HomefitnessEating Out And Staying Healthy- The Restaurant Guide

Eating Out And Staying Healthy- The Restaurant Guide

eatign out and staying healthy restaurant guide

Eating Out And Staying Healthy- The Restaurant Guide


It used to be really simple. If you don’t want to gain weight and always eat healthy just cook all of your meals at home and don’t eat out at restaurants. It’s how I grew up back in the islands and it works- but as effective as it may be in terms of having complete control over what goes into your body, eating only home cooked meals simply isn’t always possible for everyone in today’s fast paced world. More and more people have little choice but to eat out on a regular basis as home cooked meals aren’t always practical if you are always on the run. Ask your grandparents and they’ll tell you that jobs today aren’t anything like what they were several decades ago. Our information intensive environments coupled with an ultra-competitive job market have made 40 hour weeks all but obsolete and it isn’t uncommon for many to have to endure 50-70 hour work weeks to get by. Such arduous hours make it impractical if not impossible for many to find the time or the energy to cook everything they need for the coming week. For others, eating out is an integral part of their job description if not a regular event that is part of their office culture, needless to say, while eating only home cooked meals may be the easiest way to stay in shape- it is very much possible to eat out and lose weight. It takes some doing but it isn’t impossible.

I, for one, eat out on a pretty regular basis, so much so that I’ve been a Zagat reviewer for over twenty years in New York City and not in any way does it force me to make compromises in terms of consistently eating well. That being said, you do have to be knowledgeable of what you can and cannot eat on the restaurant menu and you can’t expect to find something wholesome at a fast food chain. Too often, health fanatics isolate themselves from their friends and family by not going out to eat and in so doing they miss the opportunity to partake in one of the most ancient of human social activities- which is in sharing a meal. It doesn’t have to be that way and it shouldn’t be. Being healthy isn’t about living a Spartan and hermetic existence- it’s about balance, and when done judiciously, eating out can easily find a place in a healthy lifestyle. In part one of the Eating Out Guide, I will do my best to outline some of the basics to keep in mind when eating out in general and in part two I will cover in detail the food selections available to you and what you should avoid in over a dozen different popular cuisines. Thanks for reading and I hope this guide not only encourages you to eat out at good restaurants but also helps you keep your waistline trim at the same time.


The Psychology of Eating Out And Eating Healthy

The Rules

1. Don’t be negative- If you think that there’s nothing healthy to eat- you won’t find anything healthy to eat.

2. Your parents aren’t watching- Just because it’s on your plate doesn’t mean that you have to eat it.

3. You are the boss so don’t be afraid to ask for what you want the way you want it.


Eating Out And Eating Healthy Rule 1. There Is Always Something You Can Eat At A Good Restaurant

eating out and staying healthy restaurant rules
At quality restaurants there is always something on the menu that you can eat!

One of the biggest mistakes when you are eating out is to think that you don’t have any healthy choices. Such a predisposition only makes it more likely that you will indeed eat eat junk food and is one of the reasons people blow their diet when eating out or ordering in. In Ninjutsu, the martial tradition that I have taught and studied for the past few decades, there is a sub-discipline called tonpo- the art of escape. You may wonder what the art of escape has to do with eating out, but the fundamental precept of tonpo is that if you believe there is no way out then it is unlikely that you will ever find one. However if you see things for what they are without a prejudiced point of view and remain alert, you will find that there is almost always a way out. With regards to eating out, if you go to a restaurant and resign yourself to eating poorly then that’s exactly what you’ll do. You’ll only see the poor choices on the menu and won’t have the perspective of trying to make the best of the choices before you. If you are always positive that there must must be something healthy on the menu then you’ll most likely find it and make wiser choices. Keep in mind that these precepts won’t always work in a dive or fast food restaurant and it’s another reason why you should always eat or order in from quality establishments. It costs a bit more but you are more
than worth it.


Eating Out And Eating Healthy Rule 2. You Don’t Have To Eat Everything On Your Plate

eating out and staying healthy restaurant rules- you do not have to eat everything
Just because it’s on your plate at a restaurant doesn’t mean you have to eat it!


When we were children most of us were taught to always finish what was on your plate. Growing up it was often painful to be confronted with something I didn’t like as I knew that if it was on my plate I had to eat it. While this is great principle to teach kids the value of food and not to be wasteful, it can cause more problems than it solves when we are adults as it can encourage us to overeat. Especially given the over-sized portions served at many restaurants here in the United States. Compounding the ingrained traits of always eating what’s on your plate is the conviction that you’re not getting the most for your money if you don’t eat your money’s worth of food. It might be good economics- but good economics is actually one of the reasons our nation faces obesity problems in the first place (read my article on the Economics of Obesity here). These ways of thinking do little to promote healthy eating habits and hinders you from making sensible judgments about what goes into your body and encourages a very negative way of looking at food. Such points of view create great consumers but fall far short of creating healthy individuals.

