Tuesday, May 2, 2017

It's been a long time coming...

I've had a few people ask me about putting a blog together with my meal prep tips and recipes, and I finally decided it was time. I'm not really sure where I'm going to go with this, or if I'll keep up with it, or how often I'll post, but for now, it is what it is. My goal right now is to do a once a week post with my meal prep for the week. Y'all keep me accountable, ok?

If you don't know my story, in a nutshell, I'm just a girl who got sick of how things were and decided to go for it. Over the course of 18 months, I lost 150+ pounds, naturally. No surgery. No "magic pill." Just good old fashioned diet, exercise and hard work. There were good days, and there were equally as many bad days. Heck, there still are. I have to work every day at this. It truly is a lifestyle change, as cliche as that sounds. There's nothing special about me. There's nothing I did that any of you can not.

Now, when I say diet, I simply mean what I ate. In it's simplest form-calories in were less than calories out. No special "plan."  And, because I knew was limiting my intake, I had to make those calories count. Cause your girl likes to eat. Keep in mind, there is no "one size fits all" approach to this. What works for me, most certainly may not work for you. So, please keep that in mind as you follow along. I follow a IIFYM style of "dieting." IIFYM=If It Fits Your Macros. Macros=macronutrients; Macronutrients=Proteins, Fats, Carbs. I have a specific number of grams of each that I aim to hit each day based on my age, height, weight and activity level. I have a trainer/coach who has set and adjusts these numbers for me as needed. In addition, I also throw in a bit of carb cycling, so I have higher and lower carb days based on my workouts. Again, this is what works for me.

I've said from the beginning one of the things I attribute to my success has been meal planning/prepping. I know you've heard it- fail to plan, plan to fail. And it's true- when left to our own devices, and hangry, we aren't going to make the best decisions. Having a plan for the week helps me stay on track, even now, 3 years later. 

So, let's kick off this blog with how I go about meal planning/prepping for the week.

1. Write down the days of the week and include any events/activities going on. This will give you a visual of how your week is going to look and anything you might need to plan for/around.

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How I plan my week- I use my planner and write down any events/activities/meetings and plan meals around those. I make a list of things I'd like to eat for dinner for the week and plug them in (late nights=quick meals).

2. Keep it simple. I aim for a lean protein/green vegetable at every meal, and if it's a "higher carb" day, a starchy carb at dinner, or around my workout. Remember that your veggies are a great "volume food." You can eat a lot of them for very little calories. They're also how you get your fiber. Fiber helps to keep you full. You don't need a fancy recipe, but if you're looking for some, Pinterest is a good place to start. Just simply type in "healthy chicken recipes" and viola, you have about a million choices.  Or, follow me on Instagram (@inthekitchenwithsassy) where, in addition to this blog, I post lots of food ideas (and shameless selfies!).

3. Plan your menu! I try to take foods I enjoy and make simple substitutes to make them "healthier" or more "macro friendly." (Mini pepper nachos, anyone?) I also try to give myself a nice variety of different lean meats throughout the week (Chicken, Turkey, Fish) and vegetables. It's easier (and much more enjoyable!) to eat that prepped meal on day 3 and 4 when its fun and something I enjoy. No chicken, broccoli and rice everyday for this girl, but if that's your thing, you do you, boo. 

4. Once your menu is planned, create your grocery list. This will also help you save a few dollars, because you're making a list and shopping for the things on that list. No more picking up random ingredients at the store only for them to die a slow death in the back of the fridge. 

5. Realize it's going to take some time. I spend about 2-3 hours on Sunday morning meal prepping for the week. But, that's the only time I cook during the week. By the time I'm done Sunday, all of my breakfasts, lunches and snacks are prepared, and all of my dinners are at least started, if not, ingredients are prepared and ready to go in the oven/on the grill/in the air fryer. So, while it is time consuming, to me it is so worth it. I get up Sunday mornings, start the coffee pot, and hit it.  Usually, my husband is grading papers at the kitchen table, and it's a nice chance for us to catch up and chat. Or, my niece will Face Time me from NY and ask me a million questions about what I'm making.  By noon, I'm usually done, kitchen cleaned, floors mopped, and I have the rest of the afternoon to do what I want (which usually consists of Booty Camp at Crave!).

I hope this has been helpful for those of you wondering just how to do it. I know it can seem overwhelming at first. My advice would be to start with one meal, whatever meal you struggle with, usually that's breakfast or lunch for most people. Prep your breakfasts or your lunches for a few weeks. Once you have that down, add in a second meal. Then, start to add in snacks. You'll have it down to a science in no time!

Thanks for stopping by! Leave me a comment and let me know what you'd like to see featured here.


  1. Yay! So glad you decided to "just go for it" on a new thing. I can't wait to see how this unfolds!

  2. Congrats my friend! I'm excited to read some of your recipes!

  3. When do you get your grocery shopping in? We plan dinners for the week and make a grocery list of only things we need, but I haven't been able to get the Sunday food prep in because we don't usually get our food for the week until Sunday evening. I know the toddler throws a little extra work in there for us ;) but I seriously need to figure out how to get this to work without sacrificing family time.

    1. We typically go Saturday mornings after the gym. I have also done it Fridays after work, or early Sunday morning, too, if needed. What about utilizing the grocery pickup at Harris Teeter or Walmart? You could stock your cart during the week, and then schedule your pickup for a time when you'll be out and about on the weekend.

    2. Thanks for the idea! We do use HT pick up when time is really tight, but it's the whole making the list thing that takes forever. If I can get my act together and add to the list during the week like you suggest, that would be helpful. xoxo

  4. Want to learn more about IIFYM! Trying to balance better with food on days I do workout and days I don't workout!