I review food journals, field food related emails, or have conversations about food and its relationship with weight loss, muscle gain, or performance improvement almost every day of the week. Sunday is the only day that i take completely off and even though I don’t go into the gym or answer any email until late in the evening it is still a miracle if I can get through the day without someone asking me about food whether it is their diet or mine. Last weekend for instance I was in Portage Bay sitting in my usual spot eating my usual breakfast, 4 egg and prosciutto omelet with 2 buckwheat pancakes (gluten free) with 4 balls of honey butter(don’t worry I was totally in my post workout window). My server, Jean, who looks nothing like, but still reminds me of, Natalie Portman, comes up to me and looks at me very seriously. She takes a full 30 seconds before she says anything. I am hoping she is about to say something amazing like “they won’t be serving my kind in this establishment anymore” but instead she leans over and asks me how it is possible for me to consistently eat so much butter and stay so thin. First of all JEAN! THIN?! Is that what we are calling me now? Secondly, and I had to take a very deep breath because the ensuing tirade regarding the fat vs carbohydrate debate was going to be epic. Long story short I educated that sweet young lass about triglycerides, refined carbs, and very low density lipoproteins among other things. That is all to say that even when i am as far from working as I could possibly be someone finds way to get going.
“Just when I thought I was out, they pulled me back in!” I think it was Michael Scott who said that. Or maybe Michael Corleone. I can’t remember. I guess it could have been Michael Jordan for that matter.
Anyhow, food is always on the table so to speak. We can’t get away from it. We don’t want to in fact. It is good and it is good for us. Well it can be if we choose wisely. It is all about choices. We make choices about what we are going to put into our bodies every single day. Some choices we are making in the moment as we grab a snack between meetings from a poor assortment of things that just happened to be in the office break room. Other times we are making choices days in advance as we load up our Costco shopping cart. If it is in your house you are probably going to eat it so your first line of defense is whether or not you bring it home. On that note I suggest you don’t go grocery shopping hungry because you will make some really really really poor choices. I find that I spend at least 20% more money when I shop hungry and come home with things that I would normally never buy.
Back to the topic I originally sat down to share with you. This weekend we had two delicious and wildly different meals. I commented to Erin that they both costs the same in terms of dollars but the return was significantly different.
I have the good fortune of sitting down to dinner with my family 5 or 6 nights a week. Erin cooks fabulous things and we sit down amidst good smells, take our time, and chew our food. It is pretty great. We have even been lighting candles lately because the C monkey loves a good flame. Saturday night I walked up to the market, Pike’s Place for those who don’t know that I live 200ft from the gym, and bought a king salmon fillet, a pound of broccolini and a few sweet potatoes. I grill the salmon, baked the sweet potatoes and Erin did something magical to the brocolini. It was an amazing dinner and we got to have the satisfaction of eating local, home cooked, nutrient dense food. The meal cost about 30 bucks. This evening the only thing I would accept for dinner was a cheeseburger. Cheeseburgers are the reason I don’t do paleo. Cheeseburgers are the reason I won’t do a lot of things. I would push the C monkey into a pool to beat her to the last cheeseburger at a family bbq. Tonight was cheeseburger night and nothing else would do. Red Mill was calling my name. If you want to get into a Seattle cheeseburger debate with me after class on Tuesday I am taking all contenders. Red Mill was happening and my girls were just going to have to deal with it. I don’t go into Red MIll that often so when I do it is a bit of an ordeal. French fries or onion rings? Chocolate shake? Single or double cheeseburger? Bacon? The answers to those questions in order are both, yes, TRIPLE, and hell yes! If I am going to do it I am going to do it right. Erin had a very tasty looking(not really) lettuce wrapped burger and my little carnivore had a meat patty with a piece of cheese on it with two strips of bacon on top of that. Oh and about 6 fries. It was amazing. I feel pregnant. Erin looks pregnant. The C monkey had her first taste of milkshake tonight and I thought she was going to cut me when I wouldn’t give her any more. The whole meal cost about 30 bucks.
I mentioned to Erin that our dinner last night and our dinner tonight cost almost the same but man there was quite a difference in quality, experience, nutrition, macronutrient profile, and so on. Flourescent lights in a diner vs candles at our own table. No pre dinner smells wafting into our sensory system preparing our minds and guts for the pending dining experience. No modeling for my little girl regarding, shopping, prepping, cooking, presenting, blessing, and enjoying our food. I guess we were still supporting the Seattle economy. We spent the same amount of money but the value of the two meals were light years apart. The feeling in my belly right now as I type this tells me yesterday’s choices were much wiser. We are making food choices every day. These choices all add up in a variety of places. Our wallets, our waist line, or health bills and in tons of other places that we don’t think about all that often. What message are we sending to our children with the food that we consume and have them consume? Where can you make better choices regarding the food you buy(hunt?), prep, cook, and eat?