“So I’m taking baby steps in the right direction, but I’m having trouble seeing what a coherent healthy eating plan looks like.”
“I’m so busy – how do you guys fit healthy eating in?”
“If I knew where you lived I’d creepily stare in your front window and write down what you eat. Since I don’t, I’ll settle for reading about your weekly routine.”
Us humans really like to see what other people are doing. All the time. We’re always measuring ourselves to others to see if we’re better.
It’s like when you start lifting weights at the gym and realize that EVERYONE is doing more weight than you – so you look around until you find that one person.
You know who I’m talking about.
That one guy or girl doing 8 million curls with like 5 pounds.
Success! You’ve beaten one person!
I’m guessing part of the reason you read this blog is to see how a couple of young, normal (probably not) people go about eating real foods. Do we spend a bajillion hours a week cooking 21 meals? How do we fit in baking bread, pizza dough, and hamburger buns? Does our life revolve around taking care of kefir, sourdough, and kombucha like they were our children?
I’m totally and unhealthily captivated when other health bloggers share their habits and rituals. It’s my measuring stick for how good I’m doing. Like when I read that XYZ blogger eats out only twice a year, I was bug-out eyes impressed.
It’s flippin’ hard to establish a healthy eating routine because DONUTS and PIZZA and COSTCO CHOCOLATE CAKE.
That’s why it’s totally cool to see how someone who’s found a routine navigates the pitfalls of delicious junk food. I like to see how often they cheat, what a normal breakfast looks like, and how many meals they eat per day.
I know I’m weird.
Anyway, here’s what an IDEAL healthy weekly menu looks like for me and Erin:
Strict Routine During the Week
I do MUCH better diet-wise when I have all-or-nothing rules. I have to have my cheat times clearly defined and not slip up.
If I have a donut Tuesday morning, I’m MUCH more likely to want to eat out for dinner. It’s a stupid mentality thing, like since I’ve already cheated that it doesn’t matter if I keep cheating. It doesn’t make sense, but if you’re nodding your head along with what I’m saying, then you’d do well to set aside part of the week for “perfect” eating. That’s us Monday – Friday (hopefully!).
Party on the Weekend!
It’s the freakin’ weekend baby, I’m about to have me some fun.
We plan for our cheat meal like celebrities plan for the Oscars. We make it a big deal ‘round here so that we remember to be good during the week. We’ll try to make it fun, too, like getting a babysitter (thanks Mom!) and hitting the movies after dinner or taking a pizza to the park.
Or, we go drive-thru at the closest place, park, and stuff it in our faces like a starving man who’s been handed an apple. Just kidding! (Or am I…)
Then we’re a little more diet-relaxed on Sunday night, partially because we’re with the fam and want to have a good, laid-back time. I mean who can pass up dessert that’s amazing brownies?!
Our weekend breakfasts are muy grande, but we’ll have something like sourdough pancakes with real maple syrup and other healthy ingredients.
The key to our eating success can easily be attributed to having set cheat times. Relaxing a bit on the weekend makes sense for our social lives, too.
How Do You Pick Your All Important Cheat Meal?
I eat anything that happens to be in arms’ reach. I’ll plan all week to use my cheat for some schmancy restaurant date and then end up grabbing a Little Caesar’s bacon-crusted deep dish pizza. The heart wants what it wants.
“Honey, I’m home with a bacon-crusted pizza again!”
*Erin walks out, all dressed up ready for a hot date.*
*Gives me look of death.*
Why 2 pm Lunch?
Eating a later lunch is something I picked up recently. I hit the gym every day around 4, and a recent meal gives me a pick-me-up.
Also, I’m less hungry for dinner because I’ve eaten 2 hours more recently than my previous noontime lunches. I’m less likely to pig out because I feel fuller sooner.
I don’t have a scientific backing for why I do this, just that I like it. Do what you want and is convenient.
I’m completely convinced that juicing is the most effective way to flush toxins, manage your weight, and heal your gut.
