, who passed a few years ago, would give a mantra to students in his yoga class that has stayed with me and motivates me every day.
If you can, you must.
You know when you're just making excuses. And when you feel like giving up- on the schedule, on the workout, on the diet, on your dreams, whatever it is, you've got to make that conscious decision to stay committed, to see it through. You will never know unless you see things through!
Know that it is all those little, sometimes mundane, sometimes monotonous, things, that you don’t feel like doing, in between now and greatness, are the building blocks to your greatness.
If this is what you want, stop waiting for tomorrow. Life is short. Don’t waste your time wishing you had time. MAKE IT HAPPEN.
MEGHAN LEE is a Fitness Professional, that worked in NYC for over a decade, and has recently transplanted here to Wilmington. She is NASM certified in Personal training, Corrective Exercise, Behavior Change, and Sports Performance training. She is also a certified Yoga instructor, teaching a range of classes from Bootcamp/Hiit and Circuit training to Barre Method/Fusion classes and a range of yoga styles. Throughout her fitness career, since 2006, she has worked for popular companies in Manhattan with different approaches to fitness, not to exclude her own private client base in the NYC metro area.
From creating and running programming and workshops, to creating and advising wellness and exercise prescriptions, she has had the privilege of working with all ages and body types, gaining crucial hands-on experience and knowledge in all sorts of areas which are a touch on in this blog. Programs, challenges, exercises, injuries, flexibility, pain, health limitations, you name it. She is excited to have the opportunity to share with you all the tips and info she has accumulated over the years and Anahata are grateful to have her be a part of our blogs!