If you ever wondered why it’s hard to lose weight, consider:

As it turns out, it’s not easy being lean. Yes, losing weight is hard work, but maintaining the loss is the most difficult yet. Here are 12 ways meal planning can tip the scales in your favor.

Meal Planning Help

  1. Plan your meals weekly: Don’t open the fridge doors and stare in helpless wonder. Write out a menu plan for the week. You don’t need to detail every last carrot stick you nibble one, but do know how much protein you’re shooting for. Take meals to work and avoid the office vending machine and take-out menus, too.
  2. Shop efficiently: Learn the grocery store layout so you aren’t left wandering the aisles aimlessly. Take enough time to read labels and understand fat, calories and sodium values per serving, not just totals for the entire package.
  3. Make a list and stick to it: Once you plan your weekly menus, you’ll have your basic shopping list. Stick to it. Don’t deviate.
  4. Don’t buy just because it’s on sale: You may have coupons. The kids may begin begging. Don’t cave in! Low prices are not always a bargain for your body. And if the kids think a tantrum decides the matter, let them know before you go inside that good behavior reaps a (non-food) reward, while poor behavior results in nada.
  5. Shop fresh and seasonal: Fresh produce in Kansas City is always available, though the time of year determines the price. Check this website to determine what’s good throughout the year.
  6. Look at farmer’s markets for local food: You get the freshest and locally sourced food from your neighbors, so get those extra steps in by walking around the market and making new friends. You can even find home delivery services from local farms!
  7. Is the “meal in a box” a good weight-loss plan? For quick preparation without temptation, the delivered boxed meal is acceptable—on occasion. The pros? You won’t have leftovers and all the ingredients are there for you. The cons? You won’t have the same choices as you would if you planned your meals out in advance, and you’ll learn nothing about proper food choices. Plus, it can be expensive if you eat them daily.
  8. Consider “ethnic” foods: Nontraditional “ethnic” markets offer new and unique foods, often available in small quantities. If you’re wondering how to use bok choy, tamarind, starfruit or sea beans, ask the shop owner and look for recipes on your mobile phone. There are lots of delicious meals out there!
  9. It’s not just the food: Altering your eating habits may work for a while, but as weight loss slows, you need to add exercise to the program. For healthy weight maintenance, you’ll need to adjust how you manage your life, not just calories. Seek out a personal trainer in Olathe, or become a member of our SunPoint Fitness gym!
  10. Keep meal preparation simple and fast: Spend less time in the kitchen and use fewer ingredients; doing so means less nibbling and sampling, which gives you more time to exercise.
  11. Make extra food for freezing: Cook in bulk and freeze your leftovers. Those days when you are too busy to cook, just grab a frozen meal, heat it in the microwave, and devour.
  12. Get help from the experts: Contact SunPoint Fitness for one-on-one personal training, common-sense meal planning, and supplement guidance. Our Olathe gym staff offers help with meal preparation, teaches individual and group workouts for beginners, and assists in choosing the ideal high-grade supplements for your workout routines. Call us today at (913) 267-5348 or visit our Olathe personal trainers at 15280 S. Keeler Street to become a member.