Tips for Skipping Boredom and Routine with Fun Meal Planning
Meal planning isn’t rocket science! Taking some time to plan and prepare meals for the week can seem like a huge challenge, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Meal planning can be as simple as preparing lunches to stop yourself from eating out during the work week. But beyond helping you save a few dollars, meal planning is a great way to keep healthy and stick to your diet.
Why You Should Plan Your Meals
While you’ll likely save some money in the long run with meal planning, be aware there can be a decent initial investment to get you started. After all, you’re getting your meals done for the week all in one go. But it is an investment that pays off! Meal planning allows you to carefully consider all the food you consume in a week. You get control over the portions you consume, too.
But let’s make one thing clear: meal planning is not a diet. Instead, meal planning is a way to take greater control of the food you eat. If you find you’re always reaching for a take-out menu at the end of the day, or step out of the office to grab lunch when your stomach starts growling, then you should consider planning out your meals.
However, once you start meal planning, it’s easy to fall into a routine. And when routines get boring, we stray from the beaten path in an attempt to shake things up. The solution? Keep meal planning fun with these five tips and motivators!
1 -Themes for Each Day
Eating the same thing for an entire week gets exhausting. Even your favorite dishes and recipes can get boring and stale if it’s what you’re eating day in, day out. Try making meals around a few fun themes, and shake things up week-to-week to add some variety! Dedicate each day to a specific theme—veggies on Monday, seafood on Thursdays, for example—or explore international cuisines for a start.
2 – Menu Board Motivation
Knowing what you’ll be eating for the day is fantastic way to remind yourself of the amazing meal to come. Don’t leave your meal plan on a boring spreadsheet or calendar, bring it to life! Put it up on the wall or fridge, and put a bit of effort into decorating it. It’s a little thing, but it’ll go a long way, and every time you take a glance at your meal plan, you’re going to start salivating as you think about what’s in store.
3 – Show Off Your Work
If you’re on social media, type #mealplan into the search bar and browse through the results. This is a great way to stay motivated and to share your own meal planning success! Take a photo of your meal prep for the week and use a few hashtags to share it across Instagram and Twitter. Who knows, maybe your next meal plan picture may inspire another person to try it for themselves!
4 – Get the Family Involved
Why should you do all the work planning and cooking meals? Get your family involved in meal planning! Bring them shopping with you, have them take part in cooking, and challenge them to find a new recipe they want to try. Getting the family involved is also a terrific way to introduce children to a healthier lifestyle, and shows them that fresh and nutritious food can be fun and delicious.
5 – Introduce New Recipes That Get You Excited
We all fall into ruts and dull habits now and then. As the familiar becomes convenient, it’s important to keep things interesting. Research recipes online, find food blogs that interest you, and experiment with flavors that you may have passed over. Start off slow by changing up one meal a week, and eventually you’ll have a whole stable of recipes you can swap every week.
Meal planning is an amazing way to take greater control of your diet and the food you eat. If you find yourself reaching for store-bought snacks too often, or are simple frustrated with having to cook every night after a long day of work, then try meal planning, and focus on keeping it fun. You won’t regret it!