What a wonderful weekend! I was up in Denver for the Denver Rock-and-Roll Marathon and 1/2 Marathon. My husband was running in the half, and we had some other friends out there as well. It was BEAUTIFUL – a spectacular Colorado fall day! Afterwards, we visited some friends and had a little lunch before making the drive back home. When I got back, I had to bathe the dog, take care of a few chores around the house, etc. and so here it is, rather late in the day and I STILL need to prep for my Whole 30, which begins tomorrow.
Maybe you don’t think this is a big deal, but I am a planner, so when I don’t get to plan and prep, it makes me a little anxious. And you see…a Whole 30 is kind of a big deal. I also know that tomorrow is generally my busiest day of the week, so if I don’t have a few things ready to go, I might have some challenges to overcome.
So I sat down and thought for a minute, “What can I do in the least amount of time that will have the greatest impact on the success of my Whole 30 starting tomorrow?”
I came up with my WHOLE 30 FAST 5
CLEAN GREENS Many people immediately think “cereal” when you mention breakfast. When you eat paleo, though, cereal is generally a no-no. There are very few options that don’t include a bunch of grains or added sugars so you have to look at that meal a little differently. I almost always think “eggs.” And for me, I love adding greens to my eggs. But when I’m in a hurry in the morning, the last thing I want to do is wash a bunch – or even a handful, frankly – of kale to add to my greens. And when I’m starving at lunch, if I’m going salad, that lettuce had better be ready!
So here it is – a bunch of kale, a bunch of collard greens, and a head of lettuce washed and ready to go! Easy.
PALEO MAYO If you were to ask me about something that I never thought I’d do pre-paleo that I will never stop doing now that I know how easy it is, that thing would be homemade mayo. Hands down. Check out this post by one of my very favorite paleo bloggers and authors, Melissa Joulwan. (She just released a new cookbook, WellFed 2, that was on my front porch when I got home and I am aching to open it!) Her mayo recipe from her first book, WellFed, includes a variation with apple cider vinegar instead of lemon juice, and that’s what I use, but seriously – Pass by the processed jar of you-don’t-know-what and make your own mayo! If you have a stick blender, it takes 10 SECONDS. No joke.
Then all week long, in a matter of minutes, you have tuna salad, egg salad (because of Fast 5 #3), creamy salad dressing half-way made, lettuce wraps with a dollop of something, tons of options!
HARD BOILED EGGS When you are hungry, about to workout, just post-workout, needing a snack, looking for extra protein for a salad or main, hard boiled eggs are the way to go. They’re quick and versatile and can be made in advance.
The method that works best for me is to put several eggs in the pot and cover them by about an inch with cold water. Bring it to a boil over high heat and then immediately turn the head to the lowest possible setting, put a lid on them, and set the timer for 9 minutes. Some people take them completely off the heat, but I’ve found it works best for me when there’s a little something happening underneath. After 9 minutes, remove them and run them under cold water for a second and then put them in an ice bath for at least 10ish minutes – I’ll often leave them for a bit. Peel them and store them in a storage container with a tightly fitting lid and a piece of paper towel to soak up any excess moisture. Hard boiled eggs all week long. Excellent!
BAKED SWEET POTATOES Paleo carbs are different from what you may have previously thought about carbs. The idea isn’t low-carb or no-carb. It’s about finding the right amount of the most nutrient-dense carbs to fuel your activities each day. I work out nearly every day and some days are quite intense so it’s important that I have some healthy carbs to refuel, otherwise I won’t have enough energy the next day. In come sweet potatoes.
I plop a few into a glass baking dish, stick them in the oven at 400 degrees until they’re soft (time will vary depending on size) and then stick them in container in the fridge. I will mix them with things or cut a chunk off to eat with a meal. It doesn’t really matter as long as I don’t have to wait for them to cook when I’m in a hurry.
ONE BIG DINNER = LEFTOVERS FOR THE WEEK If I’m busy all day tomorrow, what will I have for lunch? Or maybe a last-minute dinner? Ummm…leftovers! I don’t acutally think of my pre-prepped meals as leftovers, especially when it’s something that tastes better the next day, like soups or stews or “pasta” sauces. Tonight I made a delicious meat sauce that will go on top of zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash. Don’t worry – I’ll post the recipe tomorrow because it’s definitely worth making.
