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How to pack a lunch when you're always on the go..



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MISSELLIE123
Posts: 64
3/29/12 9:56 A

Tip on the keeping boiled eggs in the fridge:

Mark the Boiled eggs with a sharpie (I get carried away and draw faces on each one)

This prevents mix-ups with the non-boiled ones, which can be a real pain when you go to peel it at your desk! (yes... I speak from experience.)



SAVAGE2547
SparkPoints: (321)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 4
3/29/12 9:04 A

I love all of these ideas! Thanks everyone!



DRS510
Posts: 1,586
3/28/12 10:04 P

grilled chicken or salmon!



S-TWIN
SparkPoints: (12,484)
Fitness Minutes: (16,170)
Posts: 15
3/28/12 8:23 P

I also have to pack a lunch, without access to a fridge or microwave. I use an insulated lunch bag with an ice pack (or a bottle of frozen water - which turns into a nice cool drink midday!)

I pack a lot of fruits and salads in Tupperware containers. I can even cut it up the night before - a little lemon juice on the fruit (especially apples) keep it from turning brown. I always have baby or cut carrots on hand to eat.

I pack a clementine or grapefruit for a midmorning snack, and I also air pop some popcorn or pack some dry cereal for when I get the mid-afternoon munchies.

Non-fat yogurt is a staple of my lunches. Sometimes I'll even add a teaspoon of peanut butter or a splash of sugar-free chocolate syrup and make a yogurt dipping sauce for my fruit!

I love salads - they pack so well! Also tuna/chicken sandwiches are good, as well as your classic PBandJ.

I have enjoyed packing a lunch! Just make sure you prep the night before or allow 10 minutes in the morning to throw it all together. The last thing you need is to be late out the door with only unhealthy or snacky food for lunch because you ran out of time. Good luck!



MICHERU
Posts: 37
3/28/12 6:52 P

I definitely just prepare everything the night before, so I can throw it in my bag after breakfast and go. For me, it is usually leftovers or egg salad for lunch, and I throw in snacks like light string cheese, apple or pear, carrots and celery, trail mix, a 100 cal pudding cup and I am set for my 9 to 12 hour day at school. If I am still hungry I grab a small smoothie from Jamba Juice.



JO_TO_JOWOW
SparkPoints: (4,694)
Fitness Minutes: (6,938)
Posts: 32
3/28/12 10:17 A

I'm still working on making this a habit, but when I'm putting dinner leftovers away, I make sure to take out a smaller tupperware container for my lunch. This way I don't forget between the dishes and cleanup.



STLCARDSFANS05
Posts: 916
3/28/12 8:41 A

i pack my whole days breakfast, lunch, and snacks the night before



KEEKEE7532
SparkPoints: (2,766)
Fitness Minutes: (3,118)
Posts: 5
3/28/12 8:33 A

Mornings are busy getting everyone ready and out the door on time. To help save time I pack up next day lunches after dinner. Sometimes i recreate leftovers into a healthy lunch. I am not one to eat the same sandwich or wrap on a daily basis...I get bored!



SUSANK16
Posts: 490
3/28/12 7:31 A

I buy pre-cut fruit and flat bread sandwich rolls. It takes me about 5 minutes to put water a container of fruit and a sandwich together for lunch. I agree with the others - it is all about being prepared in advance.



FERRYCHIC1
SparkPoints: (7,917)
Fitness Minutes: (6,081)
Posts: 10
3/27/12 10:07 P

im finding prepackaging on the weekend works best for me as well . if i have a craving then its only one thing to think about and portions are ready



THETA83
SparkPoints: (2,397)
Fitness Minutes: (3,752)
Posts: 61
3/27/12 3:26 P

Trinity Royal,
Thanks for the great ideas. I especially like keeping the boiled eggs in refrigerator.



THETA83
SparkPoints: (2,397)
Fitness Minutes: (3,752)
Posts: 61
3/27/12 3:25 P

Trinity Royal,
Thanks for the great ideas. I especially like keeping the boiled eggs in refrigerator.



