It’s National Pack Your Lunch Day, and we’ve got everything you need to get started. From meal prep tips and recipes to containers and lunch cooler bags, packing your lunch just reached a whole new level.
If I had a time machine and could travel to any time imaginable, I know in my heart I’d probably just set that thing to lunchtime ~ Sam Thorpe
What’s for Lunch?
Lunch! It’s an old word shortened for modern day use that originally meant a small, light snack eaten between meals. In Samuel Johnson’s dictionary of 1775, he says lunch is “as much food as one’s hand can hold.” Our definition of lunch is as much food as your Fitmark meal bag can hold!
The Lunch Hour
The lunch hour was created at the turn of the 20th century during the industrial revolution for workers to take a midday break to fuel up for the second shift. ‘Lunch Hour’ was a generous term because most people had only half an hour or less to eat something.
Here’s a Tip: Take the guesswork out of eating and create a list of healthy food options for your packed lunches.
In the name of convenience, the vending machine was born in 1902, giving way to the first Horn and Hardart automated lunch machine in 1912. Then came the street vendor with hotdogs, pretzels and Jamaican beef patties.
With the invention of sliced, wrapped bread in 1928, the beloved sandwich rose to the top of the charts as the number one choice for packed lunches. Sandwiches were a quick and convenient way to eat lunch and peanut butter and jam soon became the nation’s favorite.
Here’s a tip: Instead of jam with your peanut butter, try fresh blueberries.
From here, lunch really took off and school lunches became the norm, as did the power lunch. But it’s the packed lunch that remains the most popular. It’s also the healthiest way to stay on track with your fitness and nutrition goals.
Packing your lunch keeps you away from fast, convenient food you can pick up on the run like hotdogs, pizza and burgers. With a little planning and preparation, lunch can be just as healthy and nutritious as the rest of your diet, and it’s a great place to start meal prepping. Here are a few tips
Meal Prep Tips
- Write out what you’re going to eat for the week THEN write your grocery list.
- Don’t grocery shop on an empty stomach!
- Don’t be afraid to start small! Even just lunches and snacks can be a big help.
- Start simple. Don’t over complicate things right out of the gate. Stick to some of your simple favorites you can cook in bulk.
- Invest in extra food containers and a cooler bag like the Shield to put your food in. Having the containers to put my meal prep in is actually super motivating.
- Buy low sodium seasonings. It’s an easy way to spice up your food without having to do much! Flavorgod seasonings are a go-to of mine.
- Pick a schedule you can stick to & try to force yourself to stick to it for 3-6 weeks. Once you do that, it will start to become a habit and you won’t even think twice about skipping your meal prep!
While the lunch hour continues to be a defining moment in our workday, it has evolved since the sandwich and can now be almost anything you want it to be. As long as you can pack it into a food container, lunch is whatever makes you happy. With our Bento Boxes (shown above), you can use the separate compartments to portion out your macros for the day or get creative with dips and salads. There are no limits, just endless possibilities to get healthy with your packed lunch.
Meal Prep Recipe Idea
Make a batch of meat patties from extra lean ground turkey. Then you can create your own healthy burgers for lunch or use them in burritos or tacos. Lots of options when you have your proteins all cooked and ready to go.
National Pack Your Lunch Day celebrates your healthy options and the opportunity to eat something high quality and homemade. So get packing!