The idea is to make something you like and either eat it and save some for lunches, therefore saving you time, or make it simultaneously so that you can have it as your main meal when you need a break during the week. Double cooking or batch cooking are really helpful when you have a lot going on in your life but still want to eat right.
There they are…my Fast 5. That’s what I’m tackling tonight, and I know you can too! A little preparedness goes a long way for a successful adventure. Let me know in the comments below if there are things you like to do to be ready for the week. I’d love to hear them!
25 thoughts on “Whole 30 Fast 5”
Love the fast five. I am not doing the whole 30 or paleo but these items are perfect and easy to prepare for the week. I already do the lettuce and sweet potatoes, just have to do the eggs I would love to try the mayo and get that sauce recipe. Love it!!
Excellent! You’re going to love the sauce – it has some kick!
Ok, you got me. I’m on my way to the kitchen to start hard boiling a bunch of eggs. Thanks, Michelle. Good luck tomorrow.
Awesome! Easiest thing to have on hand.
We grill 3-4 different meats and I usually roast 2-3 different veggies. Our favorite is Brussel sprouts, broccoli, and sweet potatoes. Meat is pork steak, beef steak and chicken. This way we can have several meals at our finger tips. Took us awhile to get here. Then I plan on cooking one big meal during the week for a chance mid week.
It is always great to have some grilled meat and veg on hand! Drizzle a little sauce or toss in a stir-fry or throw-together salad…so many variations! Awesome tip!
I always have cleaned greens on hand but had not thought of baking my sweet potatoes ahead of time. On my list! Hope to hear more about kale. I don’t know what to do with it.
Having a sweet potato ready to go makes a lot of things easier. And I will definitely post some kale stuff!
Salad dressing is another quickie I like to have on hand every week. Vinaigrettes are easy when using the simple 3-1 rule… 3 parts oil and 1 part vinegar. Add a tsp of Dijon mustard and salt and pepper and you’re good to go! 🙂
Absolutely! I used some salad dressing a little differently today and it was so good that I’ll be posting about it in a couple days. But the REASON I used it was because it was already made. Awesome tip!
I live in Denver! Paleo bloggers unite! Where do you live? Maybe next time all the Denver-area bloggers should get together somewhere! 🙂
I’m on Day 21 of mine. I know the feeling of needing to prep. I always make breakfast for the week over the weekend. I try to have some things ready for dinners too.
How’d your husband do in the race? I ran the marathon before it was Rock ‘n’ Roll.
I’m down here in Pueblo but would definitely make it to Denver for a Paleo get-together. My husband did great – it’s such a fun event. He’s already planning on it again for next year!
Day 21 – Congratulations! I bet you’re feeling all the good energy!
Take care – and I’m sure we’ll connect again soon. 🙂
I started my Whole 30 – 8 days ago and the first week was a little bit of a scramble. This week I am much more prepared. I took the weekend to grill and prepare some paleo mayo and have all fresh produce ready. All the tips are great – keep them coming. I am loving the new taste of food!
Isn’t it amazing how our taste buds start to change when we give them real food? Keep up the good work!
Sweet potatoes going in the oven now! Prepping them made a great study break– positive procrastination! 🙂
I’m going to have to use that – positive procrastination! Love it.
Very inspiring suggestions, the fast 5 is workable
. Given me great ideas and ways to plan great foods. Love your blog, excellent educational tool. Keep up the good work.
Thanks! I’m glad you like it. 🙂
You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this topic to be
really something which I think I would never understand.
It seems too complicated and very broad for me. I’m looking forward
for your next post, I’ll try to get the hang of it!
I hope I can help you make sense of it all. It’s the best way of eating that I have found. Once you get the hang of it, food becomes so friendly!
I do not even know how I ended up here, but I thought this
post was great. I don’t know who you are but certainly you are going to a
famous blogger if you aren’t alpready 😉 Cheers!
That is so kind! Thank you!
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