THETA83
SparkPoints: (2,397)
Fitness Minutes: (3,752)
Posts: 61
3/27/12 3:10 P

Trinity Royal,
Thanks for the great ideas. I especially like keeping the boiled eggs in refrigerator.



MAVERICK59
Posts: 5,295
3/27/12 1:26 P

Lots of raw fruits and veggies with a container of hummas.



TRINITYROYAL
Posts: 2,399
3/27/12 12:02 P

The key is being prepared. I do most cooking and food prep in large batches on the weekend, so that everything is laid out in the fridge ready to go for the week.

Here are some of the things I do:

Salads:
Shred a few heads of romaine lettuce and store in a large freezer bag in the fridge. Chop carrots, celery, cucumber, tomatoes, bell peppers etc. Store in smaller freezer bags in the fridge. Very easy to assemble salads quickly in the morning, before everyone heads off to work and school.

Eggs:
Boil a dozen eggs and put in the fridge. Ready to add to lunches or snacks.

Snacks:
Small low-fat yogurt cups, babybel cheese rounds (the small ones wrapped in red wax).

Fruit:
Berries, sliced oranges, sliced apples, fresh pineapple cut into bite-sized chunks. Deployed in the fridge in 1/2 cup or 1 cup containers. Easy to add to lunches or snacks for a day out.

Meat:
I grill beef, pork or chicken. Slice into bite-sized pieces and deploy in 1/2 cup or 1 cup containers in the fridge. Can be added to salads or stir frys with the salad ingredients mentioned above, or eaten cold, or used in a wrap or sandwich.





1GROVES2
Posts: 10,153
3/27/12 9:26 A

I think she was making the dressing (vinegarette) in the Mason jar,...but i guess you could put salad in it, not handy to eat though.
I buy sandwich bags and snack bags plus pint size freezer bags. This way I have a bag for any lunch item, and I put salad in the pint bag. I boil eggs evey week, so I always have them on hand.
If driving and trying to eat, I don`t think I can help, because I just cannot eat and drive....I can chew gum and walk though LOL



SHERICES
SparkPoints: (4,388)
Fitness Minutes: (3,595)
Posts: 47
3/26/12 6:40 P

I also love the layering the salad in the mason jar idea- i'll have to give it a try. I typically leave the house at 8 and don't get back until 9/10p. I'm a ditz in the morning and worn out by the evening, so I'll have to do the Sunday prep for the week idea I see here. thanks everyone!



LUNA0622
Posts: 10
3/26/12 4:17 P

I do love the idea of cooking an extra portion the night before and having the "leftover" for lunch the next day. It also never fails: on days when I pack my own lunch, I totally miss the late afternoon low-energy crawl. When I eat out on the run, it hits me like a ton of bricks. So, although it takes a little bit of extra effort to make my lunch in the mornings, I know I won't regret it by mid-late afternoon!!



MMSANGSTER49
Posts: 621
3/26/12 11:25 A

I have gotten so used to packing on the go that I can do it at a moments notice. I tend to pack my cooler with fresh fruit and veggies and HB eggs because they can be eaten at room temperature.



BANDMOM2012
SparkPoints: (36,484)
Fitness Minutes: (6,211)
Posts: 1,929
3/26/12 11:08 A

I prepare almost everything the night before. Also, I am lucky to have a fridge at work that I can keep somethings ready to go.



WEEPINGANGEL74
Posts: 602
3/26/12 9:53 A

So many great ideas! I am trying to make meals/lunches ahead of time so I can just pack my insulated lunch bag in the morning and go. I actually do this with my breakfasts and lunches since I am not a morning person.



DIRTYBUNNY
SparkPoints: (34,005)
Fitness Minutes: (6,074)
Posts: 825
3/26/12 5:06 A

You have to set yourself up the night before. Do it before you brush your teeth and go to bed.



