Make healthy habits one of your top priorities this school year! Here are nine tips to help you do just that!
Your classroom is decorated, supplies are sorted, the Dollar Store has been ravaged, class lists are printed, lockers assigned, books sorted…yes, you feel ready for your students.
But something is missing. It’s not the glue sticks or index cards…it’s how you are going to care for YOU this school year.
We’ve all seen the faculty lounge — a landmine of donuts, snacks, leftover birthday cake, fast food.
Things that we know we shouldn’t eat, but there they are…glittering with all their delightfully naughty (often day-old) empty calories. Ready to sabotage our greatest resolutions to make healthy food choices this year.
It’s easy to fall into poor eating habits when you’re hungry.
You plan for your lessons, but do you plan for YOU?
Make some simple plans and provisions to help you avoid the guilt-ridden faculty room snacks this year.
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1. Do this first
If you’re like me and can’t eat first thing in the morning, pack a “breakfast” item for when you are hungry.
Don’t try to go all morning without eating — that will set you up for a lunch overload! Especially if some kind soul brought in birthday cake!
If you are a breakfast eater, try to leave enough time to eat a good one! Pop-tarts really don’t count.
Smoothies! They are a great way to get in some fruits and veggies first thing. Get the ingredients together the night before to make this a truly quick breakfast.
2. Set yourself up for success
You’ll be more likely to stay away from the vending machine or Mrs. Walter’s candy dish if you have your own stash of healthy snacks.
Keep non perishable healthy snacks in your desk. Trail Mix (careful if you have a nut-free or peanut free school or classroom), pretzels, dried apricots or granola bars make quick snacks.
Keep in mind this is a snack, not a meal since dried fruit and nuts are calorie dense.
3. Healthy hydration
Drink water. Yes, teachers have an uncanny ability to go for looooong stretches without using the bathroom, so drinking water may sound like a recipe for an emergency.
Have water at your desk rather than coffee or soda (I love this mug that I got at the hospital!) . You don’t want to rely on caffeine to get you through the day.
4. What’s in the bag?
Plan your lunch (and lunch your plan!).
I love the salad in a mason jar recipes.
You can make five salad on Sunday for a week’s worth of lunches. If that’s not your style, frozen meals can be stashed in your home or school freezer. Or plan dinner leftovers for lunch.
Packing your own lunch will help you eat better and save you money! Invest is a thermos for leftovers or soup.
And…if you’re planning to pack your lunch this year — buy yourself a cute lunchbox!! That has to be one of the most fun purchases for the start of the year!!
5. Eating clean
Bring some fresh fruit or vegetables along with your lunch. Those baby carrots are good, but your grocery store probably stocks other prepared portions of fruits and vegetables.
These can get pricey — but if this will keep you away from donuts, it might be worth it! If you have time the night before, cut up your apple, peach, or carrot sticks.
6. Involve the fam
You don’t have to do this alone!
If you have children who take lunch to school, they can help out with the process — ideally the night before. This certainly simplifies the next morning.
If your team is up for it, why not have a monthly lunch with healthy food choices?
7. What’s your “Lesson” plan
You make weekly plans! You can do this!
Plan a simple weekly menu that you can use for lunches and dinners. Save your weekly plans and reuse them when you can. A study from John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health reports that people who eat at home have healthier diets.
Always wanted to try a dinner subscription service? Here’s the perfect opportunity!
No real surprise there, but it might make you feel a little better when you’re making dinner! The real beauty of a weekly menu is that it won’t sabotage your healthy eating goals. There are lots of menu planners and templates available online, but just keep it simple.
8. Don’t get hangry
You don’t want to be hungry, so the extra bag of carrot sticks, nuts, or an apple that you might not eat at lunch will come in handy when you decide to stay late at school to grade projects or meet with a team member.
Pay attention to your triggers when you eat. I always want chocolate when I’m grading papers!!
All things in moderation!
Just like with your students, everything won’t go as planned.
Don’t be too hard on yourself if you have a donut or piece of birthday cake.
Keep at it though!
Let’s not wait until January to make resolutions to eat better. Why not start the very first day of school!
Set a plan to take care of yourself this year!
What are some healthy choices you’ll make this year?