We know that coming up with bodybuilding meal prep ideas can be difficult, especially when you think there just is not enough time in the day. Do you find yourself coming up with excuses to hit the drive through or phone a take away during the day? If so, you are not the only ones.
Well we want you to know, that this no longer has to be a problem. Our expert bodybuilding meal prep ideas will show you just how it can be done. And best of all! With little preparation time!
Up for discussion in this article are the following areas. We know you will benefit from these tips, so stay tuned and enjoy
- What does meal prep mean
- Reasons for prepping meals
- What ingredients to use
- Benefits of preparing your meals
- 6 Meal prep bodybuilding ideas
- Summary of bodybuilding meal prep ideas
If you are serious about your bodybuilding, weight loss or dieting, then you really need to make an effort. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be difficult, as we will show you. Think about all the effort you put into your training. Do you really want to let that all go to waste?
You work hard at developing and changing your body. So you deserve to know how to maintain a healthy diet through correct and effective meal preparation methods.
What does meal prep mean?
The simple part of this is what is says. Meal preparation. It is as simple as that. Preparing your meals. The tricky part however, is how do you effectively prepare your meals?
The mere thought of preparing your meals is daunting. Just think of preparing one meal to eat during the day. So many things start to convince you that you just don’t have the time. And that is for only one meal.
When it comes to the preparation of meals, the following should be taken into account:
- Planning your meals
- Shopping for the ingredients
- Preparing your meals
- Cooking your food
- And of course, packaging and storing of your meals
The idea behind preparing your meals, is that you can maintain consistency with your diet. Preparing your meals ahead of time will simplify your meals and save you time and money.
Everyone is different when it comes to eating and preparation requirements will vary. But for the most part, planning and cooking your meals ahead of time will be beneficial to you.
The great thing about preparing your meals is that you can do it for any one or all of your meals. Just remember, that meal prepping doesn’t have to be a boring and mundane task. Why not get your family or partner involved?
Reasons for prepping meals?
There are many reasons why one would want to prepare meals, but the most important would be to save time. Let us take a closer look at good reasons.
Keeping yourself on the right track
The main problem we all face is distractions and excuses. This is something that needs to be tackled head on. For example; realizing it is lunch time, but you only have 30 mins to get a meal. What is the first thing we think of? Time!
All of a sudden we don’t have enough time to prepare a meal. So what do we think next? A “light” lunch at Costa Coffee! Or there’s a “drive-thru” only a mile away.
It is these distractions that often lead us off the right path. By preparing meals ahead of time, you will eliminate these distractions and stay focused on your diet.
Think of the time you spend in the day exercising or working out. You have set aside time to go to the gym or do your home workout. This is a consistent approach to developing your muscles or aiding in your weight loss goals.
But as we all know, exercising is only a small part of the overall process. Dieting however, is the most fundamental and should not be taken lightly. Without the correct diet, your results will suffer significantly.
So how do we not sacrifice on our dieting? Well its simple. Maintain a solid diet consistency. You do this by ensuring you have your nutritious meals ready for when you need them.
Ensure you are getting your nutrients
By planning and preparing your meals ahead of time, you are ensuring you give your body the much needed nutrients is so desperately needs. Especially after a hard workout. Don’t spend an hour in the gym, working so hard on your goals, only to “pig” out on an unhealthy meal. All for the sake of having “no time to prepare meals”.
Makes it easier to stick to your goals.
When you look in the fridge and see your healthy meals all ready for you, it makes it easier to keep going.
There is nothing worse than focusing on your goals, whether it be weight loss or muscle gain and finding your fridge empty. Especially after a workout, or hard day at work.
We all know what it feels like to be tired, fed up and having to think about preparing a meal. Don’t let yourself get into this position. Rather prepare yourself ahead of time, so you never have to succumb to anymore temptations. Whichever way you think you are justifying it.
What ingredients to use
This part is especially important. Think about the time and dedication you are giving to your exercising or workout programs. You don’t sacrifice anything in the gym that could jeopardize your results do you? So don’t sacrifice on your ingredients too.
Use quality ingredients. These don’t have to be “the most organic ingredient on the planet”. But they should be of a high quality. With that said, it doesn’t have to cost you an “arm and a leg” either. Many places out there, you really are just paying for the packaging.
