Friday, February 24, 2012

Lunch Packing: 101

I have to admit that for the the past week I haven't been as committed as I would've liked. I twisted my ankle when I tripped a couple of weeks ago. I kept running on it until last Saturday, as I hadn't really realized how bad it was until I saw this:
I know, my feet are kind of vein-y (especially after working out, which was when this was taken).

I decided that continuing to run on an injured ankle was not in my best interest. I know, I could've at least done strength training, but I guess I just got knocked off my game. :( On a positive note, I continued eating healthily, despite the lack of working out.

Chris and I have been really good about keeping fruits and veggies on hand lately. On the weekend, I make a list of fruits/veggies/healthy foods I want in the kitchen, and Chris goes out to buy them. He usually goes to the flea market and/or Wal-Mart, but this weekend he's going to a local produce stand. (I don't always go with him because he claims I slow him down. I do love shopping! lol) One way I am able to make sure the produce is eaten before it goes bad is by packing my lunch everyday. Two of the grocery lists I've used to know which foods to buy can be found here (page 7 has printable version) and here.

For as long as I can remember, I've had packed lunches.  As a child, they included a little note from Mom or Dad.  In college, they were less put together and more whatever I could throw together.  Nowadays, they're planned out and include lots of fruits and veggies. I took some pictures of my lunches throughout the week to show you. The containers featured in these pictures are by Ziploc and can be purchased in a 2-pack at Wal-Mart. The most important part about buying a container like this is that the divisions are also made in the lid, so that the fruits or dip or veggies don't all get spilled together when you pack your lunch.
Apples, grapes, almonds, carrots, Cheddar Cheese Quakes Rice Snacks, Reduced Fat PB, FF Ranch
Salad, grapes, blueberries, Roasted Garlic & Herb Pita Chips, FF Ranch
Salad, blueberries, grapes, PB Granola Bars, FF Ranch
Apple, salad, carrots, RF PB, FF Ranch
Grapes, blueberries, carrots, mushrooms, cucumbers, Quakes, Low Fat Honey Graham Crackers, FF Ranch

My salad usually consists of: greens, cucumber, carrots, mushrooms, sunflower seeds, and/or raisins.  In the second-to-last picture, both of my containers were dirty, so I just used a regular container for my salad, a small container for the peanut butter (for the apple, of course!), and reused a to-go container for the dressing.  It was the perfect size and didn't spill, even though it ended up on it's side. I read that you can purchase these "souffle cups" online or from a restaurant supplier.

I know my lunches all look very similar at first glance, but they're all different and, like I said, I'm trying my best to eat the produce before it goes bad.  For a better variety of lunch ideas, you can go to the Easy Lunchboxes Photo Gallery (which I found after I started packing my healthier lunches, thank you very much! ;)). Added bonus: On their website, you can purchase similar containers to the containers I use, as well as other lunch box accessories. As far as the lunch box, I really like my thirty-one thermal tote (in the second-to-last picture). It's an odd shape, but fits the containers well and, thanks to the insulation, everything stays chilled with an ice pack. Oh, and for a drink, I just get some ice water at work. :)

I really hope this post didn't bore you to death and that you found at least one useful notion. I plan to start running again tomorrow (hubby bought me ankle braces) and writing another post afterward.

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