Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Dining Out

I am a very social girl and *love* my lunch dates, happy hour dates & dinner dates with friends!  For many of us this hinders (or completely sidelines) our health and fitness goals.  I would never tell my clients to become social recluses and abandon their friends on a quest to health and wellness.  The key is choosing the right restaurants, eating the right portion and (when possible) going in with a plan!  I love that many cities now have an abundance of natural/health oriented restaurants, these are obviously the best choice when eating out with friends but you can't always dictate the restaurant choice.  My plan of attack is to google the restaurant menu, even from my iPhone if I have to, and choosing my meal ahead of time.  By planning my meal (and special requests) ahead of time, I don't make a hasty and unhealthy decision while ordering.  I typically order salads because I love to load up on nutrient rich veggies, requesting no cheese or croutons which are calorie/fat laden and dressing on the side (balsamic is my favorite, but I don't shun dressings - just watch portion size and only use 2 Tbsp).  A couple hidden dangers in salads are glazed nuts & tortilla strips.  Glazed nuts can sabotage your healthy salad into having the sugar content of a candy bar and tortilla strips can add unnecessary calories and saturated fat.

Today I went to La Bocca Pizzeria with a girlfriend and had a wonderful lunch!  I chose a small chicken caesar salad with no parmesan cheese and no croutons.  The salad was of appropriate size, approximately 4-5 ounces of grilled chicken, 1 sliced tomato, and 3 cups romaine lettuce.  My estimate is that the entire salad had 400-425 calories maximum, but it was very satisfying!

Dinner out with my girlfriends (I'm on far left)

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