Day 9: Nutritional Information at Restaurants

Day 2 on the road started off with a good 2 mile, 20 minute interval run on the treadmill. After that followed breakfast at the Westin. They have a pretty good buffet with lots of good fresh fruit. I had some scrambled eggs (kept to the palm size serving as recommended on Body For Life) and some fresh blueberries and raspberries.
Breakfast at the Westin
After breakfast I hit work for meetings all day long. Midway through the morning I had a Myoplex Lite Chocolate Fudge protein drink. I carted a few from home with me in my suitcase, put them in my fridge at the hotel, then took one with me to the office this morning and threw it in the fridge in their breakroom. It stayed cold util consumed mid-morning. Very tasty when cold – not so much when room temperature.
Do not consume when warm
Lunch was catered in with sandwiches, chips, cookies, and sodas. Fortunately they had bottled water too, so I opted for the bottled water. The sandwiches were in halves and didn’t have any dressing on them and were actually pretty healthy. I had half of a sandwich with turkey, ham, lettuce & tomato. A few hours later I ate the other half. I was able to successfully stay away from the chips, cookies, and sodas.

Once all of our meetings were over, everyone went to the Hyatt for drinks. I politely declined the drinks and enjoyed an ice water. If anyone asked, I told them I was on a body building plan and was eating/drinking healthy. No one gave me crap about it, which was nice. Then we went to dinner at Houlihan’s. I again ordered water to and after 5 or 6 glasses surprisingly only had to leave the table once to go pee.

When it came time to decide what food to order, I looked closely over the menu. There were a few options that looked healthy, but looks can be deceiving. When trying to figure out what is healthy at a restaurant and what is not, menus can often fool you. Most places will give you a list of the nutritional information if you ask for it. Sometimes they even have a separate menu that has all of the nutritional facts about each dish. Tonight, though, I turned to technology. I very inconspicuously searched Google for Houlihan’s nutritional information. They had all of their nutritional information readily available online. With modern technology it is making it easier to be more conscientious about our food choices. It was hard to find anything under 1000 calories. The first thing I looked for was chicken or fish dishes. I figured the Salmon would be pretty low in calories and high in protein. Even within the Salmon, though, one option was almost 250 calories more than the other one. The Wood Grilled Salmon came with mashed potatoes and broccoli as the sides and was 788 calories. The Simply Prepared instead had a panzanella bread salad and grilled asparagus as the sides, but only clocked in at 554 calories. I ordered the Simply Prepared, but they accidentally brought me out the mashed potatoes and broccoli as the sides. I had to send it back to get the right order, but they finally got it right.

The Salmon was delicious and contained 44g of protein. I easily could have eaten 1000-2000 calories without hardly trying. Appetizers were passed around the table which looked very good, but I politely declined them. My entree even came with a soup or salad. Not realizing this, when asked by the waiter I quickly chose the french onion soup thinking that it would be mainly broth. I looked up the calorie content of the french onion soup after the waiter left and realized it was 248 calories just for the soup. I discreetly pulled the waiter aside and told him that he didn’t have to bring the soup – that I would be fine with just the main dish. Restaurants really like to serve you a lot of food these days. Even the portion of Salmon was probably a little larger than it should be, but at only 554 calories for the whole meal I didn’t balk at it. I ate everything except for the few pieces of panzanella bread that came with it, so I was probably actually less than 500 calories.

After I got back to the hotel later that night, I consumed some beef jerky and an all natural fruit strip for my last meal. Heading to bed now and will be hitting lower body first thing in the morning. If you learned one thing at all from this post, ask restaurants for the nutritional information when eating out. You’ll be surprised that many times what you think is healthy sometimes is really not!