It can be hard to not eat everything and not feel wasteful, but a different point of view can make all the difference. If I’m at a restaurant and an order of mashed potatoes automatically comes with my main course, I look at it from the point of view that I only paid for the main course and not the included mashed potatoes. From my perspective the extras are thrown in for free and I am always very firm about asking that any extras that I will not eat stay in the kitchen and not on my plate. By focusing only on what I ordered and not having the included side dishes on my plate makes much easier to not give in and something out a misplaced sense of obligation. Sometimes the side dish is already on your plate, in which case you just have to keep your goals in perspective. You can get some practical tips on avoiding the temptation of food right in front of you in my article on avoiding temptation here.


Eating Out And Eating Healthy Rule 3. Remember That At A Restaurant You Are The Boss!
eating healthy at restaurant is easy as you are the boss
Remember at a restaurant you are the boss and can order things the way you want it prepared.

When was the last time you were at work and your boss asked you to do a project a particular way but you chose to do it your way instead and he or she was perfectly fine with it? Doesn’t happen too often in the real world, does it? And the same applies to the restaurant staff when you are eating out. When you order at restaurant of any kind- you are the boss. Not the waiter and not the chef, just you. That being said you shouldn’t be afraid of hurting anyone’s feelings since it’s their job to see to it that you get what you want. That’s the contract between a customer and any reputable restaurant, when you want something cooked a certain way you should be able to get it prepared just the way you want it. This is another reasons I advocate restaurants over fast food chains. In a real restaurant your preferences are far more likely to be accommodated. You can’t ask for your hamburger without salt or additives at McDonald’s nor should you expect such levels of service at a fast food joint. It’s very much take it or leave it and my advice would be to always leave it and eat somewhere else. You aren’t the boss and so it is always worth the extra money it costs to eat at a better place.

Not Bad For Training Only Three Days A Week!

Because it's three days a week with soul crunching intensity non stop for the past 33 years.

There's no gimmick to it and it means being uncompromisingly all in for your workouts and with your nutrition.

I don't think there's that much that special about me.

There's nothing enhanced, nothing boosted by testosterone and there weren't any special "supplements" along the way.

Just three days of blistering hard work each week and meticulous attention to what I eat.

Being 90% on point each week means you are 100% off after 10 weeks and I can't emphasize enough how much of a difference unshakeable consistency makes to your overall results.

Most of the natural athletes didn't get where they are by any genetic advantage, they just did what is so very rare- which is stick to their process 100%.

It's not easy as it's not always easy and certainly not always popular, but you owe it to yourself to see just how far you can go if you go all in!

Looking forward to seeing your results and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#naturalbodybuilding #naturalbodybuilder #fitover40 #homegym #drugfreebodybuilding #gymselfie #hometraining #naturalbodybuildingmotivation

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What I Eat To Stay Lean and Keep Building Muscle All Year Round.

If there every was a "secret" to how I consistently stay in shape (and almost 20 years since my last competition) the answer would be my diet.

Diet is the deciding factor in what your body looks like and your overall performance and I want to stress that while this is a layout of the foods I eat on a daily basis, it's not a blueprint for your YOU should be eating.

What it can be is an example of what it takes to maintain a certain degree of size and muscularity at all times as a natural athlete, and also the underlying principle to how I select my foods.

Which is that I don't eat junk foods or highly processed foods and I only drink water.

(No protein shakes, ever!)

If you can start with that, there's no doubt that you will be on the right track in terms of your nutrition.

So stay away from processed foods, know that I believe in you and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #naturalbodybuildingtips #naturalbodybuildingdiet #diet #whatieatinaday #mydiet #naturalbodybuildingvideos #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #drugfreebodybuilding #healthyeating #noproteinshakes #excelsior #bodybuilding #bodybuildingdiet

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Post workout physique check in.

The contest gets closer and closer as the sun meanders across the sky, as my contest is and always will be, did I do everything I possibly could that day to improve?

Did I train hard enough?

Did I push it enough?

The dietary part isn't an issue.

It hasn't been for many years as I always make sure that my nutrition is on point, and there's no leeway on that front.

I don't feel good when I'm not eating optimally, and I respect myself enough to not settle into a place where not feeling my best is the norm.

And to be honest, it feels really good to put my head down at the end of the day knowing that I gave it my all.

Not that I was the best or was even necessarily successful at everything that I set out to accomplish, but knowing that I gave everything nonetheless.

It's a feeling I want everyone to have.

To sleep soundly knowing that you gave it your all.

That you didn't miss an opportunity to improve on what you are passionate about, because in so doing, you experience an eagerness to do the same the next day.

It's the ultimate contest and I invite everyone to submit their application forms, as it's one of the few competitions where everyone who does the work and shows up, is in the winner's circle.

Keep striving, keep pushing and as always, Excelsior! #naturallyintense

(Thanks @indi.anna.r or taking the shot, as I know your arm was probably shaking after that workout!)

