What Does a Weekend of Intuitive Eating Look Like?

Since I’ve been eating intuitively for a couple of months, I thought I’d share what I ate this past weekend. I’m pretty excited about how my progress has been going with intuitive eating, I’ve been a lot more conscious about when I’m hungry versus grabbing something because I’m bored and I haven’t been eating (as much) just to eat.

I also jumped on the scale just to see and I’m only about a pound up from when I stopped counting macros which is amazing considering I was eating a lot at the beginning just because I paying attention to my body cues as closely as I am now.

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Saturday

I ended up not having a protein smoothie after my five mile run, I had breakfast not too long before it and I wasn’t that hungry after my run so I just had a little bit earlier lunch after I was done with my run and grocery shopping. I did have an afternoon snack of a protein smoothie bowl with mini chocolate chips and coconut flakes. Dinner was later than usual since I took a long nap after the smoothie bowl but I wasn’t too hungry so it was on the lighter side (with lots of vegetables).

Breakfast: Oatmeal with mixed berries, egg whites and peanut butter plus coffee with creamer

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Lunch: Chicken Tikka Masala with Cauliflower and Peas over rice and lettuce mix with Bolthouse Dressing

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Snack: Smoothie bowl with berries, spinach, protein powder, mini chocolate chips and coconut flakes

Dinner: Scallops with Honey Ginger Glaze, brussel sprouts and lettuce mix with Bolthouse Dressing

Sunday

You can tell I had a bigger appetite after my 10 mile run, I had a lot more food throughout the day (including carbs) but I never felt stuffed or like I was eating because I was bored.

Breakfast: Oatmeal with strawberries, egg whites and peanut butter plus coffee with creamer

Post-run: Smoothie with mixed berries, protein powder and spinach

Lunch: Diced potatoes, bell pepper and egg whites with cheddar cheese and lettuce mix with Bolthouse Dressing

Snack: Plain Greek yogurt with orange marmalade mixed in

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Dinner: Garlic Roast beef with gravy, roasted potatoes and lettuce mix with Bolthouse Dressing

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How am I changing my eating post-marathon?

As I talked about in my post-marathon training plans, I’m cutting back my calories to try and lose the marathon weight. But at the same time, I want to be keeping (and hopefully putting on) muscle. So, what changes have I been making this past week to make them happen?

For one thing, I’ve been cutting way back on my snacking. That was the main thing I used during marathon training to get in more calories. So I’m keeping mainly to three meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) plus a pre- and post-workout snack on the days I’m working out. So not a lot of after dinner mug cakes anymore but I’ll still probably have one every once in awhile (on my rest day).

I’ve been surprised that cutting back how often and the amount of food I’m eating hasn’t left me feeling hungry. But, on the other hand, there was times during marathon that I felt stuffed trying to get in enough food to meet my caloric needs. This might change once I start working out regularly since the last week I didn’t work out as much as I will be. Instead of focusing on calorie dense foods to get in enough calories, I’ve been focusing on the volume of food I’ve been eating.

It is a lot more satisfying for me to dig into a giant salad than to eat a cup of rice as a side dish just to get in my carbs. I’ve actually found I’m eating more vegetables than I was during the marathon because I’m focusing on more voluminous meals. I’ve been having tons of spinach salads (with Botlhouse dress which is the best!) and having cauliflower rice (from frozen because I’m too lazy to make my own). Getting a lot more vegetables in probably means I’m eating more fiber which is also helping me feel more full.

One thing I have been missing is my giant bowl of oatmeal in the morning. I’ve cutback from 1 cup of uncooked oats to ½ cup and it makes a big difference. I’ve been adding in egg whites to add volume (and protein) and I’m going to experiment more with adding volume to my oatmeal with vegetables. Of course, I find I’m eating breakfast a lot quicker now since I have half the amount of food to eat. I have to time sit down and sip on my coffee now instead of chugging it down!

There’s going to be more trial and error coming still since I’ll get back to regular workout routine and then I’m going on my honeymoon but I’m feeling pretty good about all these changes so far!

How I Meal Plan

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I've written in the past that I meal plan to make it easier on myself during training cycles so I figured I should write-up how I meal plan. This is what is currently working for me based on my marathon training schedule and is flexible enough to change based on how the upcoming weeks look.

Once a Month: Plan Out Upcoming Meals

We do one big grocery shopping trip every four or five weeks (depending on if we spend time away and aren't cooking as much) to buy non-perishables for the upcoming weeks plus everything we'd need for the next week's meals. To prepare for this, I plan out upcoming meals on Google Calendar so I don't have to worry each week about what we are making. Plus, it's easy to move meals around when something else comes up and I can see at a glance what's coming up.

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I keep all my recipes in Evernote to make it easy to search through and plan out what meals we'll have for the upcoming weeks. It's also easy to add in new recipes using the Web Clipper extension and share out recipes with Mike when he's the one cooking. I use the Notebook feature to divide recipes by type and then when I pick out what we'll be cooking I tag it with the date of when I do a big grocery shopping trip. Easy to find what I'll be cooking either to make a grocery shopping list or cook the meal! If you aren't already using Evernote and want to try it out, I have a referral link that will get you a free trial of the Premium version.

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I pick out all the meals that look interesting (and that we haven't had in a while which is another place tagging recipes with a date comes in useful) first and then I plan when we are going to have them. Right now, we are cooking dinner on Sundays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays based on our work schedules and my training schedule.

I put the dishes that take longer to prepare or cook on the weekend, when Mike and I have more to devote to these meals. Tuesdays are Mike's day to work late so I plan on having something either in the pressure or slow cooker this day so I don't need to be as hands on since I'm running and taking care of Vinnie. Thursdays I still have a run but Mike is home so he'll usually start dinner while I'm doing my mobility and it's usually something easier that doesn't need to cook for more than 30 minutes.

Once a Month: Big Grocery Shopping Trip

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Once we have a meal plan ready, I go back through the recipes to create a shopping list for a big shopping trip. This one I divide out items by area in the store to make it easier to grab things (especially since we visit two stores to get the best deals while shopping).

What goes onto this list is everything for upcoming weeks that can be frozen or is canned/in a jar plus all the ingredients for the upcoming week's meals. We have staples that we get on almost every shopping trip (eggs, milk, yogurt, fruit/vegetable on sale) that round out our other meals for the week.

I eat breakfast at home every morning while Mike usually gets something at work and makes breakfast at home on the weekends. We eat leftovers or make simple wraps/sandwiches for lunches and dinners (if it's not a day we're cooking).

Weekly: Smaller Grocery Shopping Trip

Since we do one big grocery shopping trip, our weekly trips tend to be quicker and just replenishing our staples plus the perishable foods for the upcoming week. Depending on what is coming up for the week we can sometimes just go to Aldi to get everything but usually we go to Aldi and either Cub or Target (depending on whether we need paper/laundry products). Right now, I'm doing grocery shopping on Saturdays (after my run) and usually make it to Aldi right when they open so I can get in and out quickly.

Do you meal plan?