Picture this, sitting right on the bottom shelf of your refrigerator is a plastic travel container packed with a proper portion size of leftover food from the night before, along with individually bagged apple slices, a nice medley of almonds with raisins, and two 20 ounce water bottles to help wash all that nutritious food down.
But the problem is you ran out of the house in a hurry and completely forgot you had packed all this delicious food to take with you to work.
Question now, how will you stick with a proper eating agenda when you left home without healthy food?
First off, there’s no need to throw your hands up in the air and say “oh well” and opt to get a double bacon cheeseburger combo from the nearest fast food spot at lunchtime. Nor does it mean to order the biggest lunch special and soda at the cafeteria at work when it’s time to eat.
Just because something didn’t entirely go as planned does not mean to throw in the towel and revert back to bad eating habits. Not only will you end up feeling guilty afterwards, but you know that eating in this manner will do nothing positive to help you achieve your health and fitness goal.
Therefore, if you find yourself in this type of predicament, it’s important to first determine what options you have. You want to consider healthy options as possible alternatives, not simply the nearest place to where you work.
Remember, your body only needs a certain amount of calories per day. Generally between 1,500-2,500 depending on your age, gender, body type, and physical activity level. When you think of food in this manner, you will see that eating a lunch that is over 1,500 calories in size is using most, if not all of your daily allowance at one meal which means you will most likely overeat that day and in turn, gain weight.
Here are a few ideas to consider if you left home without healthy food. On your way to work stop by a supermarket or grocery store to buy a couple of fruits to have for snacks. They may also have prepackaged salads (watch out for the dressings) or you can get a frozen healthy meal. These meals taste great, and are usually between 250-350 calories in total.
What a difference from the unhealthy fast food options which generally go way over 1,000+ calories. Best yet, frozen meals are usually only around $2 each which is far cheaper than any meal you will get out there. You will just need to have access to a microwave at work if you choose this route.
If there aren’t any markets near your workplace, your only option may either be a fast food restaurant or the cafeteria at work. If this is the case, then extreme caution needs to be taken so that you come out of this experience on top.
Subway can be a great option if you choose carefully and maintain self-control. In other words, a six-inch ham on wheat with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, salt/pepper and mustard with a cup of vegetable soup and water is MUCH healthier than a pastrami on white bread with double cheese and mayonnaise with a bag of Doritos and an extra-large soda. That’s about 900 calories different so don’t think that by simply going into Subway everything will be a healthy choice.
If your only option is a restaurant or cafeteria, you should first carefully check the menu for healthy options. Many popular chains now have a section within their menu for low-calorie, healthy meals. Your server may also have a few suggestions, so don’t forget to ask.
Try to select options like a salad instead of french fries. Certain soups instead of breadsticks. Definitely avoid those sodas and calorie packed desserts. What a waste of calories right there!
Finally, if you must order a large meal as your last resort, don’t feel as though you must eat the entire thing at that one sitting. An easy way to cut half the calories out of this meal is to ask for a “to-go” box/bag right before eating so you can put half the meal away to take with you. Tie it up and put out of sight so you’re not tempted to dig in after you finish your portion. You can also ask the server to do this at the onset before bringing out your meal and they may be able to accommodate you.
Hopefully you remember some of these tips if you happen to have left home without healthy food and you will not have to succumb to the unhealthy temptations that are plastered on practically every street corner.