I Used Simple Meal Prep to Lose 30 Pounds and Keep It Off

Meal planning tips that actually work!

The Best Post-Workout Recipes For Weight Loss

Have you ever felt intimidated by the idea of starting a weight loss journey? The stigma that comes with weight loss is steeped in one-size-fits-all diet plans. Don’t think you have to deprive yourself of delicious meals, starve yourself to see the pounds drop, and work out for hours every single day. It doesn’t have to be that way. I used this simple meal prep to lose 30 pounds, and I’ve been able to keep the weight off for almost 10 years.

How I Did It (and How You Can Too!)

roasted vegetable quinoa bowl

It was my approach that inspired me to co-found Skinny Ms., a company focused on helping women lose weight and keep it off. By eating whole foods, implementing portion control, and exercising regularly, I was successful. Even walking 30 minutes daily is a doable way to get started with an exercise plan. Build upon this daily ritual as you begin to shed pounds.

I’m often asked how I’ve kept 30 pounds off for such a long time, and the basis of my journey is what Skinny Ms. is all about the key to maintaining my weight loss long-term, and what I believe is the most accessible and tried and true approach for others, was to create healthy habits that have become part of my routine.

I want to share some basic insight into my approach so you can understand not only what Skinny Ms. represents but just how simple it is to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Before I get started, you should know that while it may be simple, it doesn’t always mean it’s easy. Getting started, staying consistent, and knowing how to allow yourself a treat here and there is all about practicing mindfulness, to which I invite you to take a look at how mindful meditation can help you in your weight loss goals.

My Weight Loss Journey Cheat Sheet

Write down the following tips in a weight loss journey diary, and each week, ask yourself if you completed them. If you’re not seeing results, it may be because you’re not following the basic rules of weight loss.

Let the following tips serve as your cheat sheet for staying on track with as little amount of “rules” as possible:

  • Exercise three to four times each week. Increase five to six times per week when you’re ready to bump it up.
  • Eat three small meals and one to two healthful snacks each day.
  • Hydrate with plenty of plain water.
  • Manage portion sizes.

What you do for exercise is going to be different from what I or your friend do. However, it is important to do a combination of weight training and cardio.

What you eat for weight loss and proper health will not always be the same as me or others because you have your own tastes.

Make Eating Healthy Fun and Inspired

If there’s one thing about eating healthy that I can recommend, it’s to make it a mouth-watering experience. You don’t have to eat a bland piece of chicken with steamed broccoli for dinner if that doesn’t sound good to you. You can eat rich, creamy, saucy, and sweet foods using healthy, wholesome ingredients. So long as you keep your portion control in check, you will be surprised at how delicious eating healthy can be.

To maintain my weight loss, I have committed to planning menus filled with clean-eating foods that are nutrient-rich.

Meal Prep to Lose 30 Pounds: Daily Menu Sample

skinny white chicken enchiladas

Tips for Creating Your Own Successful Meal Plans for Weight Loss

Remember that healthy eating plans are not, as previously mentioned, one size fits all. To stick to a weight loss plan, it has to make sense for you, from the workouts you take on to the foods you eat. If you hate zucchini, why would you incorporate it? Don’t set yourself up for failure. Set yourself up for success! Remember these three helpful hints:

1. Find Tasty, Healthy Swaps for Your Favorite Foods.

No need to deprive your taste buds when you’re working to keep weight off for good. Instead, plan your menu with healthier alternatives to your favorite foods. We love making comfort foods skinny in our kitchen!

Meal Prep to Lose 30 Pounds: Daily Menu Sample 2

peanut chickpea buddha bowl

2. Plan Ahead.

One of the biggest stumbling blocks for women when it comes to long-term weight maintenance is the dreaded busy day. You get caught up in caring for kids or aging parents. Or perhaps that meeting runs twice as long as expected. The next thing you know, you’re eating anything and everything within arm’s reach.

Don’t let your busy days work against you. If you know you’re going to be tied up, just plan ahead. If you set aside time each week to plan meals and snacks, you’ll be prepared.

For example, if you know a day is going to be filled with appointments, errands, and other to-dos, plan a slow cooker meal that allows you to prep in the morning and come home to a healthy meal.

The incredible aroma that fills up your home as you enter the door after a long day is enough to make you feel grateful for thinking ahead.

Check out healthy meal planning resources to give you an accessible outline, like these 6 Slow Cooker Summer Dinners or these 5 Wraps for Easy On-the-Go Meals.

Meal Prep to Lose 30 Pounds: Daily Menu Sample 3

Mexican style quinoa salad for meal prepping

3. Keep Your Meal Plans Fresh.

Even meal plans that work can bore the taste buds and nudge you toward unhealthy choices. Instead of sticking to the same foods week after week, freshen up the menu with at least one new dish each week. Not only does it keep eating from becoming boring, but it also introduces nutritional variety to the body. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive our latest recipes to help shed pounds.

Meal Prep to Lose 30 Pounds: Daily Menu Sample 4

Meal Prep to Lose 30 Pounds Menu

Healthy eating can be Instagram-worthy meals that melt in your mouth, don’t break the calorie bank, give you energy, satisfy your cravings, and help you shed pounds. Whether you want to use meal prep to lose 30 pounds or 100 pounds, follow the healthy menu planning tips above and be patient with yourself—you got this, girl!

Check out our Facebook page and follow us on Pinterest to discover tasty recipes, clean-eating tips, and healthy lifestyle resources.

It’s always the right time to tone and tighten! Visit Skinny Ms. Fitness for the workout resources and tips you need to feel fab in your skin.


This post may include affiliate links.

Gale Compton

Gale co-founded SkinnyMs. with a goal to provide women with delicious recipes, fitness routines, and ways to reach their ideal weight. Gale has been featured on the Today Show in which she won a cook off for the best Lasagna. Be sure to search for her winning recipe, Skinny Lasagna Rolls.

Guided by her firm belief in healthy eating and the power of exercise, Gale has written two cookbooks and several fitness ebooks. She earned her Fitness Training Certification from, National Exercise & Sports Trainers Association. Gale loves to run with her dog Maggie and has completed numerous half-marathons.

More by Gale


  1. I want to do healthy meal plans but I work in an industrial shop from 6am-4:30pm I need to be able to make things on the weekend for the week if you have any tips for me on that it would be great! Thank you.

    1. Hi Colette, Here’s what I do for make-ahead meals:

      – Cook quinoa and brown rice on Sunday, enough to last the week. These two are perfect for so many recipes, or by themselves.
      – Dice a lot of veggies and either refrigerate or freeze, depending on the veggie.
      – Cook a big batch of Slow Cooker Chili or Black Bean Soup, or another favorite. This will last the week.
      – Write down my weekly menu and follow it to the letter.
      – I only cook things that are super healthy and that I truly love to eat, and that can be easily reheated.

      Hope this helps! 🙂

  2. I love this meal plan you shared. I am going to try your ideas you gave Colette, even though I’m retired my husband does Not like veggies or healthier things. He is strictly protein low carb I have 2 herniated disc awaiting surgery in a month so I do what I can on exercise. Thank You so much for sharing.

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