Children, career and new opportunities are usually the main priorities in life. Living a healthy lifestyle tend to become a secondary concern in the hectic pace of life. Sometimes it gets so busy at work, you barely have time to run down to the cafeteria in a bid to grab the quickest and easiest thing to eat before getting back to work.
Even at home, you can be so exhausted that you just order the standard takeout. This will eventually take a toll on your health causing a loss of energy, weight gain or both. Below are 22 ways you can stay eating healthy on a busy schedule.
Ways To Eating Healthy On a Busy Schedule
1. Be Consistent
When it comes to our health, consistency is a necessity. There is a direct correlation between consistency and simplicity as it relates to diet and exercise. Entrepreneurs and other career-oriented folks lead busy lives. So, it’s important to have a simple routine that’s also efficient during work days. Consistency is the key to living a wholesome life.
2. Meal Prep on the Weekend
Save some time during the week through meal prep. I like to do all my grocery shopping on Saturday. Then, I cook and put together meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) on Sunday to last all week long. For example, if you like making smoothies in the morning, put together 5-6 smoothie packs and keep in the freezer until ready to blend. It will take roughly five minutes to put prepare your smoothie each time.
3. Pre-package Your Smoothies
In my house, we make tons of smoothie packs every week. Smoothies provide a remarkable way of using minimal effort to fill up on tons of wholesome nutrients.
To simplify the process, I freeze all my fruits and veggies together in a zipper bag. I’ll then prepare little single use baggies for dry ingredients like chia seeds, flax seeds, protein powder and leave them in the pantry. When I’m ready, I just grab the bag from the freezer, the dry ingredients from the panty and pour all the contents into the blender. The only thing left is the liquid which I just measure in a cup and throw in the blender.
When meal prepping smoothies, prepare a bag for the number of smoothies you plan to have for the week.
4. The Crockpot is Your BFF
Don’t have to create a meal for the whole family? This magical, multi-tasking tool will be your new BFF. All you have to do is combine ingredients in advance and cook your meal while you’re away. It’s really a busy person’s dream come true.
5. Eat Meals Rather Than Snacking Throughout the Day
When your schedule is crazy, it often feels like no time is there to sit down for a full meal. It usually seems easier to eat a yogurt here, a couple handfuls of almonds there and a bag of chips between meetings. People who snack all day typically end up eating more calories than others who eat full meals. Find healthier on-the-go choices like pre-prepared meals from home.
6. Increase Your Consumption of Veggies
Greens are a very common addition to smoothies. However, there are far other ways to sneak in veggies into your meals. These can include cauliflower in your scrambled eggs or zucchini in your bran muffins. Whether giving your mac and cheese a healthy makeover or you are baking dessert, sneaking veggies into otherwise ordinary meals is a smart and delicious way to go.
7. Have a Stash of Healthy Snacks
Delays and changes in schedule are unavoidable; this sometimes means your lunch period can totally disappear. Grabbing a burger is not necessarily a bad choice every now and then; however, it is healthier to have an emergency snack supply on hand. This could include kale chips, granola bars, mixed nuts and unsweetened dried fruit.
8. Boost Up Your Protein Intake
When hunger strikes, it is easy to go for a less than healthy option to quickly address the hunger pangs. However, even quick snacks like potato chips will not do a dent on your hunger. Avoid the urge to load up snacks by consuming high-protein meals instead as they’ll keep satisfied for a few more hours.
9. Choose Fruits Over Store-bought Juice
Store-bought fruit juice versions typically have little or no nutritional value and are chock full of hidden sugars. Have some apples, oranges, bananas or other preferred fruits on hand and drink some water for your hydration.
10. Outsmart the Menus
When ordering in or eating out, it is easy to opt for the unhealthiest and most delicious menu item. While treating yourself, use tactics that assist you in keeping on track with your nutrition goals. Before ordering, go online and see the menu first so you can find healthier options. Go for meals that has at least one veggie-based meal and is served with lean protein. This will give allowance for a reasonable serving of dessert, if you like.
