We’re at the beginning of week four on this recommitment phase. Things continue to progress quite nicely. I don’t think I could say that though, if it weren’t for the way I’ve been SNACKING.
Yep, just when you think snacking is what’s bringing you down, it’s what’s making me successful.
Keep in mind, mindless snacking is something that can derail anyone on a healthy eating journey… the key is to have planned, calculated snacking.
I’ve got three different strategies that I employ when it comes to snacking that I’m going to share with you… certain to help you to make snacking more strategic, and keep you off the defensive.
Plan, Plan, Plan
This sounds obvious, but you have to plan for your snacks. Just like you plan your meals, you have to plan what you’re going to munch on. You’re going to get hungry in-between these perfect meals you’ve got in your head.
- Stock up at the Grocery Store: Make sure you have enough produce on hand to support your snacking for the week. You can’t plan on eating fruit every day, if you only bought two apples. Sounds obvious, but it’s an area where I was missing for a long time… plan it out!
- Portion-Ready Items Make Life Easy: In the morning, I can barely get out of the house, let alone make decisions. I need food that’s ready to go and easy to pack. I recommend you either prep your food over the weekend into portion-sized bags, or pack items that can be prepared at work. Example: I pack a bell pepper and a knife, and then cut it up at work while I’m on a conference call.
Packing It Up
When I head out for the day, I need to have a few snacks on hand, as well as lunch.
- Pack Something Savory, Something Sweet: I make sure that my snack bag has a little bit of both. My sweets usual come from the fruit family, and I count on veggies to help me through with the savory/salty needs.
- Pack Something that Makes You Feel Normal: Yes, a healthy eating plan is “normal”, but I always try to pack something that doesn’t seem like rabbit food. Lately for me, that’s been a Jenny Craig Peanut Butter Anytime Bar – – Because they are awesome and feel like a treat! The stats work right into my plan, and I don’t feel guilty when I eat them.
- NTTC Picks: Fiber One Bars, Pirate’s Booty, Right Bites 100 Calorie Cheez It Mix, Special K Salted Pretzel Chocolate Bar
Handling Hunger Emergencies
Even the best laid plans can be foiled by hunger showing up at just the wrong time. When you’re on your way to Target and you get so stinkin’ hungry you don’t know what to do… it’s happened to you too. Right?
Well, I have some stops that I make to curb these emergency moments… in a way that doesn’t completely derail my process. There are some fast food options below. Now, I don’t recommend fast food on a regular basis by any means, but when you want something and need something urgent… these stops can help.
- Starbucks – Banana + Venti Ice Water (I had this over the weekend), Kind Bar, Tall Skinny Mocha (110 calories), fruit cup
- McDonalds – Side Salad with Lite Italian Dressing (70 calories), Vanilla Cone (150 calories)
- Subway – Apple slices, Baked Lays
- 7 Eleven – This place always surprises me. There are so many fresh fruit options and healthy bar options. The stock varies by store, but I can always find something to munch on here if emergency strikes.
- Grocery Stores – If you can find a Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, or your favorite grocery store, go there! And, head to produce… lots of grab and go options.
Hydration on the Go
Picture it. You’re driving around town, and your stomach begins to growl. You know that you can’t possibly be hungry, and that it’s probably just thirst. What to do?
Well, you can fill up your water bottle at any gas station or Starbucks. I’ve done this a million times. Walking in, needing nothing but water…
PS… Starbucks will also hook you up with a free venti ice water. Their triple-filtered water hits the spot, and with that green straw, if you’re anything like me, you’ll probably drink extra water.
So… now you know my snacking secrets. What would you add to my list? What tips do you have to share?