Today’s tip is planning related, intended to help with keeping yourself in control and on track of your diet.

Plan ahead
Very simple but so effective. On each weekend, set out a plan for the following week, the more detailed the better. Write down a list of daily breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks. Shop, cook, prepare and pack any meals that you can ahead of time. Come Sunday night, you should know what you are going to eat on Monday for all meals and you should have anywhere from a good idea to exactly what the rest of the week will hold foodwise. If you are going out to eat for lunch one day, figure that out ahead of time if possible, even down to what you want to order when you go. The empowerment you get from planning ahead is incredible.

Prepare and pack your meals the night before
If the best way to keep on your diet on track is to plan ahead, the next step is to preparing your food the night before. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and sometimes a snack or two should always be planned and preferably prepared and packed ahead. Personally, I’ll make my salad, cut up any meat, collect my fruit, bag up some snacks and use Tupperware to my advantage. When the next day arrives I know exactly what I am eating and there are very rarely any surprises or variance. If I make a “splurge” I can do it because I want to, not because I was being led into a bad choice by hunger or just not having any other options planned out.

Plan breakfast the night before
This has been a great way for me to simplify my morning routine. I plan my breakfast the night before, even down to getting the utensils and pan out and putting it on the stove. I will get the eggs, select the vegetables and meat and anything else I might want to throw in my omelet and put them next to one another in the fridge. Come morning time, there are no surprises (such as, “I’m out of eggs!”) and I’m off to the right start for the day.

Always have a back up plan
For me this means always having a few food items on hand that I can go to in a pinch if something comes up unexpectedly. Hit snooze an extra time or two? Know that you have some berries, nuts and coconut flakes to take with you in a pinch. I also carry a Larabar with me during most work days and a little bag of protein powder in case I am busy and don’t have time for my salad. I also know where I can get snacks during the day, I know exactly how I like to order if I end up dining at a restaurant and best of all, if worse comes to worse, I know that I can skip a meal with no repercussions if I have to. The end result is I am in control of my food, not at the mercy of hunger or indecision.

Regardless of the situation, always be prepared.

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