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Not really sure why your diet seems so hard to stick to? Or why you aren’t seeing steady results? It could be because of your lack of time in the Kitchen.

There is one thing that I want y’all to be aware of that could be killing your diet progress — NOT cooking your own meals. This seems obvious, but it’s easier said than done. In this fast-paced society where everyone has a million things to do before, during and after work, nobody’s got time for that.

I mean come on, who has time to cook anything while we are being superwomen to our families and loved ones? It is super hard sometimes. But, if we don’t find the balance, we may never get closer to our quest of being our fittest, most beautiful selves.

Fast Food — Your Kryptonite

Several studies show that we overeat by as much as 500 calories, on average, when we eat out at restaurants as compared to when we cook at home. 500 calories may sound like a lot, but when you look at the typical fast food or restaurant options, it’s easy to hit 500 calories without even buying a soft drink or fries. The typical menu choices are high in fat and carbs, and don’t provide a lot of protein.

This is how those sneaky little calories hide out, ready to destroy your progress at a moment’s notice. On a typical 1 lb per week weight loss plan, if you were to eat out 3 times a week, you would go from losing 1 lb down to 0.5 lb that week. That quick lunch you grab when you’re in a hurry may seem like just one heavy meal, but the calories add up, and we need to shed as much fat as we can.

Making Food At Home — Your Superpower

The only way to make your diet work is if you know everything you’re eating. That means doing some home cooking. So, to give yourself every possible advantage on your fitness journey, you’ll need to do some planning for the week. Since our superpowers don’t allow us to add extra hours to the day, we’ll need to FIND TIME to play in the kitchen.

1. Take the time to analyze your weekly schedule and create your food plan — You’re likely eating out because you feel rushed or like you have no time. Take a few minutes every week to look at all your commitments — work, school, kids’ activities, gym, etc. You need to gameplan when and how you’re going to get all your required nutrients. By doing this, you’ll ultimately save yourself time, because you’ll be prepared. This also allows you to minimize any hiccups and cuts out 80% of your diet excuses. If you know what is going on throughout the week, then you should be able to plan for these things ahead of time. Of course, things come up and your lifestyle might make it hard to plan ahead. If this happens to you, it can be helpful to create a personal food log to keep track of what you’re eating.

2. Meal prep ahead of time as much as possible — I know that cooking is time-consuming and not always fun, but you can save some of that time by cooking your meals, or parts of your meals like chicken breasts, in advance. Depending on your schedule, you might even be able to make a whole bunch of food once or twice a week, and have days’ worth of meals ready to go. For me, I like to pre-cook some of my protein choices on Sundays & Wednesdays. This allows me to have fresher cooked meats, and only focus on keeping fresh veggies and carb sources on deck as I go through my week.

No need to slave in the kitchen all week long. Regardless of whether you’re prepping daily, semi-weekly or weekly, the point is that failing to prepare is preparing to fail. Besides, having food already prepared is a great incentive to actually eat it. I don’t know about you, but I hate wasting food that I worked hard to fix. So bottoms up!

3. Mix up your flavor profiles — We understand that when it comes to eating healthy, the main choices are lean chicken, turkey, seafood, veggies & whole grain carbs. Right? So what can you do to break the monotony? How can we keep it interesting?

Try throwing some variety into your flavor profile. Although what you’re eating may not be an artisanal Mediterranean, Mexican or Asian Fusion meal, that doesn’t mean that you can’t make it taste like one. Garlic, pepper and onions are all healthy ways to kick your meal up a notch, but there’s no need to stop there. There are tons of spices, seasonings, flavorings, marinades and condiments that are macro-friendly and can add some life to that plain slab of meat, sweet potato and seemingly endless portions of veggies.

You’ll Marvel at the Results

Now, nothing I say can make cooking any more fun or entertaining. But hopefully, you understand the importance of cooking your own meals and are able to plan a little bit better. All that I TRULY want for you is SUCCESS with your BODY. The only way to get what I really want is to make sure that all of my girls are educated and prepared to live a fit lifestyle with all the obstacles the real world throws our way.

So ladies, in order to beat the gut and keep that butt that you are working so hard for, keep these things in mind: plan, prep, and pop in some flavor. Do that, and with plenty of exercise, you’ll look and feel like a superhero.

See you in the gym!

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