Friday, November 14, 2008

Fitness Friday: The Eating Out Edition

I don't want to know what life would be like if there were no restaurants. I love eating out. Not every day, mind you. Sitting down at least once a week where someone brings me refills is just wonderful. Of course, it might be easier on our budget if we lived out in the sticks and eating out just wasn't possible. I've heard that some people live this way...some by choice!

Probably, it would be better on my waistline too. But even if you took away the restaurants, there would still be the church get-togethers, parties, holiday events, etc. We MUST learn to stick to our goals even outside the walls of our kitchens.

I had a success at a restaurant called Kelley's a month or so ago when FF first began. The girls eat pancakes really well so we stopped there. It's like a Denny's in that it serves breakfast all day, but the biscuits in this place are the size of my kids' faces. I'm not exaggerating. Let's not even talk about the health effects of good southern cooking, OK?

So, I flipped to the back of the menu and found "carb friendly" selections. I chose an omelet filled with onions, ham, etc. and served with sides of sliced cucumbers and tomatoes. I FILLED UP on those sides and ate about half the omelet. BOY it was good! A lot of restaurants offer healthier choices.

But there is still the portion size to worry about. That omelet was seriously the size of my forearm. In thinking about this post, I decided what I need to do. I've talked before about how out of proportion our serving sizes have become. Isn't it true that a good serving size is often the size of your fist? What we need to do is ask for an extra plate when we order. Then immediately take off of our plate any more food than the size of our fist. Our plate will probably be looking empty now, but that's only because the plate sizes are ridiculous. Then, you will be able to take your time eating, knowing that you can indeed clean your plate without over-eating. I was also thinking it would be a good thing to serve myself chips onto a plate before I start eating. Plunging your hand into the chips and salsa while chatting is a very bad way to start a meal if you care about your clothes size! Don't ask me how I know.

At church a few weeks ago there were snacks being served after a special singing service. I got in the room first (right behind all the kids) and started opening containers and setting things out to serve. Then I got busy helping little kids get some food without touching everything. When we left, I realized I hadn't eaten anything myself! I couldn't believe it! I had not planned on that happening but it seemed to have worked. So, I tested my theory at Bible study Wednesday night. I headed to the kitchen and started helping prepare things and serve cookies to the kids. Well, I did stay away from most of the snacks, but I did try the desert the hostess was serving. It was so unusual and I'm really glad I did (got the recipe too!). It might work better for others to just stay away from the food completely, but I know a lot of hostesses who don't eat much because they are busy so I thought it was worth a try.

I'm planning to employ both of these tactics during the upcoming holidays. 1. Serve myself small portions of things I want to try. 2. Stay really busy helping with food and such so I don't have as much time to stuff my face. How does that sound? And on a side note, I totally think there is a time and place to indulge. If we can just get a handle on the every day stuff, we would still be doing good.

The last thing I could do to improve our eating away from home is to keep non-perishable snacks in the car. I cannot tell you how many times we end up running through a drive-through because the timing of our errands didn't work out. Sweetheart gets headaches if she doesn't eat regularly so if we had snacks and drinks in the car it would really help.

OK--your turn. If you have written a Fitness Friday post on your blog today, please sign up on the Mr. Linky below to share that link with the rest of us. If you don't have a post to share, feel free to say your piece in the comments section. We welcome all great ideas for helping us eat healthy away from home!

Have a great weekend everyone!


  1. Well, I thought this WAS the holiday edition, so that's what my post is about. How I got so off-track is anyone's guess.

    But I think I'm helpful. Possibly.

    Anyway, good ideas! Portioning out food before you start eating is a great idea. And keeping snacks (low salt if you can) in the car also is great!

  2. I'll be back later today to read everyone's post - and yours too, Brenda - but managed to get my post up. Running with my schedule (forgot to put gas in the van last night for today's carpool!)

  3. You aren't off track Julie! We are including holidays and everything in eating out.

  4. I loved your post, Brenda! I am totally watching my portion size AND helping out in the kitchen. If I am busy, I won't eat. Right?