Try your local farmers market or wholesale supermarket. They most certainly will have what you need for your diet.
By shopping at these places, you will also enjoy seasonal goods with varied ingredients. What a perfect place to stock up on the essentials!
By using high quality ingredients, you are not only ensuring you give your body the right nutrients, but will also add flavour to your food. Don’t cut back on your ingredients. Spend the little extra. You will save money everywhere else.
The benefits of preparing your meals
It saves you money
This has to be a bonus factor right? Who wouldn’t want to eat healthy and nutritiously, while saving money at the same time?
By planning and cooking your meals ahead of time, you not only save money on avoiding “fast food”, you also get to buy in bulk. If you are clever where you bulk buy your food, your savings can be huge. Think cash back! Surely you know of places that offer this?
Think of the money you would spend on a meal for yourself at a restaurant. You won’t get a decent healthy meal for less that £10 right? By preparing your meals ahead of time you could do it for less than £3.
–>Watch this video on how I eat 6 meals a day for under £12<–
Reduces stress and workout anxiety
We all know that work and daily life can be stressful right? Why add to that stress by worrying about what you are going to eat? Especially if you are trying to accomplish something.
By having healthy meals on “the ready”, you eliminate the stress of having to prepare and cook them when it is time to eat. The worst thing is finding that you need to eat, but don’t have the right foods available.
If you are one of those that is easily tempted to “sway” when there is no food, then preparing your meals is a must.
Promotes results and accomplishments
Finding ways to keep yourself on the right path will ensure you achieve your goals. The trick with staying on track is to understand what makes you “fall off the wagon” and work on avoiding it.
Food has and always will be the hardest part of any exercise or bodybuilding regimen. Many people fall short when it comes to their diet. Any avid bodybuilder is always looking for bodybuilding meal prep ideas.
The same goes for any workout or exercise regimen. A good tip for knowing what you should be eating is to understand your current fitness levels. This will help you determine what routine you should be following. Try our men’s fitness test or women’s fitness test as a guide.
Learning to optimize your time
The trick here is to plan ahead. Think about what foods you are going to use and the ingredients required. Once you have this sorted, start at the beginning. What is the first step you need to take and what will the ingredients be. Do this for all the stages and group your ingredients accordingly.
If your preparing requires chopping of ingredients, then do all your chopping at once and separate as required.
For the cooking part, make sure you clearly understand the recipe process and put your food into order of cooking. This can be by heat or cooking time. Most of the time it is about the time. So you would want to start with the food that takes the longest to cook. Or bake.
While your food is cooking, start preparing or cooking your vegetables, potatoes or whatever else you will be eating with your food.
6 meal prep bodybuilding ideas
Simplify your proteins
Whether you are getting ready for bodybuilding meal prep or weight loss meal prep, protein is important. But this is where many fall short. Maybe it is the fact that it needs to be prepared and cooked. Or it might be simply because you don’t know how to prepare simple protein meals.
Chicken for example is a highly sought after protein source, not only for bodybuilders, but also for weight loss enthusiasts. It is a lean meat (one that is important for dietary purposes) that actually doesn’t take that long to prepare.
I personally cook up my chicken ahead of time. Mainly because I enjoy it cold over a green salad. Another very nutritious and extremely quick meal to prepare.
One big problem people find when it comes to chicken, is that it is mostly bland or flavourless. This really doesn’t have to be the case. There are many nutritious healthy chicken recipes out there for you to try.
Why not try adding some spices or seasoning to your chicken before cooking it?
Don’t waste time with vegetables
Although we have mentioned in the section above called “Optimizing Your Time”, about preparing all your vegetables, there are other more effective ways.
For example; you could buy pre cut vegetables or stir fry veggies. These are already cut and prepared, so all you need to do with them is to portion them up and cook as required. The downside with this, is that your portions might end up costing a little more.
However, if you have prepared your meals ahead of time and realise that you still require some veggies. Then pop into the supermarket and pick yourself up some of these ready prepared vegetables.
Utilize your carbohydrates
Part of your macros are sweet potatoes. These can be cooked in the oven along with your chicken. They take a little longer so you might want to put them in first. However, one of our preferences is sweet potato mash. So boil a couple of these beauties while your chicken is being cooked.
