MEAL PREP: A NEW TREND BASED ON OLD TRICKS
It doesn’t have to be new to be trendy – meal prep is a glowing example of that. So, what’s this trend about? As you've probably already figured out, it’s about meal preparation – but with a twist. It’s basically “precooking 2.0”, with a focus on “pre” rather than on “cooking”. What’s in it for you? Well, that’s easy: Instead of spending time cooking each and every day, you do it just once or twice a week while making enough to last you a couple of days. That way, you can enjoy your own self-made food every day without wasting time in the kitchen that you could easily put to better use – like your workout regime.
You love it when a plan comes together
First, you have to make a plan. Meal prep only works if you think ahead. That means: Decide what you want to make and then create a shopping list. If you’re looking for tasty and healthy recipes tailored for strength athletes like you, our hashtag #dymatizekitchen has you covered: You’ll find loads of dishes with or without fitness nutrition as a major ingredient – choose whatever fits your mood and appetite. However, also keep the size of your fridge in mind – you don’t want to prepare more than it (and you) can handle. To develop a feel for how much of each ingredient you really need, start with simple dishes and precook for only two or three days. That might seem like a lot to consider just for making some food, but it’s way more of a hassle if you start cooking and cleaning the kitchen afterward every day.
Easy, efficient, healthy, tasty!
Buy fresh produce, meat or whatever the ingredients of your dish are and use them to prepare your meal on the same day. When you’re done, store your dish (once cold) in food containers, bottling jars or in Tupperware. That way you have full control of the size of each serving. This helps you consume just the right amount of food to help you reach your training goal – no more, no less. Meal prep is an easy way to help you keep track of your diet plan. Because you’re the one cooking, you also have full control over which nutrients you ingest at all times – which is not the case if you dine out.
Obey the system!
Not only is there a plan to be made about buying and preparing your dish, there’s a preferable storing technique as well – this is true for whatever food container you choose. If your dish contains a sauce or dressing, these are the first you fill in so that they make the bottom layer. More solid stuff like rice, noodles or meat go on top of that, and fruit and vegetables should always be uppermost.
Hot (and cold) tips
So, what do you do with your filled containers? If your dish is solely made with fresh and uncooked ingredients, you shouldn’t keep it in your fridge for more than two days before eating it. Fried or cooked food generally lasts up to four days. You’ve made enough to last you even longer? Fear not – in this case, you can just store your food for later by placing it in your freezer. If you plan on microwaving your food, your best bet is to use microwave-proof containers – if you do, you don’t need to shuffle your food around prior to warming it.
Small effort, big payoff
You’ve noticed: Meal prep doesn’t work without undertaking a certain amount of planning – the effort pays off though. If you're serious about bodybuilding, precooking is an efficient solution for preparing food in advance and saving precious time. It’s best to do this whenever you have some free time on your hands. Once you get the hang of it, the possibilities are nearly endless. You’ll have healthy food on hand whenever you’re hungry, wherever you are – plus, you’ll have more time for your training. And if that doesn’t make for a convincing argument to a strength athlete like yourself, what does?