JUNIAATROME
SparkPoints: (49,012)
Fitness Minutes: (67,035)
Posts: 4,075
3/26/12 2:44 A

Right now, my DD packs my lunches. I don't know how long it's going to last, but it sure feels good as long as it does last. emoticon



NCLADY66
SparkPoints: (2,904)
Fitness Minutes: (437)
Posts: 4
3/25/12 8:37 P

I do alot of driving in my work so most of my lunches need to be portable. usually a sandwich on whole grain bread, fruit and always water. To keep everything cold, I put my Frozen water bottles in the bottom, then my sandwich fixings and then a small ice pack.... between the two my food stays nice and cold and a bonus, I have Ice cold water to drink. It is usually part thawed when I am ready to eat and stays nice and cold for my drive to the next client.



RUNNINGFORHIM15
SparkPoints: (536)
Fitness Minutes: (571)
Posts: 1
3/25/12 8:26 P

In the summer, when I work a lot, I always pack lunches the night before. I do it when I would be watching tv or something like that. I use a lot of plastic baggies and label them, like "Lunch 12:30" so I know when to eat it and such. The labeling helps so that you don't grab it before the designated time slot to eat. Also, I try to make them fun and colorful!



HLANIER4
SparkPoints: (8,854)
Fitness Minutes: (3,667)
Posts: 177
3/25/12 2:05 P

We are a family of 3, so I always cook enough for 5. This means I have enough to feed my son extras, if he is "starvating to death". But, this also means I have enough left over to pack my lunch for the next day, which means the next day it will be balanced as well as the night before.



TRUELOVE662010
Posts: 282
3/25/12 12:40 P

On days when my 8 week old lets me, I cook up a ton of meals, pre-portion them and then freeze them. In the morning I take one out and by lunchtime its thawed and ready to go! I have to plan ahead like that, because otherwise it''s dinnertime, she's screaming (Eva is colicky) and I have nothing ready to eat for my dinner. You know what happens then - BAD FOOD CHOICES.



DANEDANE1
Posts: 80
3/25/12 12:05 A

Trust me once you start you will be hooked. Walmart carries the jars and so do most grocery stores. My college kid is doing it too and loves it. She will throw one in her bag and not have to spend extra money on meals.



TRAVELNMUNCH
Posts: 103
3/24/12 10:24 P

When I worked and it was a very cold day this was my favorite. I put homemade beef veg soup in my thermos and I would stop at Wendy's and get a baked potato with chives and a drink. I opened up the potato and dumped my soup on it. This way it doesn't need any butter and it's hot and would always warm me up and it's super filling.

Now I sometimes take my own protein and stop at the drive up window at McDonald's and get a side salad, dump my protein on it and have a nice meal. I only eat one bread a day and I do that for breakfast. For bread I like Flat Out Flat Bread that's sold on the shelf in the Deli at Walmart and Mission low carb white flour tortilla which is 9 fiber and only 80 calories.



MENESTRELLO
Posts: 248
3/24/12 5:22 P

For people who prefer warm lunches, buy a food thermos or two and heat the food before going out. This way, there are no dangerous chemicals to worry about if heating it in the microwave and it can be eaten anywhere. I use the Thermos Stainless King food jar.

Prepare batches of food ahead of time. This does not necessary mean making an entire meal for leftovers, this means preparing staple foods in advance and combining them however a person pleases on-the-fly. I precook items such as lentils and brown rice, storing them separately. I wash and cut vegetables ahead of time. I make hummus from scratch every week and store it in the fridge as a dip for the vegetables. I keep vegetable scraps from the veggies to make my own vegetable broth. I just toss the scraps in water, cook them for about an hour and strain it. That can then be used for just about any soup. There are many such examples.

Tofu sucks of the flavors of just about everything, though I prefer to make my own, because it turns out much better than buying it at the store -- up to you.