11. Develop a Routine and Use it to Prioritize
Investing in your personal life is vital and should be made a priority. Choose a window of time during the day to pour into yourself. This can be done by deciding to begin your day either at the gym, going for a run or doing some home-based physical activities. This can really set the tone for the remaining portion of the day. A lot of people have tried to work fitness into their day and it never happens. Therefore, it is important to be intentional about increasing your physical activities.
12. Become a Part of a Sports Team
Not only are team sports an amazing form of exercise but they provide a remarkable way to stay accountable as well. When life gets busy, working out by yourself can be easily placed on the back burner because no one will notice when you don’t show up. Becoming a part of a sports team will allow you to exercise and have accountability.
13. Work Out Every Day at the Same Time
When your workout, stick to the same time everyday. Your body will get used to an activity, when it gets on a schedule and the routine will be easy to follow. Additionally, your body will become used to exercising so you will be able to maximize its effect and get it in peak physical condition.
14. Commit to Shorter, More Frequent Workouts
If it feels impossible to squeeze a 1 hour workout into a hectic work agenda, try shorter workouts instead. You can benefit from 15 or 30 minutes of a workout if you decide to take the time in between work projects or meetings. You don’t even have to go to the gym or change your clothes. You can remain active throughout the day with short but frequent exercises like going for a walk during your lunch break or going up and down the stairs. You can even try parking far away from your office so you can walk a longer distance.
15. Rent a Locker at the Gym
Leaving gym clothes or sneakers at home one morning are common reasons people skip the gym and if you do it frequently, a few missed days can turn into a long absence. To prevent this, you should consider renting a gym locker. Though this is an added expense, it takes away the excuses and could also assist in preventing the lugging around of your gym bag.
16. Get Up and Move
The average office job requires sitting at a desk for most of the day. Add in transportation to and from work, and sitting down for dinner and you will be sitting for 70 percent of the average workday. Get active by taking the stairs, running errands on foot, getting off the subway a stop away or parking farther away from your destination. These extra steps can really add up over time.
17. Do Full-body Exercises
Since time is of the essence, commit to a routine that targets the whole body rather than a single area. Some of my favorites include kettlebells, jumping rope, squats, cycling and push-ups. Swimming is also another alternative to get in a full body workout.
18. Change Up Your Workouts
If your workout regimen has become boring, overtime you’ll make less trips to the gym. Keep the interest up by trying out various workouts and classes. If your go-to is walking on the treadmill, try doing a HIIT class. If weight training has been your preference, challenge your muscles with Pilates. A great way to keep yourself accountable is to sign up for a class.
19. Work on Stress Reduction
Unmanaged stress can have a debilitating impact on your health; as such, it is vital that you take steps to address it as soon as you notice its impact. Try these awesome stress reducers like going outside to get some fresh air, walking around the block or doing a few quick stretches.
20. Drink Plenty of Water
In general, we don’t drink an adequate amount of water on a daily basis and busy individuals drink even less. When working in an air conditioned office in front of a computer, it is harder to feel the effects of dehydration and this contributes to the inadequate consumption of water. To remedy this situation, you should consider buying a refillable bottle and commit to filling it up every time it’s empty. You will be surprised at how much it helps you to think and how it makes you feel overall.
21. Take a Vacation
Give yourself permission to rest, refresh and relax. If a vacation helps you do just that, then do it. Make time for self care and I promise you will feel healthier, happier and more productive when you get back to work.
22. Focus on Restful Sleep
Your sleeping habits are directly impacted by how busy you are during the day. When your brain remains active when you lie in your bed, this will result in lower-quality sleep. In spite of how busy you may be during the day, ensure you have a nightly routine that assists you in slowing down and transitioning into a restful sleep.
How do you stay eating healthy on a busy schedule? Share your thoughts by commenting below!