Busy mums are exactly that. Busy. The number of hours in the day is not nearly enough for all of the things we need to get done.
Managing the house provides an endless and recurring list of tasks. Children are a handful at any age and there are a hundred other things that demand our attention.
There aren’t enough hours in the day to get done all we need to do. We need to find some time-savers to bring some sanity back into our lives.
Let’s walk through 10 time-saving tips the In Shape Mummy team has come up with:
1. Plan ahead.
Pick a day to plan your meals every week. Don’t spend time every day thinking through what you’re going to cook. Planning the whole week in advance will take far less time and will leave you with less stress during the week.
2. Shop online if you can.
If we stop and think about how much time we spend with our trips to the shops, we’re surprised by how much time it accumulates to over a week. It really starts to add up if we include the time required to get ready, pack snacks and drinks, get everyone into the car, load the pram, drive to the shop, find a car park, unload, walk to the shops, wander the isles, stand in the checkout queue, check out, etc. Shopping online may seem time consuming the first time you do it, but it is nothing like a real trip to the shop. Plus, we get quicker at shopping online the more we do it.
3. Plan to eat left over dinners for lunch the next day.
Planning leftovers is a brilliant way to save on cooking time. Preparing a meal to serve 4 people takes only seconds more time than preparing the same meal to feed 3 people. The next day you could be enjoying that same meal for lunch after exerting the tiny effort required to pop it into the microwave.
4. Freeze what you can so if your day falls apart you have meals in reserve.
Occasionally cooking up a double batch of your favourite freezer-friendly recipe is a great way to squirrel away some healthy and quick lunch options for days when cooking is all too much. Look for recipes that require little or no extra effort to double the quantity and you’ll save yourself time when you really need it.
5. Prepare meals in advance.
Try scheduling a bit of time each week to prepare meals for the following days. If you can manage to schedule some time or find a rare lull that doesn’t need to be filled by an emergency nap, try prepping some food for the coming days. When it comes time for dinner, you’ll be thankful you did!
6. Keep healthy snacks on stand-by.
It’s a lot harder to eat junk food like chips and chocolate if they are not in your cupboard. Cut the temptation and throw out any junk food you may have in the house. Stock up on healthy snacks instead. The next time you’re feeling peckish, you can it will be easier to go for a guilt-free healthy option if it's on stand-by.
7. Take a lunch box including snacks so you won’t be caught out being hungry.
You’ll be less tempted by unhealthy food if you feel satisfied. Being caught out by hunger when unprepared and away from home is a recipe for disaster. When we need food fast, we often end up eating fast food, which is one of the least healthy foods around.
8. Think small when you think of exercise.
Studies have shown that doing several short bursts of exercise can be just as effective as doing the same amount of exercise in one session. You can break your exercise up into manageable chunks, like taking a 10-minute walk 3 times per day. Or, do a few laps around the supermarket, park your car far away from the shop, march in place while you watch TV, or turn on your favourite music and dance around the living room with your baby! Do whatever you like, but grab little moments of movement throughout your day. It all adds up and has heaps of additional benefits!
9. If you’re meeting up with a friend, meet for a walk instead of sitting for a coffee.
Walking and chatting produces “feel good” hormones that you don’t get when you sit and chat. Make yours a “take away coffee” and go for a walk with your friend. That way you’re getting your exercise in and catching up at the same time. Mix your social life with your health efforts to make your workouts fun! Chances are you’ll both be glad you did!
10. The In Shape Mummy Health Shake is an awesome time saver.
The In Shape Mummy Health Shake contains all the nutrients of a slimming and healthy meal but takes less than 60 seconds to prepare. It's the perfect time saver for mums on the go! My favorite fast way to enjoy my shake is to throw it in the blender with 1 frozen banana, 1 cup of spinach and 1 cup of coconut water or milk. Click here to learn more.