In the past, I’ve done full 7-day cleanses and absolutely loved how I felt and looked afterwards. Doing a cleanse one day a week keeps out the cobwebs – like taking your car in for maintenance. It’s also been the best weight management tool I’ve ever used.
Plus, juices are so nutrient-rich that your body can jump-start healing whatever’s wrong with it. If you’re someone with a chronic ailment, juicing can help you manage or even begin healing that sickness.
In fact, it’s such an important part of what I do that Erin and I are creating an entire juicing eBook/program. If you jump on our email list, we’ll let you know when it’s ready (plus you’ll get our free recipe book right away).
What’s in a Crazy Hippie Smoothie?
Our preferred ingredients:
- Fermented Cod Liver Oil
- Organic Spinach
- Organic Frozen Berries
- Grass-fed Gelatin
Altogether, it tastes pretty great. It’s also probably the healthiest concoction known to man. It recharges like Superman flying up near the sun.
Start your day off with one of these bad boys and you’re setting a strong foundation for the day.
How Do We Have The Time?
We’re busy people – I work a 9 to 5, Erin takes care of Little Dude, we run this blog, and we both go to the gym.
The secret is that we only cook 1 meal per day. Breakfast requires pouring a few things in a blender (or frying eggs, which takes 3 minutes), and for lunch we have leftovers. If we don’t have leftovers, it’s a salad, toast with peanut butter, or something else uber quick.
We’re not whipping up gourmet meals left and right here at the ERSS household.
You wanna know a secret?
Erin hates to cook. Yes, I know, she’s food blogger. Who hates to cook.
After I finish up at the gym (which is after I finish my 9 to 5), I come home and whip something up. With our weekly meal plan in place, I already know what needs to be done.
If it’s a crock pot meal, I fire it up before I take off in the morning. I know, I’m amazing.
When we need to make extras (condiments, bread, probiotics, etc.) we both just pitch in probably one night a week and whip some stuff up. Saturdays and Sundays are good for this too.
At first, we’d forget that we need to get our Sourdough out a few days before, or that I needed to make a batch of breadcrumbs for dinner later in the week.
Now? It’s second nature. I meal plan for the week, and I make a shopping list. I also make a mental list of things I need to make, like chicken broth or salsa. Once this stuff becomes habit, you won’t feel like all your time is in the kitchen because you’ll get efficient at it.
If I spend more than 5-6 hours in the kitchen for the entire week, I’d be shocked. Erin spends a couple hours too.
If that seems like a lot, remember one of my favorite mottos:
“Anything in life worth doing requires effort.”
If eating healthy is a priority for you – and since you’re reading this blog, I’m guessing it is – then carve out a little time for it instead of watching a few minutes of Netflix.
What’s Your Weekly Routine?
“Do the best you can with what you have.”
We’ve taken that on as a motto here at ERSS.
What do we mean by it?
It means that if you’re someone who travels 5 days a week and live out of hotels, you probably can’t do the routine we do.
Or, you’ve got 4 little kids and you can’t rip apart their routine without detonating some serious meltdowns in your house.
It’s ok. That motto means that we do what we can, and we’re alright with it. You physically might not have the time to take care of sourdough, kombucha, and kefir.
*NOTE* There’s a 99% chance you DO have the time – make sure these are LEGITIMATE reasons and not wimpy excuses.
But, you’ll be insanely happy with the benefits of a healthy eating routine – you’ll have the energy to play with your kids.
You’ll feel more disciplined, like you have an unbreakable iron will and the choice to be lazy or productive will be easier to make.
Your weekly routine should like the one that you can do. Don’t make it too easy – no one ever saw results by sticking to what makes them comfy. Push yourself. Give your routine an honest assessment:
Will it push you beyond what’s easy?
Will it begin producing the results you want?
Will your discipline and will be pushed closer to your limits?
If your routine is basically “keep everything the same but take out 1 donut,” that’s better than nothing. But, I know you can do more. Does Batman’s routine look comfortable? That’s why he’s the Dark Knight.
Anyway, I’ve seriously given you WAAAY more info than you ever cared about… so let’s wrap this up!
What does your weekly healthy routine look like?