Menu plans pay off

Those who read my blog will know I dabble in a bit of healthy living and financial savings stuff (though I don’t really blog about the latter – I let the experts do that). One thing I have picked up over the years though is that menu planning is a great way to combine the two. Firstly you can plan the menu and therefore decide what is going to be eaten for the next week ahead including snacks. Secondly that is offset by monetary savings as you buy to a list, based on the menu plan. For me, because I plan my snacks as well, it saves me money on treats in the cafe. As I have 3 fabulous cafes to chose from in my workplace it’s important to not get to 3pm and not have something sorted. It’s too easy to go and buy a muffin/scone/cake/fudge. In fact sometimes worse than the cafes is the access to a fabulous pantry department that sells AMAZING food. (The Van H salted caramel chocolates spring to mind…).

Yes it’s hard being a foodie where I work sometimes. And I am a foodie. I love cooking, I even love the grocery shopping part. However it’s all about balance. My motto is “everything in moderation and chocolate every day!” I jest, to a degree. I do eat a lot of chocolate.

Sorry, I digress.

I am making a concerted effort to eat well at the moment. As it’s still very cold, exercise is still difficult for me, so the diet has to be main focus. However, on a cold night when you get home from a long day at work (it’s very busy and I have a lot going on) it’s very easy to just sink in to the couch and eat junk, not cook or buy takeaways. I stuck to my guns tonight though. I had planned to try a new recipe and had taken the chicken out of the freezer. So it was time to put the mini-oven on, put the meal on and within the hour I was eating a fabulous meal. I felt invigorated, re-energised and satisfied that I’d eaten something substantial, healthy and not succumbed to the easy option. If I hadn’t had a menu plan and known what I was going to do the job would have been twice as hard. I have been known to come home and ignore the defrosting meat and not cook (a BAD option, I know). This has often been because I only vaguely knew what I was going to cook. Perhaps because my day was stressful I made the concerted effort to do what was right, knowing I’d feel better, more rounded and mentally happier for following through. It’s a bit like going to yoga. The effort of getting there is hard, but it’s always worth it afterwards. On that note… I am going to yoga tomorrow after work. Yes that’s right. Friday night yoga. I’ve done it before when I’ve been unable to attend a Tuesday class and it is actually the best way to wind my week up. Let’s hope I’m still thinking that at 5.30pm tomorrow.

For those of you who like food porn – here’s a shot of my dinner tonight.

Happy menu planning!

Garlicky greens, potato gratin and grilled chicken

Garlicky greens, potato gratin and grilled chicken

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One response to “Menu plans pay off

  1. It would be extremely hard with 3x cafes at work! I struggle even just with the temptation of a school canteen. It’s so true that on a cold night it is really tempting to just sink into the couch. That meal looks fantastic. It always feels so rewarding *not* to succumb to the easy option. Unfortunately, I have not been organised with cooking / shopping of late…have to get back on the wagon.

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