The good thing about potatoes, whether sweet or white, is that they prepare well. These can be easily reheated at a later stage and don’t lose flavour or consistency at all. Well not much anyway (depending on different preferences).
Powerpack your meals
When you are looking for bodybuilding meal prep ideas, then think about what you need to eat. Sometimes less is more. 2 of your macros that you can easily in one meal (and pre-prepared), is chicken and sweet potato. Add some broccoli and “bang” you have a power meal right there.
Admittedly, this might not be the best tasting meal, but hey, we are after the nutrients first (you could always spice up your chicken though). Taste comes second (well that’s my preference anyway). This is one of the best bodybuilding tips for gaining size.
Another power meal could be a bodybuilding breakfast. An easy breakfast for this could be some oats, nuts and bananas (or banana). Oats these days don’t have to be made the old way. There are many different amazing flavours that are pre-prepared. Just add boiling water and stand for a minute or two.
During this time you could get some nuts ready and chop up some bananas. Once your oats are ready, it’s time to eat. You’re looking at 2-3 minutes from start to eating. Not a bad time saver first thing in the morning.
If you are looking for high protein snacks bodybuilding ideas, then we suggest pistachio nuts. These are great for easy and quick eating. They not only contain essential fats, they are fulfilling, so you are less tempted to binge.
Best storage and packaging tips for bodybuilding prep ideas
There are many different ways to pack and store your prepared foods, but some are not entirely necessary. If you have the freezer space, then you have other options. However, if you do not have the space, then you might be limited to what you can do. But let’s show you how you can do both.
Let us assume that you have decided to prepare meals that have separate ingredients. Such as a chicken breast, potato and vegetables. You can prepare your chicken and potatoes, but not your veggies. This will allow you to only require a smaller container, as not all the food is going in. This saves on space.
If you are into your training and looking at gaining more muscle, then you would want to look at a bodybuilding macro calculator. This will help you determine what you require per meal. With this information you can prepare your meals accordingly and store them correctly.
The good thing about preparing your meal is that you can weigh your food in their raw state (best way for accurate results). Do not panic if the data that is generated from your macro calculator is confusing. All the raw data you require is present on the packaging label.
Remember that you may lose weight once cooked. So it is a good idea to check your cooked portion weight again before storing it. This way you know how much to put into each container.
Cost saving shopping
The way supermarkets and other such enterprises make money is by their single portion packages. Normally you will find there is always one chicken breast short of what you need. This is their strategy. Make you buy more for more.
Many people think that cooking in advance will cost you more in the long run. But this is not necessarily true. The reason being is that you are buying in bulk. What do we all know about bulk buying? It is cheaper. Especially if it is wholesale.
Think of all those “annoying” flyers that come through your door. That for the most part end up becoming fire starters or paper planes. Look at the offers. See what coupons they offer or deals that are upcoming.
Look at getting a loyalty card (especially ones with cashback) from different stores. Think base products. Like rice, oats or tuna. These can be bought in very large quantities (5kg bag of rice for example). The cost comes down dramatically and your portions are substantial.
Salmon for example is a brilliant source of protein and Omega 3. But costly in small portions. Costco do amazing deals on their salmon. Large full pieces are available and these can be divided into significant portions for considerably less that what you would pay for the same portion in a supermarket.
Another option is to plan your meals ahead of time, based on whatever special offers are going to become available at different supermarkets. Once these offers are available, go ahead and stock up on them at a discount.
To sum up on bodybuilding meal prep ideas
By now you should have many different options for preparing your bodybuilding or weight loss meals ahead of time. As you should have noticed, there is an element of planning required and some research. But once you have done this, you will start to see the results.
Don’t find yourself caught up in temptations and excuses because you “don’t have time”. There many options available to you when it comes to preparing your meals. Your goals and dreams do not have to be crushed for the sake of a little extra time to save on time.
Keep yourself focused on what you need to do, what you are doing and what you will continue to do. Coming up with the best bodybuilding meal prep ideas doesn’t have to be a mammoth task.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article. We hope you enjoyed it. If you did, please like and share it with your friends. We want people to see that meal prepping can be easy, fun and effective.