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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.

High Intensity Bodyweight Training: Ballistic Pushups & Dips!

This was a tough one!

Starts out with ballistic push ups (like clap pushups but without the clap as my wrist is still not 100%) nonstop for 20 reps, then all out on dips for 10 reps.

To say it was painful would be an understatement, but you just have to push through and keep on going.

Still training, hope you are too and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#hometraining #homeworkout #homeworkout #highintensitytraining #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #fitover40 #naturalbodybuildingvideos #chestday #chesttraining #naturalbodybuildingtips #pushups #dips #bodyweighttraining #highintensitytrainingtips #drugfreebodybuilding #calesthenics

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Kevin's Unconventional Biceps Training- 3-6 Minutes a Week!

In this video I go over my biceps training using the Naturally Intense High Intensity Training protocols that helped me go from having arms measuring 11.5 to 12 inches to 18 inches drug free!

It's an unconventional approach for certain, but it's one that's helped my arms grow and the hundreds of men and women I have trained over the past 30 plus years.

Now, my success isn't due to being genetically gifted, as it took me the better part of 11 years to get my arms up to those measurements.

Which is significant as it works and been been proven time and time again to work for the average man or woman trying to grow their arms without drugs.

It's my hope that these high intensity training protocols can help you as much as they helped me!

Click on my bio link to see the full video on my YouTube channel and thanks as always for taking the time to look at my work!!! Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#highintensitytraining #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #fitover40 #naturalbodybuildingvideos #armworkout #bicepsworkout #naturalbodybuildingtips #biceps #armtraining #highintensitytrainingtips #drugfreebodybuilding #barbellcurls

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At the Lancaster Classic Day 2 Elimination Rounds Against European Champion, and World Record Holder Leo Pettersen @leo_barebow_archer

I don't talk much about it but I'm also a competitive barebow archer (surprise!) and last Saturday I had the honor of making it to Day 2 at the Lancaster Archery Classic in the Barebow Division, as I made the top 64 out of 267 competitors and had a chance to shoot with some of the greatest barebow shooters on the planet!

I didn't make it past Leo, but it was a real rush to be there and a huge thanks to my coach, Joe MyGlyn @prolinearchery for helping me get there.

Thanks as well to my good friend @sean_chan33 for all of his help from the very start, to my line buddy Aaron Shea for taking the shot and showing up to support!

My thanks as well to rob_kaufhold for putting on and promoting one of the best archery tournaments on earth!

Thanks also to to everyone who took the time to send a supporting word and I am looking forward to next year!!! #naturallyintense #barebow

#lancasterclassic #lancasterarcheryclassic2024 #lancasterarchery #archery #fitover40 #barebowrecurve #targetarchery

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Dumbo, Brooklyn circa 2004

This shot was taken as part of the promotion for my Naturally Intense DVD and was about a year after my last bodybuilding competition.

It was a grueling photoshoot.

We started at about 10 am and finished around 4pm and I was completely spent, but the more we shot the sharper I looked, so we kept on going.

It's nice to look back from time to time and as tired as I was, we all had a blast!

My thanks to @stephanie_corne_artwork, @https://pulse.ly/itgnag2dec and @ftaz1 for taking the shots!!!

Thanks for watching and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #throwback #fifthavenuegym #5thavenuegym #drugfreebodybuilding #naturalbodybuildinglifestyle #gymlife #gymmotivation #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #bodybuilding #blackandwhite #instablackandwhite #bnw

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Can You Build An Impressive Physique Training Only At Home?


I stopped training in commercial gyms as of March 2020 and have been training at home ever since.

Initially I was admittedly worried that I might lose some of my gains or not make as much progress, but that certainly wasn't the case.

I've consistently continued to improve with my high intensity workouts and muscles have no idea where they are training.

As long as the criteria of adequate intensity and overload are met, there will be an adaptive response and your muscles will get bigger and stronger.

So don't worry at all about where you train, focus instead of what will be the best way for you to always be training!

Thanks for watching and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

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Kevin's Three Day Training Spilt!

For the past 33 years I have trained three times a week with Naturally Intense High Intensity Training workouts lasting 10, 15 to 20 minutes max.

It's a training split tried and testes not only in it's helping me realize my goal of becoming a successful natural bodybuilder, but it's also helped hundreds of men and women over the past three decades.

I have tested just about every possible training split imaginable and for this particular style of high intensity training, this particular grouping consistently yields fantastic results.

I hope it helps you as much as it's helped me over the years and thanks so much for taking the time to look at my work.

Keep training hard and Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#trainingsplit #3daytrainingsplit #threedaytrainingsplit #naturalbodybuilding #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuildingvideo #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #naturalbodybuildingtips #drugfreebodybuilding #bodybuilding #highintensitytraining #highintensitytrainingtips

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405 Stiff Leg Deadlift for 7 Reps! High Intensity Training.

First leg workout of the year and already pushing it!

I haven't done a stiff leg deadlift over 315lbs for about 3 years at this point, and I did my last set with 315lbs and comfortably got to 10 reps and decided I had far too much gas left in the tank and that I should go up in weight.

So I did.

I figured I might get a solid 6 reps in, but I made it to 7 and I think I could have gone on to get a full 10 reps BUT that's when good judgement prevailed.

As a bodybuilder having not trained this heavy for so many years, the shock of this much weight would be more than enough to stimulate muscle growth, and doing more reps wouldn't yield any greater returns, only increase the likelihood of injury.

It's not about the numbers, it's about training to a point where you achieve your goal, and it's important to have a goal in mind as a bodybuilder based on increasing muscle mass rather than hitting a particular number.

Besides, if in my 20's I never did more than 405lbs on a stiff leg deadlift, it doesn't make any sense going heavier than when I am almost 50!

Could I deadlift more at this point?

Absolutely but just because you can doesn't mean you should!

So keep those weights in a good working range, keep it safe and as always Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#hometraining #homeworkout #homeworkout #roguerack #highintensitytraining #naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #fitover40 #naturalbodybuildingvideos #backworkout #naturalbodybuildingtips #backtraining #highintensitytrainingtips #drugfreebodybuilding #fitoverforty #deadlift

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Turning 50 in a few months...

Not much of a big deal for me as I still feel pretty much the same but I hope that my example helps show what can be done with a lifetime commitment to eating well and training consistently!

Thanks for coming along on the journey and as always, Excelsior!!! #naturallyintense

#naturalbodybuilder #naturalbodybuilding #healthylifestyle #fitover40 #drugfreebodybuilding #naturalbodybuildingmotivation #natty #fitness

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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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