First of all…
What the everliving fuck is happening with this weather?
It was in the high sixties one day and snowing two days later!!!
The good thing about the return of nice weather is getting out and about…
…the bad thing is that it tends to come along with a few extra calories…
Do you have trouble deciding what to eat when you are out?
What is a better or worse choice for you?
As I contemplated how to make better choices for myself while eating out, I figured I would share them with you.
Drink More Water
The ultimate #firstworldproblem is that most of us have never truly experienced hunger.
I might claim that the world is going to end because I haven’t eaten a sandwich in two hours, but that isn’t hunger.
Actual hunger is a physical sensation that doesn’t occur for 12-24 hours after consumption of food.
When the stomach contracts it creates a hunger “pang” which can last up to an hour and which will generally subside for a short time.
Even when presented with these types of hunger pangs (which I have encountered when intermittent fasting) a simple fix for me was to drink a glass of water.
It puts something in my stomach and also helps me to stay hydrated.
The other advantage to drinking a glass of water immediately upon arriving at a restaurant or bar is that if you are going to be drinking alcohol you will (hopefully) drink less.
The social aspect of drinking is no different if it is water or tequila, sweet sweet tequila. Plus, you are more likely to stay fully clothed in public if you are drinking water.
But What About Booze?
Before I begin this section let me start by saying that any alcohol at all is going to be detrimental to physique goals.
Alcohol has a lot of caloric content in a small serving.
It offers no satiety and may increase appetite.
It also has a detrimental effect on protein synthesis.
And we all know how decision making is affected.
So the best practice is to avoid alcohol altogether. But we know that probably isn’t going to happen so….
If you are going to drink, stay away from mixed drinks. I know that the world is obsessed with cocktail culture but aside from the prevalence of egg whites, cocktails are not great for one’s physique.
Part of the reason cocktails taste good is because of sugar, honey, agave or other sweeteners that add calories right off the bat.
Add that to the high caloric value of pure alcohol and you can easily have one drink in the 3-400 calorie range.
A better choice is a glass of wine or even a beer, or a mixed drink made with club soda.
Many people have suggested in the past vodka or tequila on the rocks but I think it becomes way too easy to over consume and lead to further poor choices.
Choose “Dry” Items
This is one of the best methods for me when eating at an unfamiliar restaurant.
By dry, I don’t mean flavorless, I just mean the method in which something is cooked. Sauces, dressings, and condiments can hide a lot of calories.
Whether they contain a lot of sugars or fats (or both) they are sure to greatly increase the caloric content of a meal.
Grilled lean meats, plain starches, and steamed veggies are my go to choices.
I can choose to add butter or some olive oil after the fact but I am in control of the portion.
If I order some chicken kabobs and a side of rice I can be sure that there is probably some fat used to cook the kabobs. If I want to add any extra fat to the meal I can better estimate where I am.
Or better, I save all those extra fat and carb calories and go get some ice cream!
I find that adding these habits into my routine helps me achieve a better balance in life.
I am still able to go out and enjoy a night with friends and family but I can also adhere a little bit better to my diet.
It’s not perfect but remember, I never asked for perfect.
Give it a try next time you are hitting the town and see if they help you. Most of all, keep balance in your life.
Fitness and nutrition are for the betterment of our lives. So keep living yours.
Don’t be a slave to it.