Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Power of Planning Ahead: Why We Cook Once A Week :-)

One of the key things that I've found to maintaining and continuing my weight loss (aside from my 12 step compulsive eating recovery program work) is planning.  

Planning the food I'm going to eat tomorrow.  
Planning extra food to take "just in case" I get tied up at work past 6pm (um, wait one sec... that's pretty much every day!).  
Planning our grocery list each week.
Planning our cooking strategy. 

Yes, thats right folks, I said "cooking strategy!"  

In our house, we usually cook once a week.  Yes, that is what I said.  We usually cook only once a week--and sometimes that food lasts into the next week (a two-week bonus!).  And that miracle only happens with a cooking strategy.

Before you roll your eyes and think I'm nuts (oh wait, that may have happened already :-)) let me tell you that spending 2-4 hours on one day each week researching recipes, making a grocery list based on the recipes, writing up a plan for how to do our "bulk cook" and then executing that plan by cooking & tupperwaring to our hearts content saves us from:

  • HOURS and HOURS of obsessing about what food we are going to eat (letting my disease of compulsive overeating have a field day scanning my mind for goodies) or
  • frantically throwing something together at the end of a long day or
  • feeling hunger pangs start about 1/2 way through the afternoon because we didn't it a solid lunch or
  • spending tons of money on take-out!  

I'm not going to lie, sometimes its a painful exercise in organizational discipline (especially at first).  But cooking on one day of the week to prepare all your meals for the week is AMAZING and quick.  It is also very very smart if you are a busy person.  I wish I could say it was my idea, but its not.  It is actually my Mom's!  

When we were growing up, my Mom was a working single parent but she didn't want any of us kids to not get the nutritious meals we needed.  So ONCE A MONTH she took one of her weekends off and spent it doing a massive grocery shop, a massive cook and a massive tupperware freeze!!  And, bam!  We had delicious, nutritious meals for the whole month that she could heat up when she got home from work each day!  She got the plan out of a book called (very originally:-)) "Once-a-Month Cooking"

Of course, when I looked up "Once-A-Month Cooking" for my husband and I last year, it was filled with recipes from the 70's/80's that were sooooooo not vegan, sugar-free, gluten-free or anti-inflammatory :-)  But the strategy it presents is awesome!  

Next post I'll share with you our "Bulk Cook Plan" for this week (that we worked on over last weekend!)   My plan for the coming weeks is to devote a week to a set of recipes all from ONE of my favorite bloggers online!  That way you can all get the recipes online and see our strategy if you want to try it yourself!  Sound complicated?  Its not.

Check out my next post and I'll tell you all about it!  This week, all the recipes are from The Happy Herbivore (and let me tell you--I just finished one of her chickpea tacos from this week's plan and all I can say is YUMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!)

Next time:  Cooking in BULK Tip:  Week #1 

Coming Soon:
  • PAIN: How to Heal with Food (Part 2)
  • How To Get The BEST Medical Care: Tips to Patients from a Doc
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