Depends. Maybe. It can be. Yes. Most definitely.
Why is it so hard sometimes?! (Hint: it became a lot easier once I switched to a meal plan that has variations of PIZZA…)
I used to really gear up for any new meal plan I started. I remember the first time I actually started (and completed) a diet – it was the Bill Phillips Body for Life 12 Week Challenge. I bought the book, studied it, made the grocery shopping list, bought all of my food, prepped it and stored it in 624 different containers in my fridge and felt ready (??) to go!
Now, that book and meal plan are both wonderful. Where I went wrong with it was totally ME and I’ll explain why.
I live in the moment. I do before I think. (And that my friends, is why our kids are so close in age…ha! Just kidding.) I purchased the domain for my blog without having the slightest clue as to what a blog really even was…and if that’s not living on the edge, then I don’t know what is.
Here’s the flip side to living in the moment and being spontaneous – I am NOT a planner. Planning something out in advance with lots of detail is not my cup of tea. Or cup of bulletproof coffee, I should say…I have a short attention span. Organization is not something that’s associated with my name. I was so excited last weekend to have bought 8 storage bins (on CLEARANCE) for all of our Christmas decorations. Proud to say, I packed all of the decorations in them, labeled, and sealed the bins. Not as proud to say that they’re still sitting upstairs instead of down in the crawlspace where they belong. (Took the picture and STILL didn’t put them away. Maybe later today…)
What does any of this have to do with eating?
Maybe you’re like me and can relate to any of those ‘issues’ I listed above. I can do the meal prep and planning if there’s an end in sight – which there was when I completed the 12 week program. But what happens after that?
For me, I went right back to my old ways because I felt as if I had been released from a lifestyle that I wasn’t GOOD at.
Is that an excuse for not toughening up and making necessary changes in my life? I hope not!
It took me a while to realize this but I truly believe you MUST find a meal plan/lifestyle that fits YOU. Additionally, once you find the meal plan you like – MAKE IT YOUR OWN.
Do you want to cook a different meal each night? Go ahead and do it! If not, keep your meals the SAME each week to take the thinking out of it. (That’s what I do!)
Do you like having your meals prepped and ready to go in the fridge every day? Do it! Does the idea of meal prepping on a Sunday make you want to scratch a chalkboard for 4 hours instead? Find simple, easy meals that you can make on the spot that are on track with your meal plan!
Here’s my breakfast when I’m not drinking bulletproof coffee for breakfast: sausage and 2 eggs. Hot sauce. Takes 2 minute to make.
My point is this: you have a unique lifestyle. It’s different from mine, so what works for me MIGHT not work for you. And vice versa. Finding ways to cater your meal plan to your lifestyle is KEY to sticking to it.
So back to my original question – is it hard to stay on track with a meal plan?
It’s as hard as you make it!
If you don’t like to plan, prep, or cook…don’t pick something that requires you to plan, prep, and cook the majority of the time! If you like simple, fast, and easy to make meals…find foods within your meal plan that are easily accessible and simple to make. Don’t feel like you need to make extravagant meals every single day. You don’t! I don’t, and it’s been quite simple to stay on track. I literally eat the same thing every single day during the week – with some variation at dinner. Is that boring? Maybe to some, but it takes the thinking out of what I’m going to eat and keeps me on track.
What do you do to stay on track with your own meal plan? I’d love to hear it!
Until next time…