Guest Article from Kim Eagle of Earn that Body:
I honestly hate to use that word “fat” in the title of this blog, but sadly, I do think many people are putting on FAT due to their kid’s after school commitments! I am starting to see this pattern with far too many friends and clients; tell me if this sounds familiar to you:
Your child has baseball at 5pm. So, you pick him/her up at school, rush home to give them a snack and let them start some homework. Before you know it, it is time to get dressed for their sport. You hurry over to the baseball field and then sit for hours while they play. After practice, it’s 6:30-7pm and now everyone Is starving and cranky! You think of the fastest and closest food you can grab, and you once again, RUSH there to eat quickly! Then, you hurry home because your kiddo has to shower and finish that homework! By the time you get home, you feel like you just raced a marathon! The exhaustion is REAL! And if you are like me, you get home and then have to deal with the crazy dogs who are hungry and ready for a walk! Oy vey! The struggle is real! I GET IT!
So, here is the problem. You likely have this happening to you 2-3x/week due to kid’s sport schedules. You can’t continue to eat out and have fast food 2-3x/week AND hope to be fit & healthy. It just won’t work over time. Not to mention, this is NOT the best food for your child who needs healthy options as their bodies are growing!
Okay! So, how can you resolve this unhealthy cycle from your schedule? This is how I do it:
I PLAN! I PLAN! I PLAN! I know it is easier said than done! But, there is no other option for me because I will not eat fast food 2-3x/week. My PREP begins on the weekend! I figure out what I am going to make for dinner on my son’s swim nights. He swims 3x/week at 5pm. So, I need 3 dinners/week that are crock-pot meals, can easily be heated up or do not require cooking! Unfortunately, I am NOT one of those people who can spend all day on Sunday cooking 7 dinners and freezing them. It’s just not who I am or how I roll. But I will figure out what dinners will be cooked, and then, I get the food for those meals early in the week (or that previous weekend).
On swim nights, I cook dinner at noon. I put it all in the crock-pot or cook something like chili that can just be put on the stove for a quick warm up that evening. I prep a salad for those nights and sometimes cornbread (you have to have cornbread with chili! Ha!) Basically, everything I need for dinner is DONE being prepped by 1pm that day. Now, when we rush home from swim (and don’t get home until 7pm) dinner is practically on the table.
I am not willing to let my son’s crazy sports schedule ruin my nutrition, health nor his nutrition and health. So, I take ACTION by PLANNING ahead. I am lucky that I work from the house which enables me to do this. If you do NOT work from home and work in an office, you have 2 choices: 1) Prep those meals and freeze them on the weekend or 2) Pay someone to make you meals a few times/week (there are many services that do this now).
Unfortunately, if you do not start doing this type of dinner prep, you are not likely to make great nutritional choices for you and your family. And as they get older, I feel like the schedule just gets more crazy. So, don’t wait and think it will slow down anytime soon.
Empower yourself next week by PLANNING ahead! Not only will you feel better from eating healthy food, but you also have less stress when you are not always flying by the seat of your pants!
Here are some of my GO TO meals on SPORTS NIGHTS!
- Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili! A family favorite. Throw it all in the crock pot and it’s ready after practice! Check it out on the ETBs Favorite Recipe’s Pinterest Board at CLICK HERE!
- Chili: Most chili recipes can be made during the day in one big pot! Put it all in and let it cook for the hour. Then, you just heat it up when you get home! Make sure you prep a salad that is ready to go!
- Tuna Salad Night: This is a weekly meal in our house. I prepare a tuna salad during the day. When we get home from swim, I throw the tuna salad on a bed of lettuce and usually serve with a whole grain bread on the side. Easy and ready to serve the moment we get home! Tuna Recipe in the Eat By Example 1 Week Meal Plan. Check it out at CLICK HERE!
Hope these tips help you! And I would say this quote pretty much sums it up for sport nights: “Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail!” So, start planning and I know you will be successful!
For more details on this topic, check out the Earn That Body Podcast Episode on this very topic! Click Here for Podcast Episode!