Happy Wednesday y’all. We made it! I love Wednesdays because it signals the middle of the week and because Whine About It probably has a new episode, it’s the little things sometimes, and it’s been one of those weeks.
As some of you may have heard my dog of 15.5 years had to be put to sleep on Monday and I have been an utter wreck. I thank you all so much for your support and understanding, if my eyes are a little puffy this week it’s just because I’m remembering all the wonderful times I’ve had with my Amber girl. If any of you have a furry friend who is like family, then you know she was a big part of ours and will be missed greatly.
Alright, I won’t go too much into that right now, more on my favorite fur-ball later. Today I want to talk about the 3 stePs to a successful real food lifestyle. I got this idea when I was chatting with Pearl on our podcast this week and figured I would go into more detail to explain what I meant by these ” 3 P’s”.
As a real food dietitian, I have many people tell me that eating clean or healthy is “too hard”, “too expensive” and/or “too time consuming”. I understand. However, your health is the most important thing that you have and without it you would have nothing. So, we need to plan for success and I find many people fail to reach their health goals because they fail to plan, prep and prioritize, my 3 P’s in a real food pea pod. Working on these three areas can help you make this way of eating more of a lifestyle and can reduce the stress of worrying about whether you will be able to follow a real food approach.
So here are the “3 stePs” to success with a real food lifestyle, dive on in:
When I mention meal planning I see my clients and friends clam up and shut down. It’s like I told them they now have an 8PM curfew, and can never have chocolate again. WHOA, hold up I never said that. Meal planning can be super overwhelming, I get it. I am not asking you to go all Martha Stewart on your planning but I am asking you to think ahead here. It seems overwhelming at first but let’s break it down and start simple.
I want you to first make a list of ALL the meals you love to eat and love/know how to make. Keep that list around and accessible. Now for the next week I want you to make a list of what you want to eat for dinner Monday through Friday from that list (USE LEFTOVERS TOO!). Okay, great! Now, make a shopping list, go shopping and move on to steP 2.
Alright, so you planned! Now what? You must prep. I have gotten clients past the planning stages but they end up falling flat during the week. Why? Because they forgot to prep. Planning is all fine and dandy until it’s 9PM on Wednesday night, you have kids screaming, your head is pounding and all you can muster is a call to the local pizza shop, we’ve all been there.
What would’ve happened if you had prepped? This steP is important because we must have food that is ready to cook and/or consume in order to be successful. In a SAD (standard american diet) world that means having boxes, bags, packages and cans available for the convenience factor. Sorry, I am not going to give you that green-light today. Instead, I want to challenge you to start prepping for the week once you have planned it in steP 1.
After planning, set aside time to prep meals both mentally and physically. Print out recipes, plan who will cook what, chop veggies, boil eggs, etc. Remember, this is your health and when you struggle finding time to plan and prep, head down to steP number 3.
Okay, time for the sass. Yes, eating real food can be inconvenient and yes it costs money and yes it may be out of your comfort zone. Guess what? IT IS SO WORTH IT. Yes, YOU are WORTH IT. And if you have this thought process then it is time for you to PRIORITIZE real food as a way of living. You need to prioritize your health first and foremost.
I once had someone argue with me that eating real food was too expensive as she texted away on her new iPhone with a manicure and beautiful accessories. I am not here to pass judgement on anyone because I know that everyone is fighting their own fight. HOWEVER, we do need food, shelter and water to live and we do not need cell phones, spa treatments and jewelry. Those things are all nice but as a country we choose to spend less of our hard earned dollar on food and more on superfluous items.
We must eat. However, we get to choose what we eat. Why not put good fuel into our engines to ensure that we are setting ourselves up for success? Sure sometimes it might seem that the upfront cost is more than a bag of chips but I can promise you the long term costs are not comparable. Use your food as your insurance plan now and reap the benefits in the short and long term later.
So there you have it, the 3 stePs to real food success. Start today and let me know how it goes. Remember, YOU are worth it! Have a great Wednesday!
ps. if you have a furry friend give them an extra hug for me today 🙂