I Am a Nerd

Monday Workout:
Rest day – walk 45 mins on treadmill to loosen up my legs

Tuesday Workout
Run – 4 miles (I was supposed to bike or swim, but sometimes I don’t feel like getting the bike all ready to go or dragging my tuchas to the pool:/ With running I just grab my sneakers and iPod and I’m out the door!)
Well, I have a confession to make to you guys–I’m a SUPER-duper nerd when it comes to grocery shopping!!  I know, I already told you how much I love going to the grocery store, but I’m getting ready to let you in on my CRAZY grocery shopping ritual.  Please be warned that you may never look at me the same after this, and I understand if you no longer want to be friends with a crazy person!

First of all, I take my grocery shopping SERIOUSLY.  I prepare for grocery shopping like I’m going into battle, and let me tell you–I take no prisoners!  Here is my grocery shopping battle rhythm (I just came from military strategy class, so please forgive my loose and silly comparisons):

1.  Know Your Supply Levels.
If at any point you need to go into battle, you need to know your supply levels.  We keep a running grocery list on the fridge, and any time we are low on something it gets written on that list.  If we’re running low but won’t need more for a while, it gets put on the list with a “if on sale” after it, so I know it only needs to be purchased if it’s on sale–it’s not at emergency levels yet.

2.  Know Your Enemy.
Before going into battle you have to know who your enemy is and what they bring to the table.  I always save the grocery store sale ads when they come in the mail, and I peruse them before I go to the store, adding items to my list as necessary.  Safeway has started to make this easier for me–they track my purchases by my Safeway card and I can look online and see which of the items I usually purchase are on sale.

3.  Get Your Troops in Formation.
When getting ready to deploy to enemy territory it is important to get your troops in order.  I used to just take the list from the fridge and head straight to the store, but found myself wandering around the store, reading the list 20 times over, and missing things and having to go back to aisles I had already visited to get something that was at the end of the list.  Instead, I now type up my list and break it down by grocery store aisle order (starting at the bread side and ending in frozen food/produce–otherwise your ice cream gets soggy by the time you’re done shopping!).

4.  Be On the Lookout for Denial and Deception.
Beware of your enemy’s attempts to fool you.  After grocery shopping just about every week for the past seven or so years, I KNOW how much things cost.  I know the difference between a sale and a marketing campaign.  I know not to buy my english muffins when they’re two for $6 because every other week they go on sale for buy one get one free (two for $4).  I don’t pick up things from the ends of the aisles.  That same item will be in its regular location where you can compare it with the prices of other brands.  Often time the Safeway brand is still cheaper than the name brand on sale.

5.  Go Hard or Go Home.
I try very hard not to buy anything that’s not on sale if I can help it.  When I was growing up my dad used to have stock shelves in the basement and a chest freezer, and when things were  a good price he would buy them in bulk!  I can’t do much of that now, but if there is a really good sale I do buy a couple items at a time, especially if it is something I can freeze or doesn’t go bad!

6.  Celebrate Your Victories.
I am weirdly competitive about my savings percentages.  Eric and I will always ask each other how much we saved when we get back from the store.  Also, there are rules.  You can’t cheat by buying 10 things from the clearance rack that we don’t need just to bump up your savings percentage.  This is another reason why I hate buying things that aren’t on sale–it throws off my game!  I am pretty much always higher than 25 percent, but a typical day is above 30 percent and a good one is above 35!  This Sunday was 31, which was not as good as last week’s 33 percent.  I know…I told you I have problems!  But hey, why pay full price for something that was 30 percent off the week before?

7.  Have a Closeout Strategy.
Just like we got in trouble for not having a continuation strategy after we got out of Afghanistan, you can’t just take your groceries and run after you’ve checked out!  I always pull to the side and scan the list while I’m still right next to the customer service counter, because almost every time Safeway has charged me incorrectly for one or two items.  I used to find these after I’d gone home, and it never seemed worth it to go back to the store for a couple of dollars, but if I’m standing right there and there is no one in line at customer service, it’s worth it.  I should start totaling how much I’ve saved just by doing that…if at the very least just to make me feel better about my craziness.

8.  Enjoy Your Spoils.
After you’ve made sure you’ve been charged fairly for your goods, then it is time to go home and start cooking awesome new recipes!

Well, I told you I have some serious problems!!  What can I tell you, I enjoy going to the grocery store, buying good food, but also saving money!! I think I know where some of these crazy tendencies come from, but I’ll save that for another post.

I would ask if anyone else is as OCD as I am about grocery shopping, but I think I already know the answer!;)

Dinner Monday night was turkey and apple meatloaf, “baked” sweet potato, and fresh steamed green beans (and yes, I put ketchup on my meatloaf, what of it?:).

And lunch Tuesday was a chicken deli sandwich, cottage cheese and strawberries, and a caramel rice cake with dark chocolate PB for “dessert”.  Mmm…

I have some new recipes to try, but I haven’t had time the past two days to do any cooking, grr!  I will change that tomorrow, hopefully!:)


About Erin @ untilyoutri

Runner, triathlete, food lover, and happy blogger!
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6 Responses to I Am a Nerd

  1. Trisha says:

    I love your grocery store “battle” strategies! Very clever, and very true 🙂

  2. Patty says:

    Ok, Erin…I always said you were my favourite daughter-in-law…but now I KNOW you are for sure!!! I love the way you do your grocery shopping. I have been doing the grocery shopping the way you described since before you were born. I do love the way you guys compete to see who got the better deals…I don’t have that game but I always feel like I am in a game show when they total up my groceries & I see how much I have saved. I use coupons too & try to buy things on sale with a coupon. Once, I saved $130. I was jumping up & down. Even the people around me were getting into it. One other strategy I use (pretty OCD or very “Sleeping With the Enemy”) I will group all the like item staples in my pantry & face them. I do the same thing in my frig & freezer, linen closets & cabinets. Makes it really easy to glance in there to see if there’s anything on the list I forgot plus, that way I sleep better at night….knowing everything is in the right place. So glad we’re related….

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