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How I Prep For Work

April 5, 2011

Hitting the gym before work and bringing my breakfast, lunch, and snack with me each day means one thing: PREP WORK. Each day when I get home from work, I immediately start getting things organized for the next day. I make and pack my meals, pick out my outfit, and lay out my gym clothes. It definitely takes a little bit of effort, but I’m used to the routine now. To me it is totally worth it since it allows me to start my day with sweaty “me” time and eat meals that make me feel great.

Here’s how I do it:

My gym bag has some permanent residents: my magazines, shower flip flops, and a plastic bag containing shampoo, lotion, a razor, and hair products.

At the beginning of each week I put in my makeup bag, hair straightener, and hair brush. I actually only shower at the gym during the week, so it’s not a problem to keep these things in my gym bag.

Then after I pick out my outfit for the next day, I top the bag off with my shoes and undergarments. All set!

My clothes for the next day get hung on a hanger in my closet for easy grabbage in the morning. I generally choose my outfit at the same time that I’m changing out of my work clothes from the current day. I’m already naked, so I might as well start trying stuff on.

The final clothing step is laying out my gym clothes on my dresser. This way I don’t have to think at 6am.

The food part of my preparation usually happens when I’m making dinner. If something is simmering or in the microwave I have time to throw some raw oats and chia seeds into a container, pack up some veggies and hummus for a snack, and grab an apple and a banana. My lunch is usually leftovers from dinner so I put those into tupperware when I’m finished cooking. Then it all goes into my nerdy lunchbox.

In the morning I stick two ice packs  (that I keep in my freezer) into the bottom of the lunchbox and it keeps my food cold all day. No need for the mini fridge at work!

I’ve gotten this routine down to a science and it really only takes about 1o to 15 minutes each night. Once I’m prepped for the next day I feel like I can finally crash on the couch and enjoy the night. It definitely requires some forethought, but being able to get in some sweaty me-time before work and knowing that I have healthy meals to eat is very much worth it to me.

  • Do you do any prep-work to get ready for the next day?
20 Comments leave one →
  1. April 5, 2011 11:21 am

    My routine is pretty similar. Since I have to walk to the gym and then take public transit to work, I try to consolidate as much as possible so I’m not carrying everything I own. I’ve simplified my “beauty” routine so much so that I can still look good and yet not carry every product I own. All about finding a good routine.

  2. April 5, 2011 11:24 am

    I only work out before work 1 or 2 days per week, and I haven’t figured out yet if it’s faster for me to shower there or to go home (since it’s halfway to work). One morning I felt SO prepared, including hanging up my dress so that it wouldn’t wrinkle in my bag.

    Got up on time, made it out the door, did my workout – then realized my dress was still hanging on it’s hanger at HOME.

    Definitely not efficient on that day unless I came to work naked. Needless to say, I’ve been showering at home where my clothes are easily accessible!

  3. April 5, 2011 11:58 am

    grabbage 😉

  4. April 5, 2011 12:03 pm

    I love how you prep the night before and I think your nerdy lunchbox is adorable I want one like that!

  5. Colleen @ The Lunchbox Diaries permalink
    April 5, 2011 12:17 pm

    We have pretty much the same routine – and the exact same lunchbox! 🙂

  6. April 5, 2011 12:25 pm

    One of my goals for this month is to pick out my clothes the night before. I have such a problem deciding what to wear every day and it’s a big time drain for me. I can pack a lunch for the next day and prep my breakfast without even thinking about it, but actually laying out my clothes/bag/books never happens…

  7. April 5, 2011 12:44 pm

    I tend to do all my prep in the morning–although I’m not sold that that’s the most efficient way. Especially on days I’m late to work! I might have to try out some of these methods. Especially picking out clothes. I’d much rather deal with this the night before than in my morning stupor!!

  8. April 5, 2011 12:59 pm

    I do virtually no prep in advance, and I am a hot mess in the morning. I also fail to do half the things I wanted, have no time to shower, wear mismatched socks, etc. So I would say your method works better than mine.

  9. April 5, 2011 1:01 pm

    Wow you are super organized, girlie! Love it.

  10. Peanut Butter Bandit permalink
    April 5, 2011 1:15 pm

    I do two things the night before: pack my lunch and cut up fruit to have with my breakfast (especially mango! I’m way too tired and lazy to peel/slice up a mango in the morning). I also sometimes make two portions for dinner- one to have for dinner and one to have the next day for lunch. I got some of those glass tupperware containers for easy re-heating on campus. That helps a LOT!

  11. April 5, 2011 1:40 pm

    I always make/prep my lunch the night before too. It’s just too crazy to do in the morning when I’m in a rush!

  12. Fresh & Fit permalink
    April 5, 2011 1:47 pm

    I love that lunch bag. It looks like it fits everything! Where did you get it? or what is the brand? I have been looking for a good insolated lunch bag for awhile.

  13. atastelife permalink
    April 5, 2011 1:56 pm

    Routine is key for 5am workouts. The night after, I prep my coffee pot and lunch for the next day if I won’t be able to come home during lunch. I also set out my clothes in the bathroom for the gym. I even go as far as laying out my contacts. As soon as the alarm goes off at 4:26am (I’m weird and have never set an alarm for a “normal” time – _:30 or _:00) I go straight to the kitchen to press the “on” button. After that, all I have to do is get dressed and fly out the door…Once you have a routine, your mornings will forever be changed. I’m able to get up and out of the door in 8 minutes…just in time to make the 5am class.

  14. April 5, 2011 3:09 pm

    Usually the extent of my prep work is packing a lunch or maybe thinking about my outfit while I lie in bed the night before!

  15. Abby permalink
    April 5, 2011 7:25 pm

    My routine is pretty dang close to the same as yours! I love that lunch box. If you want to see nerdy you should see mine. It is like my dad’s old work hand-me-down. lol. I need to hunt for a new cute one that is big enough to fit my breakfast and lunch!

  16. April 5, 2011 8:03 pm

    wow – i love how organized you are! it really is just a little planning that makes such a difference!

  17. April 5, 2011 8:34 pm

    I’m just in my 3rd week of my new routine of waking up early to get my exercise in (as opposed to getting it in randomly & sporadically throughout the week), but this post makes me want to become more efficient at it!! I should at least be laying my workout clothes the night before…such a small step at night will save me several minutes of fumbling in the dark the next morning!!

  18. April 5, 2011 9:11 pm

    I used to prep my lunches and sometimes breakfasts depending on how early I was working.
    If i work out in the morning I lay out my gym clothes on my kitchen table so i don’t wake my fiance up or have to stumble around in our dark room .

    These days I live so close to work i can have breakfast at home and i get to come home for lunch so all i do is prep the coffee pot at night… Your schedule is MUCH more time consuming!

  19. April 5, 2011 9:12 pm

    Thanks for this post! Love it! Is so funny. I was actually going to send you an email the other day to ask you how you manage to hit the gym before work each day–it’s something ive been trying to do for a while now but couldnt figure out an easy way to go about it. Talk about the law of attraction! You answered my question before I even asked 🙂 This post definitely helped tons! Thank you 🙂

  20. Sarah @ healthygirlrunning permalink
    April 5, 2011 9:44 pm

    Wow, you’re so good! I usually tell myself I’m gonna prep for the next day, then I find myself laying in bed remebering that I forgot to get my stuff together! Oops! Luckily I don’t have to think too much in the morning because I get to wear super fashionable scrubs every day! Yay me! Trust me, I’d much rather be wearing some cute outfit like the ones you wear! 🙂

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