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Food should not be an afterthought

By Tracy J Reck, Exercise & Nutrition Coach in Worcester

I’m not really given to using the dreaded ‘should’ in my blogs. I am one for choice, flexibility and giving yourself a chance to succeed. Usually, ‘shoulds’ don’t gel with that approach. But on this topic, I feel a should is required.

I have just finished with prepping some salad for the next few days. It’s 2.32pm on a Thursday and not only did I take time from my work day to spiralise a carrot or two, it was mid work day that I went shopping for the food I prepped. That might sound like sacrilege, because work time is work time, right?

Nope. Actually every day is a day of your life, to be used for whatever is necessary for you to thrive. The idea that between the hours of 9-5 you should be working is a social construct, and it’s one that gives rise to food being treated as an afterthought.

If it wasn’t, no-one would work through lunch. No-one would trudge into work having skipped breakfast. No-one would crash home again at the end of the day and have no idea what they are going to eat for dinner.

Food should not be an afterthought.

Most of the people who speak to me about wanting to improve their health go straight for exercise. They get caught up thinking that the best thing they can do is spend time working out. Far more critical is the time they commit to figuring out what they are going to eat this week, buying that food and then prepping whatever needs sorting in advance to make it all flow easily.

We are keen to carve out a window of time to move our bodies, but not even aware that a chunk of time also needs to be dedicated to what we’re putting into them. That’s a problem. Planning, shopping and prepping – those are the very habits that will transform your eating, and therefore your health. You cannot change your health in the long term without making eating healthy food SUPER easy for yourself.

Feel free to immerse yourself in recipe books and ideas of how to make healthy food tasty, but be under no illusion that the task stops there. Grab a bundle of those recipes and put them into a plan for the week. Figure out your breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks for every day. Then make sure the right ingredients are in your house and you’ve prepped anything you can in advance.

Otherwise, on that day when you get a fit of the stuffits, you’re done for. Do you really think you’ll have the inclination to chop cabbage when you’ve had a rough day and all you want to do is drink Baileys and eat crisps? But if it’s already there, prepped and ready to go, your chances of eating it are FAR higher.

Don’t leave your food to chance. Get organised, get prepared and you’re making it easy to succeed.

You can read more about Tracy and her work at www.naturallyexuberant.co.uk