Round 3: Submit Results Now
Monday, February 6 - Sunday, February 19
Deadline for submitting results: Monday, February 27.
Eating Healthier at Work
Considering that many of us are spending upwards of half of our waking hours on the job, our workplace eating habits can make a big impact of our health! In addition, research has found that food choice can really make an impact on our productivity at work!
Benefits of bringing your lunch to work may include:
Spend less money. If you are currently in the habit of eating out for lunch, think about the amount of money you are currently spending on a monthly basis. We can assume that an average lunch out is $10, that can add up quickly to $200 per month or more!
Consume less calories. Research has shown that people who eat out as opposed to cook their own food are consuming significantly more calories. Eating out can add convenience but it also adds calories, and over time this can add up and contribute to the slow weight gain that many of us see on a yearly basis. Cutting back on meals created outside of the house can be an integral part of a weight loss plan.
Tips for cooking up healthy lunches from home:
Salads can be a great simple and healthy option. At the beginning of the week, prepare a large salad with all of your favorite vegetables and refrigerate with a paper towel on top (to keep your salad crisp) in an airtight container. Throughout the week, mix up your salad by adding different mix-ins and dressings.
Sandwiches are also a satisfying and simple option. Healthy sandwich suggestions start with whole grain bread or wrap (look for whole grains as the first ingredient) and add:
- Vegetables like spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, mushrooms, and peppers. Make it interesting with grilled or roasted veggies.
- Lean proteins like beans, tuna or salmon, low-sodium deli turkey, grilled chicken, or baked tofu
- Healthier condiments like mustard, hummus, vinaigrettes, olive oil mayonnaise or mashed avocado
Soups can be very simple to create with a small amount of effort and provides several servings that can be eaten over several days. Soups can be portioned out into single serve containers and frozen for later use as well. Start by sautéing any vegetables that you have in olive oil for about 10 minutes. Add a couple of cans of low sodium broth and a source of complex carbohydrate such as beans or pasta, as well as a lean protein if desired. Bring to a boil and simmer for several minutes and season as desired, to allow flavors to develop.
Pack away Dinner. When you cook a typical dinner meal, intentionally cook more food than needed for that meal. As you portion out your dinner plate, pack away one or two meals to bring to work with you. You can place these in the freezer to eat in several weeks as well. Build op a stock of meals to keep a healthy amount of variety in your weekly meals.
Call up a difficult situation: stress, relationship problem, worried about something that might happen. Think about something that may be difficult, but not overwhelmingly difficult.
Think of the situation and get in touch with it. What is going on, what happened, what might happen, who said what? Illustrate the situation in your mind's eye.
Three elements of self-compassion/three phrases
- This is a moment of suffering: we are bringing mindful awareness to the fact that suffering is present. Bring some language that speaks to you "this is really hard right now" "I am really struggling." Turning to our difficulty and acknowledging it, naming it.
- Suffering is a part of life: reminding ourselves of our common humanity. Finding language that speaks to you, may be something like "it is not abnormal to feel this way, many people are going through similar situations." The degree of suffering may be different, the flavor of suffering may be different. But suffering is a part of life, part of being human.
- May I be kind to myself in this moment. Support bringing kindness to yourself by perhaps bringing your hands over your heart or some other place on your body that feels soothing or comforting. Feeling the warmth of your hands, gentle touch, letting sensations of care stream through your fingers. "May I be kind to myself" using any language that supports this sense of kindness. Perhaps language you would use with a good friend you care about who was going through the same situation. "I am here for you, it is going to be okay" "I care about you." You can even try using a diminutive if that feels comfortable "darling" or using your first name. Anything that feels natural to express your deep wish that you would be well, happy, and free from suffering.
Then we will let go of the practice and notice how your body feels right now. Allowing any sensations to be just as they are, allowing yourself to be just as you are in this moment.