#naturalbodybuilding #naturalbodybuilder #fitover40 #homegym #drugfreebodybuilding #gymselfie #hometraining #naturalbodybuildingmotivation

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Motivation vs Discipline. What You Really Need To Be Successful!

I am often asked what was my motivation to keep going starting off as a skinny 125lb kid who no one believed could ever be a successful bodybuilder.

The answer is that motivation didn't have that much to do with it.

Motivation may have played a part in getting me started, but it was discipline that got me to where I wanted to be.

Motivation is fleeting and ephemeral, it's not always going to be there and on the days when you don't feel like eating right or training hard, you need a disciplined practice to see you through.

A disciplined practiced based on doing what you need to do to be successful regardless of the circumstances.

That's how I made it through all those tough times when I felt I wasn't getting anywhere, and it's what will help you as well.

So forget motivation, focus on building a disciplined practice, know that I believe in you and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#naturalbodybuilding #nosteroids #fitnessgoals #naturalbodybuildingtips #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuildingvideos #excelsior #fitover40 #naturalbodybuildingtips #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #disciplineovermotivation #disciplineequalsfreedom #discipline #motivation#fitness #mindset #selfdiscipline #fitnessmotivation #disciplinequotes #workout #disciplineiskey

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Kevin's Ultimate Secret Six Pack Abs Tip!

If you ever wondered how I maintain a six pack all year round and have kept that six pack for decades on end, here's the secret.

This is one tip that will honestly get you on the path to a six pack.

There's no magic to it.

But if you follow this simple piece of advice, you will be able to do a lot more than get yourself a six pack, as it's a proven formula for success.

Give it a try and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#sixpack #sixpackabs #6pack #6packabs #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #naturalbodybuildingtips #naturalbodybuildingvideo #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #sixpacktips #drugfreebodybuilding #abs

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Happy Archery Day, everyone!!!

Yeah, it's a thing and can't say how much it's my thing!

To be honest, I am a barebow shooter and almost never shoot my compound bow (the monster in my hands) but it's all really good fun!

If you haven't tried archery or are thinking about doing it again, go give it a shot (no pun intended!!!)

And as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#archery #archeryday #bowtech #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #fitover40 #blackandwhite #bowtech

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Do You Have Good Genetics for Natural Bodybuilding?

I don't believe it's the question that needs to be asked.

Far too many, myself included, who went on to be successful natural bodybuilders would never have been the men and women you would expect to have the genetics for bodybuilding.

But we put in the work, the years, the dedication and the consistency, and so what matters isn't the question of genetics, but rather do you have the passion, the drive and the discipline to train hard and focus on your diet nonstop for years on end to realize your potential?

That's the real question, and yes, there are men and women who have great genetics for natural bodybuilding, but there are even more who would be amazing onstage but don't know it because they didn't believe enough in themselves to put in the time to see how far they could go.

So I am here to say that I believe you have it in you to do amazing things, so if it's your goal, or even if you just want to improve the way you look, stick with it and don't quit!

Know that I believe in you and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#naturalbodybuilding #nosteroids #fitnessgoals #bodytransformation #nodrugs #naturalbodybuildingtips #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuildingvideos #excelsior #fitover40 #personaltrainer #naturalbodybuildingtips #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #beleiveinyourself

157 17

Nope it's not a contest cut- it's just another day on the Path.

There are two ways to get cut, the fast way that requires going to extremes and which is inevitably temporary.

Or the Path-based way. Whereby your lifestyle and sustainable healthy practices get you there and keeps you there.

It takes time. It takes patience but it's an extremely honest endeavor.

If you put in the work and stay consistent with your training and following a processed food free and healthy diet, excellence is just a matter of time.

It takes time but as long as you draw breath, you have the time and you can do this.

So take the Path-based way and as always, Excelsior!!!

And my thanks to my son @reid_443 for snapping the shot, and the approval rating! 😂

#naturalbodybuilding #naturalbodybuilder #fitover40 #homegym #drugfreebodybuilding #gymselfie #hometraining

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Related Articles:

How To Eat Out And Still Lose Weight- A Restaurant Guide


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Kevin Richardson
Kevin Richardsonhttps://www.naturallyintense.net
Featured everywhere from the Wall Street Journal to CBS News, celebrity Personal Trainer NYC and with over 2.6 million readers of his blog, Kevin Richardson is the creator of Naturally Intense High Intensity Training, one of the top lifetime drug free bodybuilders of his time, the first International Fitness & Nutrition Consultant for UNICEF, 2020 and 8 Time Winner of the Best of Manhattan Awards for Personal Training and a world recognized authority on high intensity training. Kevin has helped thousands, from celebrities to CEO's over the past 30 years achieve their fitness goals with his 10 minute high-intensity workouts done just three times a week in conjunction with his holistic nutrition approach. You can learn more about about his diet and training services at www.naturallyintense.net

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