YYCHEATHER
SparkPoints: (1,225)
Fitness Minutes: (456)
Posts: 2
3/24/12 1:17 P

A lot of what I have read below lacks protein and I for one need some protein at lunch to keep me going. I also don't like sandwiches and prefer something hot at lunch. When I cook supper, I try and cook things that I can easily put into rubbermaid containers and freeze and in the morning I grab a container out the freezer and voila, a quick and easy meal that I can microwave at work. I will often also take some veggies and maybe a piece of fruit to round it out.



JSTETSER
SparkPoints: (101,260)
Fitness Minutes: (88,439)
Posts: 4,381
3/23/12 6:52 P

When I make an evening salad, I make a salad for lunch as well.



WRITER6147
SparkPoints: (664)
Fitness Minutes: (1,435)
Posts: 4
3/23/12 11:55 A

I never thought of using chili as a healthy dressing! That is an AWESOME idea... Thank you!



KNDSKRAB
Posts: 20
3/23/12 9:27 A

Girl, buy snap green beans, squash and beans and peas to put on your salad with sunflower seeds. Anything you cook (as a veggie) tastes good on a salad raw!
But yes, keep lunch meat and bags of pre-cut lettuce in your fridge. Also, when you cook dinner, just cook too much and package into little tupperwares for the rest of the week. That is a grab and go!
I make this yummy chilli in a biiiig pot for just me and my husband because it is low cal and can be eaten for lunch all week. (P.S. chilli is good over salad with no dressing as a change up)
Go lean!!!!



NAESREALITY
Posts: 898
3/23/12 9:14 A

Wow, lots of great ideas, I really like the mason jar idea for salad, very creative. I would have never thought of that.



LENOREMM
SparkPoints: (10,790)
Fitness Minutes: (27,878)
Posts: 72
3/23/12 3:56 A

Salads based on leafy greens are not very portable, messy to eat, and not very filling - but I get tired of eating cherry tomatoes, carrot sticks and broccoli florets. I've invested in a cheap mandoline slicer, and I've been enjoying shredding different vegetables into matchsticks and making slaws. I usually dress them with a really simple vinaigrette, and they hold up well in the fridge and fill me up. It also feels like more of a meal than gnawing on big hunks of the same vegetables. Today, for example, I packed a slaw of shredded beet, apple, and carrot to go with my sandwich. I mix a largish batch of vinaigrette (just shake it up in in a Mason jar) so I have dressing for a whole week to use for both lunches and dinners. You can always tweak your slaw with nuts and seeds, cheese (feta is nice), and herbs.



WRITER6147
SparkPoints: (664)
Fitness Minutes: (1,435)
Posts: 4
3/22/12 8:15 P

I'm at school a lot and everything in the school cafe always looks so good and I want to eat that! Any solutions to foods that look just as tasty but are simple for me to pack?



BUZYGRAMMA
Posts: 26
3/22/12 7:55 P

Great ideas. Thanks, lunch is always a problem. Seems I am usually on the go that time of day.



BOBINVA
SparkPoints: (89,581)
Fitness Minutes: (79,805)
Posts: 4,521
3/22/12 5:46 P

For those days that I am always on the go I pack.

1 oz Almonds (about 23) (mid morning snack)
1 Kashi granola bar (mid afternoon snack)

and a wrap sandwich

1 tortilla
6 slices ham or turkey
1 slice swiss cheese
1 leaf iceburg lettuce

This way there is no mayo, dressing or anything else to go bad and I don't have to worry about drips.



ELISEWAY
SparkPoints: (6,741)
Fitness Minutes: (17,974)
Posts: 4
3/22/12 4:44 P

I really like homemade soup where I control the ingredients. My favorites are navy bean and split pea. It goes in a container- a tightly covered bowl or freezer bag, then freezer, then my work refrigerator. It is nice that I have access to a fridge and microwave at work. In the morning, I just grab a "bowl" of frozen soup, a few crackers (or keep them in my work desk) and I'm out the door. The soup is filling and I'm not snacking during the workday.



