Follow Coach E by Email

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Surviving "Eating Out" in the Summertime

I can tell you what I have heard at least 3 times already this morning from clients. "I went away last week with my family and ate horribly...I mean, we went out to dinner and had 'x' and then we went to brunch and I ate 'y', oh, and drank so much 'z'...". You can fill in the letters with every bad food or beverage you can imagine. And, basically, from this type of comment, my deduction is that you have completely let yourself go and have taken all the responsibility off of yourself (because you are on vacation) to eat healthy. Or, healthier like you would have if you had been at home and in your routine. No excuse for not still eating right. Let me tell you why.

Say you go out of town and you have to, EAT OUT. Remember these rules when you order and take some initiative to make some smart choices.

Breakfast: At almost any restaurant, you have the choice of ordering some oatmeal. I know that this is not a favorite food choice of some, but it is one of the healthiest, heartiest meals to start your day and boost your metabolism. Skip the brown sugar, and add some Splenda, some half and half, and your oatmeal is complete. Say you don't like oatmeal, you can get the 2 eggs (don't go for egg whites..the yolk is really not that bad for you unless you are seriously watching your cholesterol), and skip the potatoes (get cottage cheese or tomatoes instead) and if you are truly craving toast, get the wheat toast, dry. Dry=not buttered. You can put a thin spread of jelly on the toast, but honestly, you don't need it. I would rather you order another egg than have the toast anyway. More protein :) Skip the cheese, skip the pancakes. And, if by chance you want the omelet, get it packed with veggies, no cheese, and get the side of cottage cheese instead.

Lunch: Subway is my ultimate favorite choice- and you can always get the 6 grams of fat or less sub, in a wrap. A tortilla has fewer carbs than the bread choices there, plus it is like eating a burrito. But, less sodium, and definitely less fat. At restaurants, a sandwich is always a healthy choice, but watch mayo, dressings, butter, or cheese- order it without. Soups are a good option at lunch as well- stock up on the veggie soups and it if is creamy, stay away. The tomato based soups are the lowest fat options for you. Salads are good for lunch, but make sure you get enough protein on them. Keep the protein lean (chicken, tri-tip, or fish) and watch the dressings.

Dinner: You can best guess that if you go out to eat for dinner, that you will be consuming at least 1500 to 2000 calories- in one meal. That is the truth. Even the healthiest thing on the menu is still around 1000 calories at most standard, chain Americana restaurants (i.e. Chilis, Macaroni Grill, Red Robin, BJs Brewery). The tips I provide for Lunch remain the same for your dinner options. However, at dinner you might have better luck getting a full entree of lean meat (fillet of steak or fish, or chicken breast) with a healthy-sized side of veggies (that are steamed- not doused in butter or creamy sauce). Be food-smart and know that if you are going out to eat, you can ask the server to prepare the food in a way that is lower in fat. I always do, and my food comes out just as I want it- plus, I don't feel guilty after I eat it. Stay away from the starchy sides, like the potatoes, pasta, rice- and the bread that they serve you for non-nutritious filler prior to the meal. My biggest piece of advice- watch the alcohol content. I am serious about that. If you cut out the 2 glasses of wine that you have (even if it just 3 times a week), that is about 900 calories you can save yourself a week- and that equals a pound a month if you cut it out completely. Try it- who says you can't have fun without drinking? I bet you can have more fun if you lost some weight :)

Have a great day and take some responsibility for your food intake- don't make bad choices because you "had" to. You have the choice to be healthy- make the right decision today.

No comments:

Clancy, Mike and I

Clancy, Mike and I
SB Tri Finishers- Nice Tiles!