If I left things to chance, I would rarely exercise or cook meals at home.
One of the most important things you can do for your health is to plan ahead. It really is the key to successful weight loss and more importantly – long-term weight management!
Today I’m going to share some simple tips on how you can get better at scheduling exercise and planning your meals in advance.
We’re all busy juggling a million things, but here’s the bottom line:
“If you want to lose weight and KEEP IT OFF, you MUST cook more meals at home and incorporate regular exercise.”
Not only will you be healthier, you’ll also save time, money and a whole lot of calories in the long run.
You know the saying “When you fail to plan, you plan to fail,” right?
Well that statement is bang on when it comes to leading a healthy lifestyle. It does take effort, but the more you do it, the more efficient you become in time.
Tip#1 - How to Schedule Regular Exercise
First, you need to look at the week ahead and pick the times you will dedicate to exercise because if you don’t plan for it – it won’t happen.
That’s just the way it goes. Some people can fly through life by the seat of their pants, but they’re the exception. The rest of us need a PLAN so we don’t get side tracked by the million other things we need to do.
Sunday is a great planning day. Sit down with your calendar and pick the days and times you are going to dedicate to exercise and mark it in your calendar.
If you have a family calendar, mark it down there too so everyone knows you aren’t available (this is a MUST for all you moms out there). Don’t let others dictate your entire schedule – you need time for yourself too.
Also, avoid planning exercise on days that are already full of activities; it will only make you feel stressed and guilty when these activities take longer than they should (and they always do, right?).
I also recommend choosing a specific day and time throughout the week. “Consistency breeds success” and creating a routine is a simple way to build new habits.
Ask yourself these questions when you’re planning your weekly exercise:
1. What days and times can I dedicate to exercise this week?
2. Can I schedule 20-30 minutes of physical activity at least 3 times this week?
Make it a priority and add it to your calendar with all the other important appointments so you don’t forget.
BONUS TIP: The night before, place your workout clothes somewhere visible and leave your shoes by the door (the less excuses you have, the better).
#2 Plan Meals in Advance
If you find yourself wondering what’s for dinner and it’s 5:00 pm, you’re in trouble. It happens to all of us, believe me I’m not perfect either, but when you leave things to chance you are much more likely to reach for quick and easy processed foods.
Planning meals in advance takes time to get used to it, but it’s way less stressful and a whole lot healthier in the long run!
What are the benefits of planning meals ahead?
1. You Save Time
By dedicating 1-2 days a week to meal planning and prep, you’ll save yourself a ton of time the rest of the week because all your food will be washed, chopped, and ready to go. Plus, when you cook meals at home, you can make double or triple the batch leaving you with lunch and dinner options throughout the week.
2. You Save Money
Before I started planning my meals in advance, I wasted a TON of food (and subsequently money). If you find yourself throwing away spoiled produce or expired food at the end of the week – you need to start going to the grocery store with a plan. Only buy 3-4 days’ worth of food at a time and only buy what you need. Do this for 30 days and you’ll be surprised how much money you save.
3. You Save Calories
When you have healthy, pre-made food at your fingertips, you are less likely to rush out and buy quick, convenient, highly-processed food. You also won’t eat “chips and dip” for dinner because your starving and that’s the easiest thing to grab. Being intentional is key to your success and having food “ready-to-go” means you have one less hurdle to overcome.
Personally, I plan and prepare my food on Sunday afternoons and Wednesday evenings. While it may seem like a lot of extra work, spending a few hours 2 days a week makes eating the other 5 days super quick and easy.
Do you want to see how you can prepare food for the week in as little as an hour?
Check my YouTube video: “Meal Prep: Learn how to prep your meals for the days ahead in as little as 1 hour”
Need a quick and easy meal idea to get you started? No problem.
Check my YouTube video: “Quick and Easy Stir-Fry: How to make a meal in under 10 minutes after your weekly meal prep is complete”
Learning to plan ahead and be prepared is the first habit I teach my clients because it guarantees they maintain their weight loss FOR GOOD.
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I'm Carmen Lisa!
My mission in life is to share my simple philosophy for better health and greater happiness.
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