Damage Control: 4 Tips for Eating Out

We all do it. There’s no need to be ashamed. We all….eat out. Hehe.

Going out to eat is great. It’s social, it’s convenient, and it can be really tasty. However, the problem with eating out is that it’s easy to go overboard. Excess calories, lots of carbs, high fat and low protein are just some of the things that come along with it.

So how do you social eat effectively? How can you make it so that going out to eat doesn’t always have to mean having a cheat day that derails your progress? Here are tips for being an expert at social eating.

Eat Less Beforehand

Knowing that food you don’t make yourself is hard to calorie estimate, eat less early on in the day to save as many calories for the meal as possible. If your goal is fat loss then saving too many calories for eating out is always better than saving too little. If you’re not tracking calories, simply consciously eat less during the day leading up to your meal. Fasting is also a great option.

Eat Lots Of Protein During the Day


Eating enough protein during the day is hard enough for most people, and it doesn’t get easier when going out. Most food in restaurants are lower on the lean protein side and higher in carbs and fat because they’re cheap and tasty. Not only this, they usually charge you a premium for more lean proteins, and ain’t nobody got money fo’ dat. Knowing this, you’ll have to either front load or back load your protein depending on when your big meal is. If you’re going out for dinner, eat a high protein diet throughout the morning and afternoon. If you go out for breakfast or lunch, the rest of the day should be abundant in lean protein sources and low in carbs and fat.

Eat Like an Adult


This one is totally up to you. Whenever people go out to eat they seem to go all out and shovel every piece of food into their mouths like they’ll never eat again. Eating like an adult means having what you want but in reasonable quantities. Just because you’re out doesn’t mean the rules of physiology don’t apply to you and you won’t put on weight regardless of how much food you eat. Be mindful of your decisions, try what you’d like but remember it’s not a contest.

Expect to Weigh More Tomorrow


This is a huge point for staying motivated. Expect that you will be heavier on the scale tomorrow. You might also be a little puffier when you look in the mirror. THIS IS OK.

Food that’s made in restaurants is usually much higher in salt than the food that you make at home, whether you can taste it or not. All this extra sodium intake causes your body to retain water. Add that to the fact that carbs also cause you to retain water and you’ve got a recipe for a few pounds of temporary weight gain. Notice I said TEMPORARY. Provided that you return to your normal diet after your meal, you will lose this water weight over the next day or two, returning you to your original weight, or less if you’ve been good with your training and eating.

Those are 4 tips for for being a social eating pro. Happy eating!

– Sean

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