A famous saying I’m sure we’ve all heard before. But how do you translate that to your life? For some it will mean dinner out, beer gardens with friends and other forms of socialising. For others it means a family roast for everyone who can fit around the table. Whatever it means to you make sure you’re doing something that will truly support your upcoming week. I post on my Instagram a lot about my food prep and it generates a lot of questions so I thought I’d finally put it all together here and share it.
On a Sunday I have a lie in (in comparison to the rest of the week, usually 8am is my lie in!) I like to take the dog for a really good walk to tire him out, fit in some yoga and the most crucial thing I do on a Sunday is food prep. I wont pretend there isn’t weeks when I’m lazy and I don’t do it or I only half do it, but I ALWAYS regret this. If we have a weekend away I have to take the Monday off to do my housework, laundry and food prepping otherwise I feel the knock on affect to my whole week impacts my mental state, not to mention my bank balance!
I work full time office hours, I practice every morning before work, work on the desk at a yoga studio one night a week, usually go to the studio at least one other evening if not two and then generally practice Saturday and/or Sunday too. So as you can see, if you throw in walking the dog, spending time with my BF and trying to see family and friends, it doesn’t leave heaps of time for other things so it’s imperative I use this time well.
I like to eat home cooked food, as un-processed as possible and packed with goodness to fuel me up every day. If I use 2 hours of my Sunday to rustle up my breakfast, lunches and snacks for the week ahead plus usually a batch of grains/brown rice and roasted veggies to bulk out and speed up my mid week dinners then it helps me avoid making silly moves when I get in from work and I’m SO HUNGRY I end up eating 4 slices of bread straight from the cupboard! Or I’ll get a takeaway of some sort, the choices I make when I’m hungry are never good.
I’ve been a lot worse at this before now but luckily much more motivated as of late. I’ve found planning my evening meals to support if I’m going to be home really late after a class or need to eat quite early and light to make a later class has really helped. Any bits of prep like cooking the rice or batch roasting veggies at the weekend while I’m in the kitchen anyway is always a winner for speeding up after work healthy meals.
But the main thing I think that helps me stay on track is the breakfast, lunch and snack prepping. I’ll try to make something that covers more than one day, like a soup or a dhal and then batch cook and freeze portions for the next week wherever I can too. I’ve found so many amazing recipes lately on the new Deliciously Ella App which helps with this- the coconut lentil Dhal is being eaten almost every day in our house right now. We have overnight oats a lot, I’ll make 5 portions on a Sunday and they’ll last me fine through to the Friday, I find smoothies are fine for around 3 days or you can rustle up a pot of porridge in 2 minutes before bed if you’re low on fridge space fitting all those meals in.
We soak almonds every Saturday and make almond milk for our oats and smoothies, we then use the ground almonds to make Deliciously Ella’s Almond Cacao Date Balls. It makes the milk and date balls that bit more affordable without buying the stuff full of additives which might be cheaper. We freeze the date balls and find they’re good for a couple if weeks, if they ever make it that long. And I promise you making almond milk is not as scary as it sounds, for both the milk and date balls I do recommend investing in a good blender, it really does makes all the difference, I have a Nutri Ninja which is processor, blender and Nutri bullet all in one and I feel actually very fairly priced on Amazon.
Another mid-week item I couldn’t live without is our elevenses oat muffins. Made from ground up oats (another reason for a good blender), dates, chia seeds, mashed banana and dried fruit or fresh blueberries, a batch of these happily lasts 5 stays if kept in a good container away from the sun. During summer months we do keep them in the fridge as the heat of last years heatwave made them go all mouldy in a few days, but hey, you live and you learn.
Now as you’ve seen and I’m always quick to admit I do fit a lot in to my week, it can be tiring, it can mean I don’t see as much of Dan (my BF) as I’d like to at times and between all this, work stresses and currently my study prep for my YTT in October I find it’s so important to dedicate some time to each other. Among some other things we do such as walks and date nights our favourite by far is Movie Night.
Move Night has been running probably just over 18 months now, it happens on a Sunday and we alternate each week as to who picks the film. We try to find ones we’ve never seen, or seen but loved so much we need another go, we’ve dug out some old classics and at Christmas we go with Christmas themed films! We turn our phones off and move them away to stop us both scrolling social media like we and the rest of the millennials do 99% of the time and we pop a big bowl of popcorn. We get together on the snuggle chair and after hectic week/day/few hours it really grounds us before bed and another week of being busy and on the go.
Whatever your Sunday ritual may be I really do recommend dedicating a little time to prepping for the week ahead. Iron all your shirts, make your lunches and then during the week you’ll have that little bit less pressure on yourself, freeing you up for the things you love. It doesn’t even feel like a chore to us which I realise reading this back it might sound like.. TWO HOURS IN THE KITCHEN ON A SUNDAY? But I guess I’m lucky I love cooking, and Dan is great at helping too so we’ve found a routine with it now and it just feels so normal.
Now finally, something I always intended to do but never really go into before my pre-work yoga started and in all honesty it became essential. The last thing I want to advise is to pack your bag the night before! Get your clothes ready for work, pack your lunchbox in the fridge ready, get your shoes out etc. it might sound simple but you know that feeling when your alarm goes off and all you want is 5 more minutes in bed? Well if you know you’ve done all this then that 5 minutes can happen! And once you’re up and getting ready for the gym or yoga or if you go straight from home to work, you’ll fine it will help take that little bit of stress away for you in your morning sleepy state. Meaning you start your day on a better foot and that knock on affect for your week can be magical.