Day 19: Managing Your Inner Rebel
TODAY'S SHIFT FROM FAT TO THIN THINKING:
True celebration and relaxation happens within me and not in the glass or on the plate.
Welcome to Your Thin Thinking Practice Day 19
Did you know that people consume an average of 250 calories more per day on the weekend? Yikes! The reasons being that we typically are around more food, our lives are less structured so we “boredom eat”, and we typically are more social and go to parties and eat out at restaurants. Why not? It’s the weekend, and we deserve it because we work so darn hard.
That’s why it’s even more important to manage your Inner Rebel on the weekend. You can still treat yourself and have fun but you can learn to do it in a way where you stay connected to yourself and your larger vision of what your fulfilling life is all about. It is important to me to stay connected to myself with my Inner Coach--even in the heights of letting my hair down and getting away from it all.
I call it Living Large Without the Large
After all, I’m sure most of you are not living out your life just to have written as an epitaph “Ate a lot of great rich and fattening restaurant meals and lots of unmemorable gakky party food!”
Today’s coaching: Living Large Without the Large (below) walks you and your Inner Coach through some great strategies for eating out and social events.
Today's Shift From Fat To Thin Thinking: True celebration and relaxation happens within me and not in the glass or on the plate.
Rita's Coaching: Living Large Without the Large
In my opinion, most of the successful actions you and your Inner Coach make with regards to parties and eating out happen before you even get to the restaurant or event. If you have an intention of how you want to behave in the outside world mapped out in your head before you step out the door, your chances of following through will be dramatically increased--because you will have cognitively set your intention, or created a template for the night, so to speak. This helps you negotiate with your Inner Rebel ahead of time and gets them to sign off on your intentions.
Think for a moment of all the things you think out beforehand in other areas of your life: meetings, trips, how to get to places you don’t know, etc. Why don’t we practice this with regards to going to food situations, if we are challenged in this arena?
There are many variations on planning, and different scenarios call for different mindsets.
Head Game 1) You are prepared and know what you are going to order (and what you are not), how many calories it has, and how to ask for it to be prepared as well (a lot of restaurants do list menus online, and if they are a chain, they will have nutritionals--calorie content of most foods on the menu).
Head Game 2) Okay, so maybe you don’t know the caloric content or what you’re going to eat, but you know how many calories you’re allotting for this experience and know basically what it will look like. Example: Wine 150 calories/ protein 300/ veggies 100.
Head Game 3) Tonight you are going out to have a good time and have allotted calories (example 800), but want to stay open to ordering.
Shift Restaurant/Party Vision: One thing I always use and try to pass on to my clients is to create a vision in your mind of you at the door of the place you are going to through a vision of you leaving the restaurant or event having stayed connected to yourself during the dining experience, feeling light, and that you have taken care of yourself.
It’s a challenge in this day and age of “Food as Entertainment” to go to a restaurant without food being the central focus. But take on the challenge of having other goals for the night other than eating—like having a break though conversation with your friends or loved ones or enjoying the restaurant itself—the décor, the lighting, the comfy chairs. Connect with yourself and the environment and you’ll quickly become one of those annoying thin people who has the bread basket in front of them the whole time but doesn’t even notice because they’re too wrapped up in noticing the shape of the salt and pepper shakers.
As you enter the restaurant, there will be a number of stimulus control challenges. When you do your pre-restaurant map in your head, you may think about problem solving some of your trouble areas.
Even before you sit down—the smell and atmosphere: Again, restaurants know how to set the mood for indulging. Give into the romance, but remember, they are there to get you to do one thing—order food and lots of it.
The waiter: Baby, don’t fear the waiter. Okay, so the waitperson is there to sell you food, and they will do their best to push the specials and get you to drink. How do I know? I used to be an annoying waitperson when I was in college. Here’s the challenge, befriend the waiter. They are really there to serve you and hope to be rewarded with a good size tip. If you ask nicely, they will do the best they can.
The cocktail offer: This is up to you and your plans, but don’t feel obliged just because the waiter has that “come hither look” in his or her eyes. If you get seduced easily into the drinky-poos, really practice saying—“just water, please.” A tip I will share is to wait to have wine with dinner, and it’s easier to just have one.
The Menu: If I know vaguely what I am planning to have before I open the menu, my eyes scan over all of the seductive prose and focus on what I can have. If you don’t have a plan, the world has one for you, and restaurant menus are designed to get you to order about 1200-1300 calories on average just for your main dish.
Read between the lines--find what veggies the restaurant has by reading what they are serving with the main courses. I’ll create my own salads with the lower calorie options from all of the salad choices. I have also had restaurants make a plate of all of the lower calories veggie sides. I’ll ask for pasta without the pasta and veggies instead with marinara on top. I’ll have an appetizer for dinner. I have them cut the meat in half and package up the other half and have them bring it to the table when the meal is done. I’m a real pain in the shifted bum, but I often get customers and waiters telling me that my creations look yummy and that they wish they had ordered it that way.
The basket o’ carbs and fat on the side: Remember, if you have a plan, you can create yourself as a person who only eats ___ amount of chips or ____pieces of bread. I suggest avoiding it unless the stuff is heavenly—substandard bread and chips really are a waste of calories.
The ordering experience especially with others: Don’t be shy. Here some tips to avoid getting razzed when you make healthy requests with a group of people who are out to not eat healthy. Order last, that way no one is paying attention to you. Never say you are on a diet because no one wants you on a diet, especially when they want you to pig out and have a good time. Little do they know that pigging out actually disconnects you from yourself and is not really the good time they think it is. If they get defensive about you ordering healthfully and say “why are you dieting tonight, it’s a special occasion?” or “you look thin”, or “why are you so boring?” Simply tell them that you have been making healthier choices lately, and it just makes you feel better. They can’t argue with that.
The Chef: The chef wants you to think he’s a genius god and makes the most delicious food. How does he do that…with butter! Yup, butter and lots of it will make just about everything seem 5-star. But chefs are people, and if you tell the waiter to tell the chef that you would love for him to create something with a tiny amount of fat with veggies and protein—he will rise to the occasion. If the restaurant is not too busy, cooks love a challenge. They are bored stiff from dishing up all of the usual slop from off the menu. Flirt with the chef by telling the waiter, “poach the fish for me, please.” Poached is sexy, poached is moist, poached will save you 200 calories but deliver you amazing moisture and texture in your food.
Dessert Time: Here in the land of sugar and fat I think the 3-bite rule is the best strategy. Give your taste buds a thrill ride and enjoy, but know when to jump ship before it get’s scary. The idea is 3 bites of any rich dessert is about 100 calories. Or, make a lighter choice like fruit or sorbet and just add the calories.