There’s nothing better than heading out to your favourite restaurant on the weekend and indulging in some delicious grub. When most start their fitness journey however, they feel the age-old dilemma of wanting to go out but also terrified of ruining the healthy eating that you have been sticking to all week.
We've been there and we got you. Here are some simple steps to ensure that you can have an enjoyable, delicious experience without worrying the morning after...
Check Out The Restaurant Beforehand
Avoid the last minute panic of there being nothing on the menu save from burgers, chips, and beer. Get up Google Maps and give the place a little investigation. This way you can have a good, long look at the menu without the waiter leaning over your shoulder. You'll be able to take your time in choosing your meal and see there is something that will work for you and fit into your plan.
If you don’t see something that fits in your plan right away, don’t automatically rule the place out. Instead, follow these simple steps:
- Look for dishes made from whole grains. You'll feel full because of the fibre while lowering cholesterol levels.
- See if you can double up on starters. You don't have to get a main if that doesn't work for you.
- Consider whether you could share your main meal. That way you can have one healthy item, and a more indulgent meal open to the table.
- If there are a lot of high calorie sauces, ask whether you could have them on the side.
Say No To Fancy Drinks
We know you don't want to hear it but often fizz or alcoholic drinks have a lot calories. You'll have to make the decision as to where to save your calories but we suggest keep them for the meal. Stick with drinking water, or a light alcoholic option, or anything with lower calories.
Ensure to exercise
Plan ahead if you can. An extra workout wont do you any harm whether you overeat on your set calories or not but it may help with that sense of guilt that sometimes sets in. You should feel able to enjoy your meal with confidence, one meal out will not ruin your fitness journey.
The most obvious but the most difficult. As sad as it is to say, sweet treats are rarely the most nutritional aspect of dining out. If you want to cut down on calories, we'd recommend this be the one getting the chop.
If you really can’t resist a dessert then the best possible advice we can give is to, keep your portion small, whether you share a dessert or ask for a small portion, (but that is entirely up to you).
Managing portion sizes is important for all meals but at a restaurant, you don't have the same control as you would at home in terms of setting what's on your plate.
as portion sizes in restaurants are usually much bigger than you would make at home, so keep portions small where possible or take some home with you.
Our best advice? Avoid associating food with guilt or shame. Your body needs that fuel to feel energised for the day. Keep these little tips in mind but equally try to avoid the panic that might set in when eating out. One meal will not ruin everything you've worked for. Weighing yourself when you get home or not eating the next day to 'make up' for the outing is not healthy, mentally or physically. Like most things in our fitness journey, we encourage your main focus to be a conscious strive toward quality over quantity.
Go enjoy your food!