Apr. 19. 2017
Written By:
McKel (Hill) Kooienga
McKel Kooienga, MS, RDN, LDN

McKel Kooienga, MS, RDN, LDN

Founder of Nutrition Stripped® and the Mindful Nutrition Method™

Sunday is the most important day of the week. This is a bold statement, I get it. But hear me out, it has to do with…


Super Sunday

I get emails weekly, at times daily, from you guys in the NS community about how I “do it all?”. First off, I have a fantastic team who supports me along the way that I’m deeply grateful for, and the next most important thing is that I know my limits and how I function optimally from a health standpoint to a productive machine for running a business. I hope that by sharing my perspective on how I juggle a growing business but also maintain a healthy lifestyle that requires efficiency, productivity, focus, and dedication that you’ll be able to use this information as a guide for applying in your own life to master anything you put your mind to!

By planning your week ahead, you not only save time in the long-run, but you’ll go into Monday feeling like YOU have a hold on the week, not the other way around. Combine this process with a solid morning routine and you’ll be unstoppable while simultaneously giving yourself much needed space to breathe, live, and have more fun with less stress.

First up, let’s talk getting organized. I love productivity tools from journals, apps on my phone, desktop apps, extensions, programs, etc. which I’ll dive in deeper since these require an entire post! A simple pen + paper or dry erase board can do the trick for helping you not only plan out your work week, workouts, appointments, but your meals for the week (i.e. how you’re going to nourish that bod to keep you energized enough to carry out all the incredible work and fun that’s to be had for the week ahead). This sounds odd to some, but I use both pen + paper and online productivity programs to keep me on task for both my personal and professional goals, to-do lists, meetings, etc. I think it’s the combination of seeing it easily online/or on the phone and having the connection of writing it out on paper helps me remember the task and plan everything out best. I’ll typically start the “prep” part for work at the end of day Friday by tasking myself and game planning the upcoming week so I know exactly what I’m getting into, what needs to be done, and goals to achieve. Inevitably things pop up with work so planning ahead like this gives me ample space to deal with projects with the team, articles/interviews that may arise, meetings, client sessions, etc.

I challenge you to get honest and ask yourself, how you work? Do you thrive off structure or do you need more flexibility? Do you like a strict routine or prefer some wiggle room for the unexpected? Asking yourself these questions can help you determine your plan for the week ahead. For me, I need routine and structure since I run a business with what feels like a million constant moving parts. This helps me stick to what I need to accomplish while feeling really centered, focused, and healthy (i.e. not burned out)!

For meal planning, I always recommend Sunday to plan for the week ahead and write it all out so you have a guideline to follow. Some of you may want to just follow a plan with ease and that’s totally cool too – that’s the whole reason I created the Guide to Master Meal Planning! I like to keep my meal prep plan consistent and VERY simple during the week and then switch it up the week after, still allowing for flexibility, nights out, dinner dates, etc. If you’re that way too, just have your meal plan chart reflect that. Dry erase boards are my favorite for mapping out meals and meal planning because you can make a DIY meal planning chart, or if you’re in the Guide to Master Meal Planning you have these already that you can fill out and print off or print off blank ones for each week! These charts are great to use for yourself or if you have someone else/family that you’re cooking with so everyone stays on track.

Below is a sample meal plan to help you eat healthy, save time, and feel really energize to do more of what you love (rather than wasting time googling recipes or on Pinterest – ha!). You’ll note that this is SIMPLE and it’s supposed to be (I personally follow this rule of simplicity). I believe we don’t need to eat 20 different recipes a week. We can get abundant nutrition from about 5 recipes that have a variety of whole foods throughout the week and then switch it up the week after. Plus simplicity helps you get rid of decision fatigue constantly thinking about what recipe to make out of millions on the internet or what to cook. Keep it simple, guys!

Try this SIMPLE meal plan guide:


  1. Breakfast: Overnight Oats
  2. Lunch: Nourish Bowl with Baked Citrus Tempeh
  3. Dinner: Frittata with 1/2 an avocado


  1. Breakfast: Stripped Green Smoothie
  2. Lunch: Frittata (may add some roasted veggies on the side)
  3. Dinner: 10 Minute Stir Fry with Baked Citrus Tempeh


  1. Breakfast: Overnight Oats
  2. Lunch: Big ole salad with Baked Citrus Tempeh
  3. Dinner: Nourish Bowl with scrambled eggs


  1. Breakfast: Stripped Green Smoothie
  2. Lunch: Frittata with any extra veggies from the week
  3. Dinner: 10 Minute Stir Fry with scrambled eggs


  1. Breakfast: Overnight Oats
  2. Lunch: Nourish Bowl with scrambled eggs
  3. Dinner: 10 Minute Stir Fry with Baked Citrus Tempeh

SNACKS FOR THE WEEK: Energy Almond Butter Balls, veggies and hummus, fruit, nuts, seeds, kombucha, protein shakes, the list goes on! Just listen to your body and what feels good.

What my batch cooking plan might look like:

Cook on Sunday:

  • Roast veggies for Nourish Bowl
  • Cook big batch of quinoa or brown rice for Stir Fry
  • Assemble Overnight Oats
  • Baked Citrus Tempeh
  • Frittata
  • Prep veggies for smoothie and stir fry (wash, cut, store to save even more time in the week)

Cook Before Eating:

  • Eggs for nourish bowl
  • Blend Stripped Green Smoothie (or I may make a batch and blend again before serving – it usually lasts 2-3 days)

For example, you can mix up your meals easily by using different veggies in the Nourish Bowl, Stir Fry, smoothies, and I always rotate sauces to give it some flair. A Nourish Bowl can take on so many different flavors depending on what spices, herbs, proteins, veggies, grains/starches, and healthy fats you make with it.

It’s not about perfection, it’s about simplification.

It may seem like a lot, but I promise the more you start to meal plan and batch cook, you’ll get faster and it’ll become even simpler. I can usually time it right and be out of the kitchen in 1 hour. Seriously! I’ve gotten batch cooking on Sunday down to a science and it has been SO helpful in saving me time and energy throughout the week. I wanted to share my method with you with tools like pre-made meal plans, batch cooking plans, grocery shopping lists, videos, and ebooks, which is why I created the NS Guide to Master Meal Planning. I created it to give you everything you need to master meal planning. Plus there is an incredibly supportive, totally awesome community in the Guide to Master Meal Planning. If you want to join us, get on the list! Enrollment is opening next week and the list will know first!

Happy meal planning! I’d love to hear your meal planning stories, comment below to keep the chat going 🙂

xx McKel

Photo by Kelsey Cherry