DUKIE52
SparkPoints: (1,804)
Fitness Minutes: (99)
Posts: 2
3/22/12 3:24 P

A lot of good ideas here, but I am often in the car driving when I have lunch time. I can't eat salad, soup, etc., and sandwiches tend to be high in carbs and bad deli meat. Any ideas out there?

When not in the car, I often take low-fat cottage cheese mixed with either canned peaches or pears, or tomatoes.



DFREITAG4
SparkPoints: (9,841)
Fitness Minutes: (23,351)
Posts: 152
3/22/12 2:07 P

Everyone had so many great ideas on here! I was getting into a bad cycle of lunch time meals these days. I walk two miles everyday at lunch time and then usually eat a DD egg white frat bread or Taco Bell Fresco Taco. Even though I stay within my calorie ranges I don't like eating fast food everyday.
These ideas are fantastic!



SPARKLINGME176
Posts: 2,417
3/22/12 1:34 P

Packing the night before is a GREAT idea, thanks! I travel a lot & this will help me stay out of the Mc Donalds DOUBLE FISH BURGER, (I use to think that was healthy!) on the road problem!



NEVER2LATE2SOAR
Posts: 89
3/22/12 10:50 A

When I need a lunch to go, I always pack it the night before and when I'm not hungry.I include a veggie, protein source, and fruit plus a healthy snack that I keep in my glove compartment for emergencies like getting stuck in traffic or being delayed somewhere. That way, I don't get too hungry before dinner. The hours between 3-5:30 are always hardest for me so I need to have a plan in place to deal with that.



LENOREMARIEG
SparkPoints: (639)
Fitness Minutes: (315)
Posts: 2
3/22/12 1:19 A

@DANEDANE1- That seems like a really fantastic way to do it! I never would have thought of using mason jars as lunchboxes. And you'd know it was watertight!

Edited by: LENOREMARIEG at: 3/22/2012 (01:20)


3CLICKSBELLA
Posts: 3
3/20/12 3:06 P

I've found lately that instead of waiting to put all the leftovers away, and make a separate container for lunch, its easier to make everyones plate while also starting to pack up leftovers right away as well. That way it keeps down on cleaning and I don't procrastinate about packing lunch before bed.



EIONTHEROAD
SparkPoints: (727)
Fitness Minutes: (1,236)
Posts: 33
3/20/12 1:09 P

This is when portioned out foods come in really handy. If you are physically "on the go" - I would get a little insulated lunch box - and fill it with things like - non-fat yogurt, cheese sticks,
carrot sticks, fruit, individual peanut butter portions, etc...make use you have plastic utensils on hand. If you are more like me - busy, but working everyday at an office where I have a little refrig - I buy at the being of the week - a container of cottage cheese, cans of soup, fruit, yogurt, rice cakes and have lots of things on hand to have when I am hungry and I don't have to worry about bringing things in everyday. I will usually bring in a big bottle of water, flavored drink mix - everyday and might throw in extra fruit etc... I haven't bought lunch at the office in over three years. I eat basically the same things all the time - but it takes the guess work out of it - and I always eat properly at the office. When you are prepared, you are more likely to do the right things for yourself.



BADAPPLE1213
Posts: 3
3/20/12 10:53 A

I purchased a watertight/airtight tupperware container with 3 divided sections inside. I usually fill it with finger foods: one fruit (grapes, berries, apples, or orange sections), one vegetable (baby carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, grape tomatoes, etc), and a small sandwich (pb or chicken or tuna) or hardboiled eggs or some other protein in the third. It's cheap, healthy, simple to put together, and I can eat it between classes.



MITCHDY
SparkPoints: (46,663)
Fitness Minutes: (57,500)
Posts: 841
3/20/12 7:26 A

I pack 2 pieces of fruit, dried apricots, almonds, and a meal bar... and spread it out...



