Meal Planning: The First Step

Meal planning is one of the first steps to losing weight. You won’t be able to achieve weight loss just by counting calories or going on some trendy diet. Sure, you may lose a few pounds, but you won’t be able to keep it off. The problem with counting calories is you will get bored with it very quickly and you will feel like you’re starving all the time. The problem with fad diets is they may help you to lose weight, but they won’t help you to keep it off. You have to have a complete lifestyle change. You have to change the way you look at, think, and feel about food.

Trying to lose weight is something I have always struggled with. It seems once I put on the pounds, I find it impossible to get them back off. Every time I have had a kid I put on an extra 20 pounds that I just couldn’t get rid of. Before I had my first son I was 150. After he was born, my weight plateaued at 170. When I had my second son, my weight plateaued at 190. Now I’ve had my daughter and my weight has plateaued at 225, but it is slowly coming off and I haven’t even started exercising!

The first step on my journey to weight loss was meal planning. I know what you’re thinking, “That’s it?!” Not so much. I researched how many calories per day I should eat to lose weight. I also researched low calorie meals on Pinterest. Then I started sitting down and planning out the meals I would have throughout the week. My lunches are usually the same thing so I can focus most of my grocery budget on dinner and freezer friendly homemade breakfast items for my hubby to eat on his way to work.

I downloaded a cookbook app on my phone. Every time I find a recipe that my family likes I put it on there so we can use it again and throw it into the rotation. I also have a word document on my computer with all of the recipes that we’ve tried and the ones that we are going to try for the week. If you want to one-up me, you can go ahead and plan out dinners for the entire month and write out your shopping lists. I usually do mine at the last minute because as much as I love planning, I am also a procrastinator. It’s something I am seriously working on overcoming!

So far, I have lost 4 pounds in 3 weeks. I am down to 221! I will eventually start exercising once my house doesn’t look like a walking construction zone. We are in the middle of a total renovation, but my husband works so much it’s hard to find time to get all of our projects done. Exercise is super important for weight loss. Right now I just try to get my exercise in by cleaning up messes my kids make, doing laundry, and carrying around my heavy 8 month old. You would think I would be skinny by now right?!