My days lately are chaotic and my eating routine feels like one never ending snack. Can you relate?! I’m ready to bring more structure into my routine because I am someone who thrives off of a plan, yet I have to be realistic with what’s going on in the world. If you’re someone who enjoys snacks and knows this is not the time to totally give it up, yet you do want to eat well and in alignment with your goals… you will love this!
I came up with this at home meal plan for myself because it basically allows me to enjoy an indulgent dinner and evening snack while continuing to make progress with my food and fitness.
GOAL: keep daily consumption consistent
The most basic way to say this is that if you begin eating more/burning less, weight gain will happen. I want to keep my overall consumption consistent with what I was doing before all of this social distancing/quarantining. Therefore, I’ve adjusted when I eat my meals, pushing the majority of them off later into the evening to enjoy!
I am trying to stick to Intermittent Fasting (more on that, here), so my breakfast usually happens around 10:30. Prior to this, I enjoy either coffee or a pre-workout and lots of water. My breakfasts are quick, simple, and provide a protein, fat and carb source. Latley, I’ve been opting for a protein shake with toast topped with peanut butter or a protein shake and bowl of oatmeal.
My lunch is typically much “larger” and “heartier” than this, but I’m working on saving my calories/macros for later in the evening. My go-to lunch in half a sandwich or open face sandwich. I pile on a good amount of meat, cheese (always for me ;)) and as many veggies as I have. This keeps it high in protein, nutritious (through veggies) and lower in carbs/overall calories.
You could also think of this as an afternoon snack. However, typical snack food is typically low in protein and higher in carbs and I want this to be the reverse. Again, all so I can enjoy more in the evening. For me, this is when I am making my 2 boys their dinner, which typically we would eat as a family. However with everything going on, my husband and I are usually so busy cleaning up, preparing food and wrapping up work that we don’t get to sit down and eat for more than 5 minutes. So, I reheat myself a small portion of the previous night’s dinner or I make a quick smoothie to sit down with the kids and to tie me over until my delicious dinner.
Once we get our boys down to sleep and once the craziness of the day is over, I’ve been LOVING a late night dinner. My husband and I take our time thinking of what to make, cooking together, plating a nice big portion and we eat on the couch or in bed, watching Netflix. My husband *hates* food in the bed, but I’ve totally converted him… this is such a relaxing end to our night. Plus, I really have to say it’s brought the two of us even closer.
Shortly after dinner… or pretty much right after I’m done eating… I’ll make a little dessert or grab a little snack. My husband and I will FaceTime friends while we eat this or get right back into bed to binge another show.
As I’m typing about our late dinner and PM snack, I have a smile on my face. As I’m sure you can relate… our days are much more stressful than they used to be. We are forced into working full time yet have no childcare, so I’m taking conference calls in the bathroom and have my kids on my lap while I’m sending important emails. Ending our day with an indulgent dinner and evening snack truly gets me through a tough day and feels like a well-deserved treat.