Back to Work!

Today’s my first day at my exciting new job! I was never a boy scout, but I am prepared. It’s been a while since I’ve worked, and I wanted to set some habits back into place right from the get-go. So I packed a gym bag and woke up early to exercise before work (that’s the plan, at least… I confess that I’m writing this Sunday evening).

I also packed a healthy lunch. In fact, I spent hours yesterday prepping food for the work week. And I’m not joking around. I literally spent hours. You must be wearing your lucky pants… because I took pictures!

It all started at Sprouts, which is quickly becoming my favorite supermarket, thanks to its prices and its proximity to my gym (two blocks away).

There’s no gentle way to put this:

I bought a shit ton of produce. For only the second time in history (see the first time here), I had to divide my produce haul in half to photograph it.

First up, the veggies:

From left to right, in columns: red leaf lettuce, kale, baby carrots, a green pepper, cucumbers, 2 white onions, radishes, 2 heads of celery, 2 broccoli crowns, a bag of mini bell peppers, a sweet potato, roma tomatoes, 4 zucchini, 2 yellow squash.

Among the great deals: $1 for both heads of celery, 88 cents for the red leaf lettuce, 63 cents for the onions, 49 cents for the radishes.

Now, the fruit:

From left to right, in columns: 3 navel oranges, bananas, 2 lbs strawberries, 2 raspberry containers, 3 kiwi, 4 red plums, 5 braeburn apples, 6 apricots, 2 red pears, 2 blueberry containers, 3 yellow peaches, cherries.

More deals: Blueberries and raspberries: $1.50 a package. 72 cents for the apricots. 25 cents per kiwi.

All the produce – fruits and veggies combined – cost roughly $42 bucks. That’s why I love Sprouts!

When I got home, I set about cleaning, chopping, and prepping all of it. I wanted everything to be in perfect grab-‘n’-go condition, so making and packing lunches all week would be a breeze. For the fruit, I hulled the strawberries and transferred them, as well as the cherries and other berries, into Tupperware. All the rest of the fruit got washed (excluding bananas and oranges) and was piled in my fruit bowl:

As for the veggies: the kale and red leaf lettuce got washed and spun dry (thanks to my Spin ‘N Stor bags). I put together big bags of raw veggies that would go great in my lunch bag – and that involved washing and chopping celery, zucchini, yellow squash, cucumber, radish, broccoli, and adding in the baby carrots and mini bell peppers. The rest of the veggies got washed and sorted into special Tupperware containers that will extend their freshness. When I was done with everything, my table was covered with washed, prepped, and ready-to-go fruits and veggies!

PLUS, I washed and chopped more veggies and loaded up my crockpot to make more grab-‘n’-go meals… but that’s tomorrow’s post!

DOUBLE-PLUS, I washed and chopped even more veggies to make my lunch: a big ol’ salad! (But I didn’t eat it until after all my work was done.)

(Red leaf lettuce, kale, roma tomato, baby cucumbers, broccoli, scallion, soy bacon bits, lite cilantro/lime dressing.)

Doing all this work, plus cleaning my kitchen afterward, took over two hours. And completely worth it. I don’t know yet if this level of commitment is sustainable in the weeks and months to come, but, like I’ve already said, I want to re-enter the work force on the right foot.

I’m satisfied that I’m doing just that.

Keep it up, David!

17 Responses to Back to Work!

  1. vanessa says:

    i do love my Lucky Lucky Pants!!

    i hope you have a great first day 4avid. 🙂

    p.s. love your pics.

  2. Erin says:

    OK – question (and congrats on the new job!). I am PSYCHO about eating fruit/veggies that are not old. Ex. I like my bananas green (as soon as they have a brown spot, I can’t eat them), I like my fruit sour (NOT ripe) and hard, and my baby carrots better not be the least bit slimy or they’re donzo. I work two jobs and am very busy, and would love to prepare my food on Sunday for the work week. Can you please do an update on the quality of what you packed (especially the veggies in plastic bags) on FRIDAY? Then I can hopefully see that I too can get away with cutting things up for the week! I find that I eat very healthy Mon – Wed but by Thur-Fri get lazy about cutting up my veggies each night.


    • Erin, you and I are nearly identical when it comes to this. I have a FoodSaver and vacuum most of the veggies (and sone if the fruit) I buy for this very reason. It really keeps the moisture out and the spoilage takes WAY longer. You might look into getting one. It’s KEY to my healthy eating.

    • David says:

      Hey Erin – I’ll try to remember to do an update. Do you use any tools to help you keep food fresh longer? Most of the containers in the photo are FridgeSmart Tupperwares, which have vents that allow the gases that speed up browning/rotting to escape. They really work to extend the life of produce. Read more about them here. And the bags along the right, with the assorted veggies, are special green bags that also allow those gases to escape – they work too. Click here to see a similar product (mine are a different brand). I’ve relied on the bags and Tupperware heavily for months… very rarely do I end up throwing anything away!

    • David says:

      And the FoodSaver vacuum is a good idea, too! Thanks, Glitters!

  3. Mom says:

    I find on my work days, when I’m busy, it is easier to eat less. The hardest part is the treats in the office!!
    Good luck with your job!!

  4. Mary Ann says:

    WOW – impressive; all the washing and chopping BUT the only way to insure you’ll actually eat all this stuff before it goes bad.

  5. Sarah says:

    Good luck on your first day!

  6. Jen says:

    I see quite a bit of fruit in your veggie photo!

  7. Archibald Leach says:

    Have a Great first day!!

  8. Good luck on your first day! 🙂

  9. Arlene Hittle says:

    I’d say you did a great job. Hope your first day was fantastic — on both the food and job fronts.

  10. Nicolette says:

    David — hope the first day was terrific. And that every day after. Well, that unrealistic — they call it work and that is why they pay you — but hope you enjoy this new venture!

  11. Caron says:

    I love Sprouts too. I spend most of my grocery bucks there. 🙂

  12. Holly says:

    Congrats on your first day! I hope it was a good one. That’s one heck of a produce haul for $40. Good for you! I belong to a produce co-op and it saves a ton. Farmer’s market is the next best thing.

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