The Intentional Habit of Using a Meal Plan
Welcome to week 2 of the Habits of the IntentionallyFit. Last week we talked about creating measurable goals. What kind of goals did you make? I decided to create a goal for my business IntentionallyFit. I will offer two accountability groups every month those people I coach.
Today we are talking about the Second Habit of the IntentionallyFit…
Create or Use a Specific Meal Plan
One of the most important things in learning to take care of your body and it’s health is nutrition. Fueling your body with the essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and knowing how much of each of those things you need will determine your body’s total health. Nutrition affects your immune system, your sleep cycle, your hormone cycle, your thought processes, and all the other physical and emotional aspects of your life. It’s a huge thing! So, why do we leave it to chance?
Choosing the right meal plan can be difficult. I was at the library the other day and noticed that there are literally hundreds of books on what to eat, most of them focusing on a “diet” or how to lose weight. Healthy fit people know that you must fuel your body well to have it function at it’s best. Remember you can look fit, but not actually be healthy on the inside!
What are some important things to remember when choosing a meal plan?
First, what are your goals?
Your meal plan should work with you to reach your desired health and fitness goals. If you want to build muscle, then your meal plan will need to account for the extra protein and calories you will need to do so. If you are looking to lose weight, does is have a calorie deficit that allows you to work out and not starve?
Does it Include All Food Groups?
I might step on some toes here… does it include all sorts of different colored foods? Does it vilify certain food groups? While there is nothing wrong with eliminating things like processed foods and sugared sweets, there is a danger in saying you need to eliminate all carbs or all fats. We need those kinds of foods for our bodies to work correctly, the important thing is to choose the HEALTHY amount and versions of those food groups. You may need to do research or talk to a nutritionist in some cases.
Is the plan realistic long term?
This is super important! No matter how effective a meal plan is, it won’t be if you can’t stick to it. If it calls for drastic measures or super expensive food, most people won’t be able to follow it for life. A meal plan should move you into a healthy lifestyle that is sustainable for your life. Most diets don’t work because people return to unhealthy lifestyle eating after they have “finished” the diet. People who are intentionally fit do so for the long haul, not just the short term.
Hey everyone! If you have just joined us, you are just in time. We have been talking about budget friendly ways of filling our 21 Day/Portion Fix colored buckets. I’ve saved everyone’s favorite yellow bucket for last! Most people I talk to have no difficulties getting all their yellow buckets in, but I still want to help you find the most economic way possible. So onward to the yellow bucket!
Tortillas are a staple in my home, in fact they have replaced bread entirely. Whole wheat ones, while they are not extremely pricey, do tend to creep up in price when you only get 8-10 in a pack. Corn tortillas can come in stacks of thirty while being under $2 and even at two per serving that’s quite a bargain.
There are so many varieties of beans out there and they are full of fiber! It is so good to add these little carbs into your meal plan. You can find cans of beans for under seventy cents, but the real budget cutting ones come dry and in a bag. They require a little extra work but if you are serious about cutting costs this is a big help!
Another cost saving gem is brown rice. You don’t have to pick the fancy stuff, the unbranded or store brand works just as well for a side of rice, unless of course you’re making sushi, but that just doesn’t fit with the cost cutting budget.
Another great “dry good” that saves you money! Small batches really last and you could easily have a bag that lasts two to four weeks that costs you under $3!
Okay, I might be pushing it here, but based on the size of the yellow bucket, I feel like you can get a lot of servings depending on the type of potato and the season. My favorite is a sweet potato, but those little red new potatoes can be pretty cost effective during the right season.
Hello! I hope you are doing well and are enjoying Spring! We are doing a series on filling the colored buckets of the 21 Day/Portion Fix meal plan as economically as possible. There is a misconception out there that to eat on a healthy plan you must spend a lot of money. It is just not true. You can eat clean and stay on a budget as well. This week we are filling the blue bucket which holds a variety of healthy fats.
There are so many different types of cheese out there and the price varies. Some of the more budget friendly are mozzarella, Monterey jack, and feta. If you fill the whole bucket with shredded cheese, you’ll find that it is a fairly big serving!
Not all variety of nuts are budget friendly but peanuts, walnuts, and pecans can normally be found without breaking the bank. If you shop at a place that offers bulk foods, you may find almonds for a decent price as well.