  5. Oh yes, we keep snacks in the car and when the kids are begging me after school or whenever, "Can we please stop at _________? I'm starving! (insert cry, cry, whine, whine)" I say, "Here. You can have either a granola bar, some nuts, dried apples or jerky if you're really that hungry and can't wait until we get home." Sometimes they accept, but mostly they just wait the 15-20 minutes until we get home!!

  6. So on the way somewhere this afternoon I ran through the Sonic Drive thru. I KNOW! Right after Fitness Friday about eating out. Terrible. I'm just confessing here.

    And in line I was thinking, "Man! I wish I didn't actually know one of the FF ladies in real life." And I pull up to my destination and there in front of me is a FF lady (who shall remain nameless) HOLDING A SONIC SACK. Turns out I was in line behind her in the drive-thru.

    DOUBLE BUSTED. Both of us.

  7. Oh, you are so busted!! Both of you! BUT, what I lve is your honesty and grace with yourself :) Totally laughing!

    I loved your idea to keep busy helping rathier than munching, I am SO going to try that when I am at all the random holiday parties this year. great tip!!

  8. Um, would that other lady be Karly by any chance??? ;0)

    And thanks for clarifying I'm not totally out of the loop. I was wondering there for a minute. Whew!

  9. Nope. Karly lives several states over. She's cleared.

  10. Yeah, no one who is doing FF knows me irl. Whew! :)

    And, Brenda, you got caught! That is so funny! I love your willingness to admit it! :)

  11. I am one of those individuals that loves to do the holiday cooking but for some very strange reason my appetite disappears when it comes time to eat...if only that would stick around for the rest of days!


  12. the "staying busy" one i loved! and how much it helps all those mamas that want and need to be eating, but don't have the time, since they're tending to all their little ones. i've been the mama wanting to eat, but can't because of little people needing help with everything, and now i'm the one that needs to be serving others' little ones so i quit packin' on the pounds!

    such a good idea!

  13. You are right on, Brenda--good job ordering from the healthier menu choices! Well, at least until you got to the Sonic Drive they have anything fruit/veggie there? Oh, well...been there, done that myself.

    I loved your comment regarding portioning out snacks. Such a good idea! Before I started WW, I was enamored with peanut-butter filled pretzels. I used to grab the big ole tub, put some jelly in a bowl, get a big glass of milk, then eat "pbj's" in front of the TV. (Shuddering at the memory...) So after I started WW, I knew I wouldn't be doing that anymore, but still wanted to be able to have the pb pretzels. So I portioned out servings into little snack baggies & stuffed them back into the tub. It worked--I was able to enjoy them in moderation until I got over my food crush. I've done the same thing with baked chips--keeps me from binging AND it's cheaper than buying the pre-portioned bags.

    Again, THANKS SO MUCH for starting this. I love it & it is such a blessing to me!

  14. I still remember what it was like living in town. The kids were always starving after dance class (even the ones who weren't dancing) (:
    We do have snacks in the car... I hate what it does to the car, but actually we eat a lot of meals in the car, Sandwiches, drinks, chips or crackers, apples, you know the whole thing. Since it takes about an hour to drive to town, we do it all while we are there- it's an all day thing. I just try to choose healthy. Besides, lunch meat is cheaper for our group than the fast food is. I cringe to pay that bill, considering what it is. Not that lunch meat is actually all that healthy (especially the salami that my oldes one likes) But at least it's about 15 to 20 dollars for a meal that actually fills up my clan as opposed to 25 to 35 dollars and still hearing "I'm hungry" (: My second youngest son informed my on Friday that his favorite place is the playgrounds that are at the fast food places... thanks to Grandpa (:
    Ha ha ha... crowd control is a great thing!

  15. Great ideas. Brenda your honesty is so encouraging to me.I keep thinking everything is just going to click & I'll just get it. Then when I don't I just want to throw away the rest of the week. Hope your back on track after your sonic trip. I'm going to go get on the gazelle in hopes to get myself back on track.


I don't get to talk to a lot of actual grown-ups during the day, so your comments make me really happy! :)