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On-the-go meal ideas: Plan and Pack Smart!

It’s Sunday! So let me help you come up with some healthy lunch box ideas for you and your family. Work/school lunches shouldn’t be boring, and they most certainly don’t need to be bought. So often we buy our lunches or turn to the over-processed nutritionally empty packaged options because we are out of ideas. So please, let me do the thinking for you!

I know what some of you might be thinking – if it isn’t “I don’t know what to eat”, it’s that it requires a lot of time. It’s true, healthy living does require some preparation. But what can be more valuable than time spent toward good health? Your health is in your hands. Make better choices for better health!

I am so passionate about clean eating on-the-go. Food prep is my number one tip for a healthy week… Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. I believe nutritious food is more delicious than the processed junk, is clearly better for us, and what’s more, it really doesn’t need to be complicated. Make a big batch of something and dish it out throughout the week. Choose a few options and repeat!

Below are perfectly good meal options to include in your diet. Mix and swap vegetables as much as you can for nutrient variety and you are set for a week of vibrant energy! Whether it’s an on-the-go breakfast, a packed lunch for you or your children, a mid-morning or afternoon snack, I have you covered!

 

Wondering… what kind of posts do you like to see here? Do you want more nutrition facts, vegan tips, more sweet recipes, more savoury recipes/meal ideas, more yoga, more lifestyle, beauty, or anything specific you have been waiting for me to cover?! Anything at all. Please comment below or DM me!! I would love to hear from you!

Breakfast

IMG_0500Lunch options

  • Homemade sushi using brown rice or quinoa, veg, avocado, tempeh/tofu. I also like to add kim chi and tahini!
  • Mountain bread/gluten free wraps with salad, avocado/hummus/pesto & lentils/beans.
  • Lentil Bolognese with konjac/zucchini noodles.
  • Bean Burgers with salad and a tahini vinaigrette.
  • Super Salad – 2-3 cups leafy greens and salad veg with 1/2 cup beans, 1/4 avocado and optional 1/2 cup sweet potato or quinoa. Homemade salad dressings.
  • Tempeh/Tofu poke with green salad, or in a wrap.
  • Mung bean pasta with pesto, sautéed veg.
  • Quinoa, Black Bean, and Corn salad – keeps well!

IMG_2356

Snacks

  • Rosemary & Sea Salt Seed Crackers with 2-3 tbsp hummus, pesto or avocado.
  • Coconut yoghurt with stevia and cinnamon, small handful nuts and seeds, and 1/4 cup blueberries.
  • Shredded carrots drizzled with 1 tbsp tahini, 1 tsp maple syrup, cinnamon + 4-5 walnuts, crushed.
  • 2 x Bliss Balls
  • Chopped veg – raw zucchini, cucumber, capsicum, celery, carrot – with Cashew Coconut Pesto.
  • Raw trail mix – my favourite combo is raw almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, coconut flakes, 1-2 chopped dates + tbsp goji berries.
  • Handful of homemade granola
  • 1 x Choc banana muffin
  • Sliced apple with cinnamon and nut butter of choice (or small handful nuts)
  • Kale Chips with Tahini Cumin Dipping Sauce
  • Nori sheets wrapped around vegetable sticks, avocado and tahini + Kim chi.

Nori wraps are my go-to savoury snack that also ensure a serving or two of veg These are a great alternative to large handfuls of nuts/dried fruit/bliss balls/bars which can be easy to default to. Sea vegetables (nori, dulse, arame etc) are low in calories but overflowing with nutrients, as they are exposed to the mineral-rich ocean Not just iodine calcium, iron, omega 3, vit C too! I prefer to get the #raw nori sheets from @sprout_market (not toasted) so they're in their purest, most nutritious form - and use them in soups, stir-fries, salads & of course sushi or nori rolls!!

The enigma that is Work-Life Balance

Work-life balance” is a term that gets thrown around a lot. Some people have it, some people think they have it, while most people longingly aspire to it. The phrase itself assumes that “work” is not a part of “life”, and must be “balanced” against it. It has become almost enigmatic, we can’t describe it or crack its code, leaving many somewhat intimidated by it. How could we ever balance one (work), so demanding and integral to our financial situation, with the other (life), that encompasses so much?!

Defining the work aspect is pretty straight forward – you know when you’re showing up each day, hitting goals and adding value to the business. But life, how do we judge if we are showing up and adding value to our lives?

It is increasingly recognised that quality of life is strongly intertwined with quality of health. Not simply our physical health i.e. what we eat or how often we move, but also our mental, emotional and spiritual wellbeing. This involves relationships, leisure, pleasure, self-reflection, self-love, beliefs and much, much more.

With one third of our lives spent in the office, how are we expected to find the time to fit in all this other stuff?

The truth is, many of us don’t. We prioritise careers and allow our health to take second chair. That looming deadline… or time for the gym? Early morning meeting… or a much-needed 15 minute meditation? Coffee to get me through… or herbal tea? Late night working… or time with loved ones? So many of us sacrifice the latter for the former far too often. By the end of the day, we are so exhausted and resentful of the sacrifices we have to make, we often make further poor choices – the thought of preparing a healthy meal ridiculous compared to the easier options like takeaway and comfort food, the idea of a yoga class (if we even left the office in time) ludicrous when there’s chores to be done, relationships to nurture or simply mindless reality TV on offer.

With workplace stress levels continually rising, it is becoming abundantly clear that the work-life scales are tipping unfavourably for the majority of us. Physically, stress is impacting 75% of Australians, while mentally it is taking its toll on 68%. Only half of Australians feel their employers truly care about their wellbeing.

To combat this, a few forward-thinking organisations have recognised the integral role health initiatives have with cultivating corporate culture and business success. Implementing programs such as lunch-time yoga offer desk-bound employees an opportunity to exercise, ease their minds and reconnect, within work hours.

This is not only fantastic for their overall health but also serves as a business tool – the midday boost increases focus and productivity, encourages team-building and makes employees feel that they are getting more from their job than simply a pay cheque.

When I teach corporate yoga classes, the first comment I get after Savasana is “I could take a nap!” But 10 minutes later, they all report feeling much more alert and focused, and this stays with them throughout their afternoon. Students are happier because they are getting their workout in, they feel valued by their employer, their work improves and they enjoy the social aspect. The benefits are endless!

Work-life balance isn’t necessarily asking, are we hour-for-hour spending equal time on both, but rather, are we giving as much energy to our wellbeing and relationships, as we are to our occupation? Are we supporting ourselves physically, mentally and emotionally, so that we can fulfill our jobs and career ambitions to the best of our ability?

Organisations need to help with the balancing act by prioritising employee wellbeing. That one hour within the work day just once a week truly makes all the difference to tipping the scales back in our favour. By implementing a wellness initiative employers assist their team by decreasing stress, increasing productivity and generating an inclusive corporate culture that fosters loyalty to the business.

If you’ve identified that your company needs to introduce a healthy dose of yoga, why not suggest in-house lunchtime classes?

I’d love to hear from you! Enquire today: sami@samibloom.com

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