I love hummus, the spicy red pepper kind is my favorite. Aldi carries a great variety that is much cheaper than many brand name chain grocery stores. An even better idea might be to try and make your own!
Hello! We are on our third bucket in our budget friendly options for the 21 Day Fix series. I hope this is helping you see that you can totally eat well on a budget. This week’s bucket is the GREEN one, the one you fill with veggies. This is the bucket most people tell me that they don’t always get in during the day. I understand completely seeing as it is normally the bucket you have the most times per day, especially if you are on one of the higher brackets. The great news is that there are a plethora of choices out there that are super budget friendly!
Remember, just as with the purple bucket, eating in season will always give your budget a little more wiggle room!
I know, there’s three listed in one, but all three of them are fairly budget friendly and you tend to get a lot of bang for your buck! Look for bright colored leaves without funky colors around the edges.
There are so many varieties to choose from within the squash family. I typically choose zucchini, butternut, and spaghetti squash. Remember in season choices will be the most economical.
Sold in almost any way you would like them, whole, baby, sliced, and shredded! Whole will be the cheapest since you would do the work of cleaning and cutting. Also, don’t forget to keep the peels and ends to make homemade stock and broth.
Adding onions to your food is an easy way to get your greens in and add flavor at the same time! Chopping them up into small fine bits you can “hide” them in your meat for those of you who aren’t particularly happy with their texture.
Great in salads and sandwiches, cucumbers are always readily available and friendly to your budget.
Bonus: Cabbage and Romaine
These leafy veggies are great as salad “stuffers.” One full head of romaine is typically about three full greens! So those bags that contain three sets of them, hold nine total green buckets full! So nine buckets for about two bucks is quite the deal!
We are currently talking about filling our 21 Day Fix colored buckets with budget friendly foods. Last time, we discussed proteins or our red bucket fodder. Today we’re going to talk about my favorite bucket! The purple bucket is filled with fruit and there isn’t a bucket I like more.
Shop “In Season”
Our budget friendly purples start with the idea to choose “in season” varieties. Choosing produce with current harvest times will help your food budget stretch further. So ideally during this current fall season apples will be the most budget friendly and coming up next in winter you will typically find citrus fruits to be the most economical. Spring will be bountiful with strawberries and blueberries topping your list and summer provides an awesome combination, but melons are the cheapest for the amount of servings per individual fruit.
Outside of in season harvest options, here are a few staple budget friendly fruits.
These are great! Full of potassium and around $.50 pound, you can stock up regularly. The bonus is that one banana is two purples, so you get 2 for 1 in this deal!
So many varieties available, including cotton candy flavored! These can even be frozen and eaten as a sweet icy treat.
Chock full of vitamin C and so juicy! A bag of navel oranges can run around $3.00 for around 10-12 oranges. That’s pretty budget friendly if you ask me!
These are definitely the most bang for your buck! A $5.00 watermelon can fill your buckets for two full weeks! The bonus here is that watermelon freezes pretty well and helps keep you hydrated!
1 flat iron steak (about 3 lbs)
1 red onion sliced
4-5 small sweet peppers (red, orange, and yellow)
3-5 cloves garlic minced
Small bunch of minced cilantro (as desired)
Equal amounts cumin and chili powder (about 1 TBS each)
chipotle powder (optional for kick)
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4-1/2 cup fresh squeezed lime juice (reserve one full lime for after cooking)
1/2 cup stock (I used homemade chicken stock)
Marinate all together for at least 8 hours/overnight
Grill the steak as desired (mine is rare-medium rare)
Cook veggies separately in either an iron skillet or broil them in the oven. (if you broil, watch closely!) Squeeze the fresh lime over the veggies and enjoy!
My Total Results: 60 days of Core de Force and the 3 Day Refresh
The picture above is 30 days. The left side picture was taken after the 3 Day Refresh and is at 125 pounds. The picture on the right side is me 35 days later, but also at 125 pounds! See, the scale doesn’t always tell the whole story.
I would love to help you have your own transformation! Our challenge group will provide recipes, tips, how to set yourself up for meal prep success, accountability, motivation, and daily support. We all do better when we have people cheering us on, let me be your personal cheerleader!
Let’s do this together!
Sign up for the 30 Day Accountability Group
If you are interested in more meal prep help, you might want to consider joining our 2 Week Clean Eats group!