BRELAN79
SparkPoints: (1,743)
Fitness Minutes: (1,310)
Posts: 7
3/19/12 9:27 P

Those little flavoured cans of tuna, or hummus with some whole wheatbreton crackers, some fruit, baby carrots, salad, a packet of oatmeal, and I usually keep a box of thinsation snacks on hand when I'm in a hurry. I try to prepare the night before because I hate having to rush in the morning..I would rather be spending the time having a healthy breakfast and not having to worry about lunch!



BABBEGURL
Posts: 2
3/19/12 5:46 P

But if you like tuna, salmon and even sardines. These are great quick grab and go meals. Add a little salt and pepper, serve on cracker or celery

Edited by: BABBEGURL at: 3/19/2012 (17:54)


SUSIEQINPERU
SparkPoints: (246)
Fitness Minutes: (330)
Posts: 2
3/19/12 3:03 P

For high protein snacks that don't contain soy or dairy I recommend the following:

- Pita bread wedges with hummus (creamy ground chickpea dip)
- Chopped vegetables with hummus
- Hardboiled eggs
- Openface tuna salad sandwich
- Tortilla with refried beans and fresh salsa
- Ham and egg omelet (omit the cheese) with salsa
- 3 Bean salad (green, kidney, black eyed peas with vinaigrette dressing)
- Salad with beans, hardboiled eggs, vegetables, etc



SCHMITZ84
Posts: 301
3/19/12 9:55 A

When I'm cooking dinner, I pack the leftovers immediately after the meal is over, which keeps us from going back for seconds...keeping our portion size down... and gives us lunch for the next day. Also, chopping fruits and veggies for snacks while I'm chopping for dinner anyway also cuts down on prep time later!



ARINTEZ
SparkPoints: (3,082)
Fitness Minutes: (3,084)
Posts: 296
3/18/12 11:01 P

I'm usually pretty good about packing a lunch and snacks for the morning and afternoon for work. But when I get home around 4, I usually start eating a bunch of food around the house. So I think I'm going to start having ALL my meals planned out and packed up for me, so that way I don't have an excuse to mindlessly eat after work.



YOZEE1
SparkPoints: (5)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 1
3/18/12 7:40 P

Im usually rushed in the morning, so I also try to pack lunch the night before. I can better think out my choices.



FURMANK
SparkPoints: (4,011)
Fitness Minutes: (9,153)
Posts: 16
3/18/12 1:45 P

I try to pack a salad in a lunch box the night before. I try to make sure there are things I like in it, like quinoa, basil, baby tomatoes, some feta cheese, etc. If I don't get around to doing this the night before then I invariably end up eating junk food in the cafeteria.



JALEPENOANN
SparkPoints: (104,701)
Fitness Minutes: (109,050)
Posts: 4,941
3/17/12 10:04 P

I always pack my lunch the night before while I am cleaning up after dinner. That way I get a good salad and a wrap or good sandwich filled with veggies.

How about egg salad for a high protein sandwich filling. You can also make great sandwich fillings out of beans like hummus or a black bean spread.




LIBR@RYL@DY
Posts: 6,327
3/17/12 5:26 P

I have made 5 sandwiches on the weekends and frozen them. It's a quick grab & go & they thaw by noon.



KMACHE
SparkPoints: (10,229)
Fitness Minutes: (3,713)
Posts: 270
3/17/12 3:17 P

I recently purchased some plastic containers from the Dollar Tree. I got two sandwich containers for $1, and they were made by glad lock. I think they are going to hold up pretty well. I'm doing my best to take my lunch everyday, but I have some go to options in mind for the days that I forget or just don't feel like it. For instance, I know that there is a Wendy's close to my job, so I will go there and have one of their salads. They are delicious! I also keep a few healthy choice meals in the freezer so that I can grab one if I forgot to make my typical salad or sandwich the night before.



SMROBE01
SparkPoints: (7,647)
Fitness Minutes: (12,014)
Posts: 3
3/17/12 2:13 P

Does anyone have good ideas for high protein snacks that don't contain soy or dairy. I tend to overdo the nuts and nutbutters.



 
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