Meal Prep 101

The number one reason you’re probably not hitting your daily macro prescriptions is because you haven’t properly planned for it.

Think about it, what’s easier:

  • Going through your day trying to order foods that could fit your macros and then rummaging through your pantry at the end of the week to get those last few macros in without going overboard on the other macros
  • Grabbing your pre-measured meals from your fridge and eating it.

It takes a little more work on the front end (1-2 hours set aside to cook your meals in advance) but it makes the rest of your week so much easier.

Instead of resorting to fast food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner because it’s the quickest and easiest thing at the moment your new path of least resistance becomes grabbing your meal from your fridge.

Not to mention you save money in the process as the average cost of meal prep can be $3-$8 per meal where eating out can be $10-$20 per meal.

By taking the extra bit of time in your week to actually cook your food in advance you solve the problem most people have been trying for years to solve

How to eat healthy AND hit their macros without stressing out or breaking the bank.

By meal prepping you know where a majority of your calories for the day are coming from and can fill in the gaps with things you enjoy like donuts or post workout protein shakes.

“But Jumha I don’t have time to meal prep”

I hear that one a lot, and here is what I always say.

We all have the same 24 hours in the day. Right now there is somebody busier than you that is working out and meal prepping regularly.

I’ve had a client that worked 2 jobs, was a mother of 3, and led several community projects that still found time to meal prep regularly each week for her and her children.

The reality is there is always time, it’s just a matter of prioritizing it.

If you actually want to change for the better, you will find a way. If this is something you feel like you might need help with click here to apply for a FREE strategy call so I can help you out.

Now to get to the meal prepping!

Days Of Prep

The first thing you have to do before we actually prep anything is decide how often you actually want to prep.

This will vary greatly depending on your schedule, how much you like to cook, and how much you can tolerate cold food.

Some people are crunched for time, hate cooking, or just ok with eating food that’s been in the fridge for 5-6 days. If that’s the case you can probably set aside a couple hours on Sunday and prep all your meals for the week in one go.

Maybe you like to cook and want to have meal variety throughout the week, if that’s the case you can set aside a couple hours every 2-3 days so that you can prep to your liking.

The most common prep days I have had clients do are either just Sunday prep or Sunday and Wednesday prep. 

This is pretty simple to decide but the important thing here is to be honest with yourself and your preferences and planning around that!

 

Plan What To Shop For

Now before we actually go shopping, it’s important that we plan out what we will be shopping for.

The reason being is that anytime you don’t have a plan you’re more likely to fail.

In this instance, failure is making it to the grocery and buying frozen pizzas, poptarts, and 6 pints of Ben and Jerry’s.

To avoid this happening to you, my typical suggestion is utilization of the rule of 3’s.

The rule of 3’s refers to choosing:

  • 3 Proteins
  • 3 Carbs
  • 3 Healthy Fats
  • 3 Veggies

Here’s a handy little chart for you that you can reference that you can pick and choose your favorites from.

 

An important part of not making meal prep boring is including spices.

If you don’t already have a fully stocked spice cabinet, don’t worry! Every time you go shopping buy 1 or 2 spices that you want to try out in your prep so that you slowly build up your collection.

After a few weeks you’ll be the spice master of your neighborhood!

Here’s a list of some great spices you can use to help everything taste a little better.

 

What about the sauce?!

Nothing wrong with using sauce to give your food some flavor, just remember that usually sauces have calories. As long as you are taking into account those added calories and they fit your plan then you’re all good!

 

Cooking Your Food

So now that we bought our food it’s time to start cooking!

We’re going to expand on the rule of 3’s that we talked about earlier by batch cooking everything!

You will cook 3 proteins, 3 carbs, 3 veggies, and 3 healthy fats in large individual batches and store them separately.

Once that is complete, you can mix and match your meals to have 1 protein, 1 veggies, 1 carb, and 1 fat for each meal. 

This way, your meals have variety and you can change it up for each day of the week in the event that you don’t want to have the same exact foods for every meal.

For Example:

Let’s say you chose these and cooked them as your individual batches:

Protein: Chicken Breast, Ground Beef, Wild Caught Salmon

Carbs: White Rice, Quinoa, Sweet Potatoes

Fats: Avocado, Cashews, Olives

Veggies: Asparagus, Bell Pepper, Zucchini 

You can now mix and match those to have different meals throughout the week!

Meal 1: Chicken breast, sweet potatoes, cashews and asparagus
Meal 2: Salmon, Sweet potatoes, cashews and bell pepper
Meal 3: Ground beef, quinoa, avocado, and asparagus
Etc.

This way you can keep up some variety in your meals and still hit your target macros along the way!

Recipes

Not sure how to season anything or what choice to make? 

I got you!

Here’s a nifty little info-graphic I made that details what seasoning to use, general cooking guidelines, and – best of all – it’s color coded!

(This is just one of all the cool helpful infographics we post on Instagram – Follow us!)

The same idea applies here! Mix and match one item from each column to create your ideal meal.

 

What should my portions look like?

You know what to cook, now you just need to figure out how to do it.

The answer to this depends entirely on your current daily calorie intake, your macro prescription, and the number of meals you’re having.

If you’re not sure what any of those look like for you – or if you just wanna double check you’re on the right track – you can download my FREE ebook The Nutrition Manual HERE! It’s a simple breakdown of what your calories, macros, micros, and meal frequency should look like!

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