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Old 04-17-2011, 11:42 AM   #1  
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Default Free food for a month - Would you eat healthy or take advantage?

I'm on a business trip right now. It is a 1 month assignment and he client is paying for everything (lodging, rental car, food). I am 2 weeks into the assignment and I am ashamed to admit that I've taken advantage of the "free food" pass by eating whatever I want in the restaurants, which is usually the tasty/bad stuff. I've been getting my meals from TGIFs, Champs, any pretty much all the major restaurant chains within the area.

I usually do not get assigned out-of-state business assignments where the client pays for everything, so part of me feels like I should take full advantage of all the perks.

If you were in my position, where you had to eat out everyday for 1 month and all the food was paid for, then what would you order from restaurants? Would you splurge?

I just love the new freedom I have about not having to think twice on the cost of a meal. I enjoy the freedom of being allowed to have whatever I want without worrying about money for once in my life. I am tired of eating out though. I miss a home-cooked meal. I can't wait to come home in a couple of weeks.

Last edited by FreeBird3; 04-17-2011 at 11:46 AM.
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Old 04-17-2011, 11:54 AM   #2  
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wow that would be very very tempting. i'm sure if it were me, and we are being honest here, i'd be pigging out the first week or two- then get sick of it. after a while of eating food like that i find that i just don't feel well - i'm always kinda tired and always kinda have a stomach ache.
it's also hard because most of the big chain restaurants while they do serve some sort of diet friendly foods, the choices aren't exactly delicious. applebees under 500 stuff- i did not like anything i tasted. plus in order for me to tolerate being there i need a darn drink! red robin, too many temptations. i think you could probably make some good choices at outback steakhouse, or any of those. or with thai food, not so much chinese food though. there's always sushi, teppanaki places, sandwich shops.
but - **** yes i'd be taking advantage of that!
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Old 04-17-2011, 12:28 PM   #3  
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I would try to eat as healthy as possible--cause my jeans are too darn tight already!!

Last edited by ddc; 04-17-2011 at 12:29 PM.
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Old 04-17-2011, 12:47 PM   #4  
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I'm in this situation often. The GREAT thing is you can splurge on expensive healthy stuff. Lobster, shrimp cocktail, lean cuts of meat. The other thing is that clients really do appreciate it when you are a bit frugal. Throw in a couple days of subway salads, grilled chicken (no mayo) from mcdonalds...
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Old 04-17-2011, 12:53 PM   #5  
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I'd order the lobster! Seriously though...fatty, calorie dense foods are CHEAP (i.e. Mickey Dees, Applebees, TGI Fridays, etc.)...

That is why that type of food is most readily available to people who live below the poverty levels.'s the HIGH QUALITY, low fat, nutrient dense foods that most just simply cannot afford.

Don't sell yourself short by gorging in cheap foods, like cake, cookies, icecream and fried foods...go for something quality (if this is allowed by your client), and seriously...order the Lobster/Filet Mignon. Perhaps a nice dessert (flan, gourmet cheesecake, etc.) would be in order. Bon Appetit!
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Old 04-17-2011, 12:53 PM   #6  
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Originally Posted by ddc View Post
I would try to eat as healthy as possible--cause my jeans are too darn tight already!!

LOL - I guess my will power isn't as strong as yours. I do select salads half the time when going out for dinner, but I know they aren't healthy choices either. Oh well, I guess I'll end up coming home with more weight to lose.

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Old 04-17-2011, 12:56 PM   #7  
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Well, first I have to admit honestly that what I should do and what I would do may be two different things if faced with the same circumstance.


There's a difference between taking advantage of an opportunity and using it as an excuse to eat unhealthy. It's using it as a license. The truth is that there are many healthier choices that you can make, that are also a splurge. Whether or not you choose those options is your decision to make. This is a lifelong journey and eating unhealthy food for a month straight will not only prevent weight loss/pack on more pounds, but will mentally set you back. Part of the journey is learning that eating unhealthy on a frequent basis is not something to view as a 'reward/indulgence', but that it is detrimental to your health, physically (obvious weight gain/poor nutrition) but mentally (a setback in goals) too.

So when you go out, feel free to enjoy (we often experience this too with my husband's job), but make better choices - seafood is often the most expensive thing on the menu but one of the better choices. It's okay to choose salad instead of fries. It's okay to not order dessert.

Give yourself permission to take advantage of no dishes, no cleanup, and better health. Give yourself permission to buy that $20 salmon fillet with no butter and a side salad - you might think it's not worth it's value if it came out of your pocket, but it's not your pocket
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Old 04-17-2011, 01:23 PM   #8  
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I'd use it as an excuse to eat killer salads and seafood. I don't feel good at all if I eat off plan any more, and traveling is a challenge, but it can be done. If I can do it, you can too.
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Old 04-17-2011, 01:46 PM   #9  
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I travel off and on for work and I eat fairly healthy when I do. I make sure I have a fridge in my hotel room and will prepare some healthy meals in the hotel when I can. Eating out is a nice novelty until about day 5 when I'm ready to go home and back to my own kitchen.
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Old 04-17-2011, 02:23 PM   #10  
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I'd eat sushi for dinner, probably buy some oatmeal or toast and almond butter for breakfasts, and then have light lunches from a nice place that served local meats and veggies.

Chain restaurants don't appeal to me at all.
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Old 04-17-2011, 03:21 PM   #11  
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I would take advantage in that I'd buy all the expensive organic food I wanted xD
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Old 04-17-2011, 03:31 PM   #12  
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When I'm out of town, I always eat at the local dives vs. a chain restaurant. I can go to Round Robin anywhere, but there's only one of Berkeley's Homemade Cafe or SF's Dottie's True Blue Cafe. Local dives are always willing to tweak something in the meal to make it what you really want.

Using the Bay Area (again) as an example, I'd be on plan most of the time, but I'd plan on a greasy disgusting meal from Grubstake in SF. <drool>
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Old 04-17-2011, 08:55 PM   #13  
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I would get all the healthy stuff because that is usually what cost the most. I can get cheap bad for you food anytime lol
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Old 04-18-2011, 01:02 AM   #14  
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Oh man, this is so tempting because I am one of those people that will eat, overeat and eat more at a buffet just to get my money's worth (or so I think!)

But right now, after being on this weight loss journey, I would hate to ruin 6 months of progress in 1 month because let's face it, that could easily happen. Maybe try and order healthy options and once or twice a week, order whatever you feel like.
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Old 04-18-2011, 01:14 AM   #15  
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Waste or waist.

You think its a free meal, but what is the real cost, not the $$$ but physically.

I would try to enjoy the food but within healthy limits, as you are only harming yourself in the end and all for the sake of free food. It still has a cost in the end.

You know I used to go to parties thinking oh what the ****, its free, might as well enjoy it.. but you know that was me the morbidly obese very unhappy person , no wonder I stayed that way for 10 years as now I have a totally different mindset.

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