You may have decided to start taking care of your health and eating better, but if your kitchen is not set up for success, you are likely to struggle. You need a kitchen space that supports your goals and makes it easier to achieve results.
Strategies to Makeover Your Kitchen
If there are food or drink items that tempt you and cause you to stumble, get them out of your house and work environments. I’m not suggesting that you can never consume those items, just make it harder to access them. This forces you to question whether you really want to leave the house to curb the craving. Typical items that should not be stored in your house include chips, pastries, ice cream, sweet treats, any type of high calorie, low nutritional value snack or food or any item that is your weakness.
Carve out time to grocery shop at least once to twice per week. Have a plan for what meals you will make throughout the week. Make a grocery list of all the items you need to purchase to create healthy meals and to achieve your health and fitness goals. Spend most of your time in the produce area and around the perimeter of the store. Minimize purchasing processed food items. As soon as you get home, take the time to clean, chop and prep. Allocate time during the week to shop to stock up on fruits and veggies as needed. One other caution – studies show that when you buy in bulk, you eat in bulk. So it’s better to shop more often than to purchase a huge amount of food all at once.
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Strategize Your Storage
If there are certain items that you want to consume more, have them at eye level and easily accessible. For example, store fruit and veggies in glass containers at the front of the fridge so they are the first thing you see when you’re hungry. If you want to start the day with lemon water, have the lemons positioned in a bowl in the front of the fridge. If there are other items that you want to eat less and haven’t purged from your house, have them out of sight.
Place the less desirable food items at the back of the fridge, behind other items in the pantry, on the highest shelve or in a different area of the house. If you want to drink less alcohol, place bottles in the garage or an area of the house you don’t frequent often. Get the alcohol and other tempting foods out of your main fridge or cupboards that you access daily. Out of sight, out of mind really does work when it comes to making better nutrition choices.
Tools to Success
What don’t you currently have in your kitchen that could help you succeed with your health and fitness goals? Perhaps you would like to purchase a good juicer or a spiralizer so you can make veggie pasta. Maybe you’d like to invest in an instapot or air fryer. You may consider purchasing a food scale so you can learn proper portion sizing. Are there certain spices you want to stock up on? Do you need to purchase a large-sized hydro-flask water bottle to increase your hydration? Start to make a list and purchase items as you can.
Take some time on Sunday evening to prepare for the week. Cook a healthy dish that can be your go-to during the week. Clean your fruit and veggies so you can grab n’ go. Cut your veggies and place them into snack bags so they are ready each day. Have single size hummus containers to dip your veggies. Prepare hard-boiled eggs for the week. Create 100-150 calorie snack bags with correct portions of nuts, jerky, energy balls etc.
Declutter Your Space
A messy, cluttered kitchen can sometimes make your life feel less organized and chaotic. This can sometimes lead to poorer choices or a desire for less healthy, comfort foods. So, take a day and clean your kitchen.
Clear off the countertops and go through your shelves deciding what you will keep, donate or throw away.
Donate items you never use or that don’t serve your goals.
Throw away expired or broken items.
Get rid of the unmatching lids and containers.
Place the items you use regularly in an easy to access area.
If you want to do more juicing, keep your juicer right on the countertop.
Place a bowl of fruit in plain sight so you can grab a piece if you get the munchies.
If you’re trying to learn appropriate portion sizes, place your food scale out in the open.
If you want to make more Instapot, Crockpot or Air Fryer meals, place those items on the counter.
Have your cutting boards and knives easily accessible for cutting and chopping fruits and veggies.
In contrast, place the ice cream maker and baking tools out of sight, so you’re less likely to use those items everyday.
Organize your kitchen so you feel great when you are in it and are less likely to succumb to choices that don’t serve your overall ambitions.
Inspiration in Your Space
Make or purchase some inspirational signs that you post throughout your kitchen and on your appliances that remind you of your goals and how strong you are. Don’t underestimate the power of words when you’re feeling vulnerable.
Consider hiring a trainer or nutritionist to go through this process with you. It may be a game changer and you’ll learn a ton!
Yours in health & fitness,