Sunday, March 9, 2008

Weekly Menus

Appraising Your Success

The end of the week is a good time to review the past week of your SWEET Life and count up your accomplishments. Your goal is 5-6 times per week for each aspect of the SWEET Life: Sleep, Water, Eating, Exercise, and Tranquility. If you didn’t achieve some of your goals for the week, then next week, focus on those areas more and think about how to fulfill them more consistently.
How do you feel at the end of this week? Are you better rested? Do you feel relaxed? Are you more energetic? Do you feel generally healthier? Continue with the SWEET Life and you’ll experience all of these feelings!

Topic of the week -- Weekly menus

Spending half an hour a week planning your menus for the next week is a great way to eat healthier all week long. I start with two pieces of paper: one for dinner menus and one for groceries. The following is what works for me:
1. I write the days of the week, spaced out, down the left side of the paper.
2. I write any plans I already have that will affect dinner next to the days they will occur.
3. Of the days without plans, I pick three days when I will cook dinner.
4. I choose two days when we will have leftovers.
5. I choose two days when I will cook something quick & easy, like frozen meals, boxed or packaged meals, or pasta served with jarred sauce.
6. I check my pantry, fridge and freezer for what dinner foods I already have, such as frozen meat, frozen dinners, rice, potatoes, pasta, etc.
7. From there, I start to fill in my menus of what quick & easy foods I could make. If I don’t have much, then I add some quick & easy meals to my grocery list.
8. Using what foods I already have as a start, I decide what meals I will cook this week. I make sure my dinners include protein, grains and vegetables. Adding dairy and/or fruit is a bonus.
9. In addition to writing my cooking menus on my menus paper, I add whatever ingredients I will need to my grocery list.
10. To my grocery list I also add any breakfast, lunch or snack foods we need.

I don’t get around to doing this every week, but when I do, my entire week runs more smoothly. I never wonder what we’ll have for dinner tonight, and my family eats healthier all week long.

Have a SWEET week!


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