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Barbell Logic

May 31, 2022

How do you end your cooking rut? What do you do when your go-to foods bore you? Niki Sims & Nikki Burman have tips & tricks to re-energize your cooking & meal preparation, so you don't turn to unhealthy, convenience foods that take you away from your goals.

End Your Cooking Rut

It’s easy to grow sick of the same meals, get burnt out by cooking, meal preparation, grocery shopping, and all the other steps (including eating) that go into healthy, sustainable nutrition.

Tackle this thorny issue from both sides: remember your goals & enliven the steps to crush your goals.

Remember Your Goals – Know Your Why

What are your nutrition goals and why do they matter to you? Reminding yourself of why you’re cooking, preparing meals, and eating healthy foods matters. Ruts happen. Don’t forget why you’re doing this in the first place.

Nikki enjoys seeing her family happy & healthy. The physical manifestation of her goals is her family, so she not only looks toward her personal goals but her loved ones for motivation.

Taking time to write your goals, post them, and investigate why they matter helps.

Now, on to reenergizing meal preparation.

Find New Recipes

Finding new recipes can reenergize your nutrition, but doing this requires work (find the recipe, purchase the food, try it out, see if people like it).

Unless you absolutely love trying new recipes, look for simpler recipes. Look at the ingredient list and the number of steps. Double-check that you’re comfortable with the cooking options (if it requires an air fryer and you don’t have one, move on).

Beyond finding all new recipes, you can tweak go-to recipes to make them fresh and prevent boredom. Try cooking vegetables or meat, for example, with a different method (if you typically roast, try the air fryer or grill them).

Change out meats and vegetables to find a different flavor profile. The basics of the recipe will remain, but the result will taste much different.

Vary the spices and see what works and what you like.

Make Cooking Fun

If you’re cooking for your family, make it a family event. Have your family join you, so you don’t feel like you’re sacrificing family time for food time. This is also a great way to teach your family how to cook and what is involved in making healthy food.

If you’re meal prepping for yourself, listen to music or your favorite podcast. Have it be – like training time – a time away from work and that is all about you and moving toward your goals.

Preparation & Planning

Have healthy meats & veggies frozen & on-hand. Maintain a well-stocked spice cabinet. Keep necessary & go-to sauces in your refrigerator.

If you made too much of something, freeze part of it so you have a ready-to-go meal.

Schedule your grocery shopping. This might mean having it delivered to your house, delivered to the car, or going in yourself, but ensure you have your grocery list complete & ensure the time works for you and your family.

Don’t Fear Failure

You might make something that doesn’t go over well. That’s okay. You’ll make more food that is tasty and healthy, and you’ll occasionally find a new favorite dish that you’ll want to make for and share with others.

Experiment and try new things. If you’re sick of eggs, try overnight oats, recipes with greek yogurt, or cottage cheese and fruit.

Try breakfast for dinner (or dinner for breakfast).

Ultimately, if you’re dreading eating your prepared food, lower compliance is likely to arise. Lower compliance means moving away from your goals. Notice this early and try some new recipes or new ways of cooking now before you’re noticing metrics shifting in an undesired direction.

Let us know if you have some other ideas to end your cooking rut and reenergize meal preparation!

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