Learn Everything there is to know about strength, fitness and lifestyle for dads.
When going into a phase of training that requires you to cut calories and not feel like the walls are closing in on you by 2pm, stopping yourself reaching for the biscuit tin takes serious levels of self motivation and will power. Now, you might have considered meal prepping your breakfast, lunches and snacks to avoid a mid morning or afternoon crash. however, soon realised the meal prep life wasn't for me.
Spending hours on a weekend or weeknight chopping, cooking, measuring my balanced grub is not something that feels like fun. the mess, the lost time, and the fact I have almost zero fridge space to store 30 plastic boxes means its unlikely I was ever going to adhere to this for any length of time.
And nor should I. Because, as I am about to tell you now, you don't need to food prep to get good results.
You can still have an amazing physique and perform like a man half your age without wasting your life partitioning chicken and rice. Here's why...
Companies will do the hard work for you
Just google 'food prep companies' and you'll get 115,000,000 results (as of the time of writing this). No matter what your goal, price range, dietary habits or location I guarantee there is a company out there that already fits your needs. Now, some people might balk at the idea of paying for 'packed lunch' but let me ask you this: How many times has your poor preparation led to you eating out? How much food do you waste as a result of poor preparation and are your meals cooked by trained professionals whose ACTUAL JOB it is to make your macro balanced lunch break taste great? that's what I thought. So, work out a budget, do some research and save yourself a LOT of time.
Technology will do the legwork
One of the key ideas behind food prepping is portion control. If you are sticking to a strict diet, preparing all your food means you can cater for macros and calories ensuring you don't go over your allowance.
However, with MyFitnessPal and other app technology you simply scan a barcode or punch in what you want and the app does the legwork for you. Once you set your parameters you can essentially hit targets 'on the fly' so much easier than when Arnie and his pals would have to look up protein content of a chicken breast in the encyclopedia of cooking.
Now you might need to get used to weights and values, but these are never completely true numbers when prepping at home. So save time, download some apps and eat on the go.
Life is just too busy
have three businesses, two kids, a wife, a couple of hobbies and STILL have to find some down time.
Life is busy, and probably a lot busier for others more pressed than me. If you're super-busy, simply finding the time to cook it is near impossible and eating it might be as difficult too. My advice, eat on the go, using tech to guide your choices.
The day 3 problem
That chicken and chickpea curry might seem great on Monday, but by Wednesday it's getting tiresome and by Friday its just plain funky. Let's be real, leftovers aren't as good as the real one-time deal. If they were we'd have leftover restaurants everywhere. For example... Salads are nightmare for food preppers because the perishable nature means as soon as you've sliced that cucumber, it's already degrading into watery mush. So this often means prepping twice in one week.... No thanks...
A sustainable way
Personally I think the best way to hit your macronutrient and calorie goals is to use a combination of all the above to find a solution that works for you. Now that might actually be Meal prep, but if it isn't then don't worry. You'll still have the physique you want if you just stick to the basic tenets of calorie control and a good macronutrient profile. Use tech to your advantage, pay a company to save you time (and money), prep when you need to and get used to finding a sustainable method that fits with you and your family.