How to Eat Outside The Cave: Restaurants, Work, Vacation

How to Eat Outside The Cave: Restaurants, Work, Vacation

Of course it sounds easier to eat the right things when you have 100% control like you do with pre made meal prep.

First of all thats not a lot fun

Than again maybe you enjoy this kind of predictability

None the less, we all have to leave the cave and sometimes that always includes eating outside of it as well.

So how do we go about eating out?

This proves to be a big issue for many lifters.

They feel lost and somewhat hopeless that they will do the right thing to stay on track and progress towards their goals.

Questions we’ll try to answer for you lifters eating outside the cave:

  • What to eat and how to prepare
  • How to eat while on vacation
  • How to eat at restaurants
  • How to eat at work 

The first principle that you need to learn works universally for almost every challenge with eating: be as prepared as you can in every possible situation. This means you are being PROactive and you aren’t just REacting to what is happening around you.

Whether you’re going on a work trip, vacation, or out to eat at a restaurant, the better you know your options and plan ahead, the easier it is to do the right thing and progress. Of course, it takes some effort initially, but it starts to get much more automatic as you make it a habit.

For example, a health-aware person doesn’t go to work (or starts a whole work week) without knowing what and where he will eat that week. You definitely don’t want to be deciding while standing at the restaurant counter. The same thing applies to any type of situation you could find yourself in outside of your home.

You should always know what kind of food they serve beforehand when you eat at a restaurant. This is very easy to do because every single restaurant promotes their menu on the internet. Most places will even list the calories. Making it that much easier to hit your calorie goal and stay making progress.

Since most of us have to go to work, we want you to prioritize your work-week meals ahead of time. If you want to save time and energy, you can prepare your meals beforehand and stuff them into lunch boxes to wait in the fridge.

Don’t think of it as a tedious chore, but an investment into your health. At the same time, you will be able to avoid unnecessary temptations since you already have a healthy meal with you.

If you have a good workplace cafeteria or other place to eat during the workday, go ahead, but still be prepared and plan ahead. You can either prepare for a week or a day ahead, whatever suits you, as long as you are proactive not reactive.

The second principle you need to know is to focus on what matters most, protein. We know protein is the most important nutrient to pursue in our diets for several reasons.

1. It’s necessary for the function & recovery of lean muscle tissue
2. Helps with satiety (anti temptation)
3. Found (*animal products) with the other essential macro nutrient, fat.

  1. Can be turned into glucose if needed (low carb)

    Since inadequate protein or fat consumption can lead to worsening our health & fitness we can justify prioritising protein rich meals while passing on the carbs.

    So what about on vacation?

This is a tricky one for many of us… We hardly know all the details ahead, so it is harder to plan. Everything depends on the nature of a trip.

For example - if you are travelling by car, you can take breaks at the gas stations and choose amongst the options there. When travelling by plane or train, the options are more limited, but you’d always find some good alternatives.

The main principle here is to go with the most natural food (as opposed to processed). If you have an option to buy a hot dog or salad - or a chocolate bar or an apple - choose the second option.

Once again, protein is your best friend and the most important thing to be seeking out when you’re eating outside your predictable cave.

When travelling on trips I typically stick to only eating a few things out of convenience and practicality when commuting.

Beef Jerky, Fast food Burgers (no pop or fries), Apples and Nuts like cashews or walnuts.

With these I can easily get all my calories in and balance my fat and carb intake.

3 of these 4 things I can bring along with me, which makes the burger a much more enjoyable “cheat meal”.

Lastly, for eating while on vacation, unless you’re going on vacation frequently and for extended periods of time, just relax and enjoy it. You’re not going to gain 5lbs of pure fat in 1 week. Avoid or limit the liquid calories and just focus on hitting your protein intake or slightly more for the added satiety that prevents you from over indulging in snacks & carbs.

That’s it. It’s that simple. This is going to be a game you win mentally.

I hope I have given you some food for thought when eating outside your home lifter. If you remember this one thing it will guide you to success everywhere - the better you plan ahead, the better the results.

Make this a priority to become a new habit: thinking ahead. 

Leave a comment