As part of my non-running goals for 2014 I decided to start making a serious effort at planning my meals and doing my food prep ahead of time. All things considered, it’s been going quite well. I’ve had stellar weeks where all the next week’s meals are prepped and in the freezer and then I’ve had weeks where I’ve simply had all of my planning and shopping done but no prep. Either way, it’s saved me a lot of time and money too.
In the past couple weeks I’ve even discovered a whole new secret weapon in this meal planning and prep game. And it’s so amazing that I wanted to share in case you can make use of it too.
Are you ready? It’s just three little words…
Grocery delivery service. Oh yeah baby, it’s ah-mazing!
One of our local grocery stores (Thrifty Foods) offers online grocery shopping and my husband suggested giving it a try after hearing from his co-workers who use it.
I was resistant at first, thinking, “I’m quite capable of buying my own groceries, I don’t need to pay someone else to do it!” And it’s true I don’t need someone else to do it but then I got thinking about the advantages and figured I’d give it a try. Game changer.
- I can do my shopping in my jammies, any time of day (this is big)
- I can add items to my online order throughout the week (no more shopping lists!)
- I can browse online recipes and add ingredients to my list as I’m planning meals
- I can choose between in-store pickup or home delivery (day-of or a future date)
- No more dragging the kids through the grocery store
- No more shopping cart full of kids and no room for groceries
- No more impulse junk food purchases
- I’m saving money because I’m only buying the stuff I need, when I need it
- Grocery shopping takes minutes instead of hours
- At-your-door-delivery with a smile (well so far he’s always been smiling)
- $4.95 for in-store pickup (everything is waiting for you at the front)
- $7.95 for home delivery
- $9.95 for same-day home delivery
If you happen to live in the Lower Mainland or Vancouver Island, you might want to consider giving Thrifty Foods online shopping a try. However, even if you don’t live here I’d highly recommend checking with some of your favourite grocery stores to see if they offer a similar service.
What about the downsides? Well, I’m a big comparison shopper and always love a good deal and by purchasing all my groceries in one place, sometimes I’m paying a bit more than what I might be able to find elsewhere. However, one of my main motives in switching to this service was the convenience and saving of time and I have to be realistic, I’d rather pay a little bit more on some items in exchange for saving all that time and effort each week. So far anyway, my grocery bills have gone down because I’m seriously only buying what I need so I’ve barely even noticed that some items cost more.
Anyhow, aside from the convenience I am so impressed by how awesome online groceries fit in when you’re meal planning. Each week, I sit down and go through the online recipes I’ve tagged and as I’m picking the things I want to make all I have to do is have my grocery order open and add the items as I go. Easy peasy.
So yes, I am pretty much in love with my local grocery store now and smile to myself every week when I hit ‘Submit’ and know that my grocery shopping is done. We are all so busy with family life, training and races, who wouldn’t want to buy themselves some extra time if they can? I thought maybe if I shared you might be able to find a similar service where you live and be able to enjoy some of the same benefits.
PS This is going to come in seriously handy once our DietBet starts next week – no more moments of weakness in the candy aisle! The pot is growing, feel free to join us!