I have shared my tips on eating out before, however I had so many get in touch recently asking about it, I decided to share them again. Eating out is a big trend. We have so much variety and the prices are competitive, its definitely something we all encounter. I used to actually avoid going out for dinner for fear I would “undo” all my hard work in the gym. The crazy thing is – that one of my favourite treats is eating out – so I was avoiding something I really loved to do. Sure having dinner or lunch in a restaurant can be viewed as a treat and therefore you can of course decide to have a little of what you fancy and go all out but I want to show you that eating out does not have to be a thing that throws you off track. Here are my tips for eating out.
Research The Restaurant:
It might sound extremely nerdy but do you really care if it’s helping keep you on track to your goal? Most restaurants have an online presence. Look up their website. Read through their menu’s. Take time to consider what the “cleanest” options are. I always look up the menu so that I know I won’t be stuck when it comes to ordering.
Ask For What You Want
You don’t always have to take what’s on the menu. Most places are happy to make changes for you. Don’t be afraid to ask for adjustments that you want. For example if the dish is accompanied by chips or rice ask if you might have a side salad or portion of mixed veg instead. Again I rarely stick fully to what’s written on the menu. I usually ask for some adjustment.
Get The Sauce On The Side
Giving up on the sauces is a tough thing to do as they do add flavour to the meal. But by asking for the sauce on the side you can then dip your food in as necessary and will end up using a fraction of what could have been on your plate skipping a lot of unnecessary calories.
Look Out For Buzz Words
Boiled, steamed, baked and grilled are all words you should be looking out for on your menu. These are normally the healthier options (depending on accompaniments of course!) For the most part steer clear of anything that has been fried or battered.
Pass On The Bread Basket
It’s probably the hardest part for most but do try to avoid picking at the bread basket before your meal. One way to avoid this is to not let yourself go out for dinner starving. Many people let themselves go hungry all day in a bid to make up for eating out at night. This is the wrong approach. Eat as normal during the day. Allow yourself a small snack two hours before your scheduled dinner. That way when the bread basket comes out you won’t be as inclined to kill those hunger pangs with stodgy white rolls.
Do You Really Need All Three Courses?
I usually opt for two courses maximum when out for a meal. If there is something clean on the dessert menu that I fancy – like a fresh fruit salad – I’ll pass on the starter. However I usually like to go with a starter and a main course. By adding a third course you add a lot of extra calories as portion sizes in most places are quite large. I usually opt for a coffee or green tea at dessert time and some fresh fruit if they have it and it does the trick nicely.