Make Healthy Food Choices and Stay on Track with a Meal Planner
About eight months ago I made a radical diet change to improve my overall health and help me lose 10 pesky pounds I had been carrying around for a while. The eating plan was simple: no refined flour or sugar, no dairy, and lots of lean protein, veggies and complex carbohydrates, like sweet potatoes. That paired with a gym routine of three to four 60-minute workouts per week and I quickly dropped the excess weight (I actually ended up losing 16 pounds!) and felt better than I had in years.
The holidays, though, threw me off track. The office was loaded with sweet treats, popcorn tins and candy. I am a sucker for sugar.
Determined to get back into my healthy eating habits, I created this laminated meal planner for my refrigerator door. On it, I can list what I’ll have for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks for the entire week. I can even include items for my grocery list, which really makes shopping once a week a lot easier.
Here are the steps to create this custom meal planner:
1.) Since I’m not as design-savvy as I would like to be, I asked my brother Gavin, who is a graphic designer and fellow healthy eater, to lay out a weekly template in basic design software that includes space for three meals a day, snacks and an area for making a grocery list. Mine ended up being 14”x20”.
2.) I saved the finished file on a flash drive and took it to my local FedEx Office® for printing and lamination. I requested dry-erase lamination because it will make the meal planner reusable week after week. You can also upload this online through the Print Online portal and pick it up at your local store when it’s ready.
3.) Hang the planner on your refrigerator door (it’s a centralized location and right where the food is!) with magnets and start planning your meals for the week. If you want to create some fun, personalized magnets, check out this previous Out of Office entry on how to do that at FedEx Office as well.
Whether you’re starting down a new path or just need a little push to get back into the swing of things, I hope this project helps you achieve your resolutions and goals in 2013. Happy New Year!