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KASTRA's Photo KASTRA Posts: 369
6/26/14 11:36 A

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Will pleading responsible financial budgeting help your argument to cut out more of the fast food? My family used to eat out 3-10 times a week, were steadily gaining weight (which was not necessarily a problem for our son who is a healthy weight although it wasn't nutritious-healthy), and were broke despite net salaries that should have us making great headway on our bills.

We bought an inexpensive budgeting software - You Need A Budget (YNAB) - which is fantastic and encourages steady progression for users to eventually start living this month on last month's income with a comfortable nest-egg set aside for emergency savings funds. When we started tracking our actual spending in actual "Everyday Expense" categories (Restaurant budget, Groceries budget, Fuel budget, etc.) it was shocking to us how much we were blowing in restaurants and suddenly very clear why we were broke despite making decent money. We set a much more reasonable goal and when we've spent the money in our restaurant budget...well, we cook every meal until we get paid again. We were the sort to swear how expensive "healthy eating" was until we saw how expensive unhealthy eating was. Our grocery bill has gone up considerably, but it's nowhere near the difference we cut out in wasted restaurant money. We now budget just enough for either ONE nice sit-down restaurant a paycheck (every two weeks) or 2-3 cheap take-out meals a paycheck. That's it, and that's all we do. Lately, we haven't even been spending all of that because we've opted to finding similar recipes to fill those craves. (For instance, we were craving Italian this week after a yummy anniversary dinner last weekend, so rather than go out again, we made a fantastic meatball recipe and slow cooked them to go with whole wheat angel hair pasta and a perfectly seasoned marinara to pair with our homemade salad. It really hit the spot last night, was much lower cal than we'd get if we bought it, and was pennies on our budget as compared to the restaurant bill would have been for the same meal.)

Just an idea that might help you encourage him to change up his own thinking about the value and benefit involved in those quick stops. While he might not need to lose weight, we could all use a bit more pocket money...so maybe appealing to that aspect may hit home with him.

Edited by: KASTRA at: 6/26/2014 (11:39)
Starting: 41.1 BMI and extremely sedentary
Current: 28.0 BMI with strength-training and low-impact cardio
Mini-goal: 29.9 BMI (about 164 lb) - DONE on 8/6/14! I'm no longer obese!
Mini-goal: 5K walk or run
Mini-goal: 24.9 BMI (about 136 lb)
Mini-goal: half-marathon walk or run
GOAL: 23 BMI (about 125 pounds), fit and active


 current weight: 163.4 
 
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RENATARUNS's Photo RENATARUNS SparkPoints: (3,938)
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6/26/14 11:07 A

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I think on some level you're just going to have to set some boundaries. It's your life, you know? Not only his.

You can get away with eating fast food sometimes. As a previous poster suggested, you can choose a hamburger or cheeseburger and small fries, with water, for IIRC about 500 calories. Less if you do the "steal some of his fries" trick and keep the total to less than a small fries would have been; or if you occasionally skip the fries entirely. That's not going to blow anyone's diet (if you manage to stick to just that for your meal and not have extra later), and you could probably get away with that multiple times a week if you really wanted to. [Now if you absolutely have to have something with more calories when you go, then you have very good reason to keep it less frequent than that.]

Now do you want to? I'm guessing probably not -- all else being equal you'd rather have something tastier and more substantial than a McDonalds hamburger, and you're only in it for the social importance of keeping your boyfriend happy. So set some boundaries. You will go once a week and no more, for instance, and if he wants to go other times he has to go by himself. Tell him not to guilt you talking about "strict diets" -- you're compromising your ideals enough as it is. Hopefully it works out.

I do actually agree with him in some sense, though. Your list of diets you've tried sounds like every gimmick in the book! Can you aim for something a little more sustainable and flexible from the outset, so it's not a constant tension of being perfect or totally cheating?

Height 5'8 1/2"
SW: 190+
CW: 141.0 Woohoo!

5K 4/21/11: 31:55


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EELPIE's Photo EELPIE Posts: 2,669
6/26/14 10:51 A

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I'm not gonna touch at all on McDonalds as a food choice - I'm just gonna give you a little warning about portion control.

It's very easy for a woman who made the dinner and is putting it on the plates to dish out the same size for adults - be wary of that. Men need (on average) more calories than women. So watch how much you give him, and how much you serve yourself.

Conversely, when he hits McDonalds and orders a quarter pounder with cheese and large fries - don't order the same (especially if you aren't "starving"). Order for yourself a small burger or cheeseburger, and steal some of his fries, or order a small fry for yourself.

One other thing to think about - one weekend day batch cook something fabulous, and healthier, low cal, lower fat - slow cookers are awesome for this - and with summer here, they don't put off heat in the kitchen - check out slow cookers recipes here or on a site like allrecipes allrecipes.com/recipes/everyday-cooking/sl
ow-cooker/
.

Portion it up and freeze it. When these situations occur in the future, it's easy to say "Honey I've got that teryaki pork in the freezer, let's have that instead" Plus, think of the money you will save.....

The best exercise in the world is to bend down and help someone up.


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FIELDWORKING's Photo FIELDWORKING SparkPoints: (26,335)
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6/26/14 10:33 A

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I don't eat fast food much, but when I do, I try to go for the something small. For example, at McDonald's, I'd get the McDouble and some fries (small or maybe medium depending on what I had already eaten that day). You could get water, milk, juice, or tea to drink. I think most, if not all McDonald's, have some nutritional info posted on the menu. As others have noted, check out the nutritional value online of a restaurant before going or check out several places now and make a note of which items or meals are the healthiest. I know that there are apps out there that give you an idea of the nutritional value for various restaurants and are also free.

Sure, they may be problems with many of the choices available (i.e., too many calories, too much fat, too many carbs, too much sodium, etc.), but I think it's ok to eat these things once in awhile. Personally, I think it's more about the big picture when it comes to nutrition. Basically, it is about making changes to the way that you eat so that you don't fail. What I mean is, it's better to aim for healthier options and ways of eating (more veggies and fruits, less processed foods, etc.) and allowing yourself to splurge on treats or less healthy meals on occasion.

If one (maybe two) meal(s) out of 21 are not as healthy as you'd like, it's ok. Think of it as a treat. Instead of one or two meals out of 21 seems like too much. Think of it as 1 or 2 meals out of 42.



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VEG_GIRL04's Photo VEG_GIRL04 Posts: 771
6/26/14 8:52 A

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As others have pointed out - figuring out a real livable healthy way of life rather than a diet will help you keep your long term goals. I'm not cutting out everything I love - but I'm tracking, and adding more workout, and restraining myself - but still allowing indulgences and things I love. That makes every day so much easier and not about a "diet."

Please knock your boyfriend in the head for me. While my fiance sits around and eats fudge rounds and cheesecake after a nice healthy dinner - he does not encourage me to do so. He knows I've made this choice for myself to do better, to lose weight and to improve my health. It's not about him changing his life to match yours - but he needs to be more supportive and understanding. Would he have a reason to be sabotaging you like this? Explain to him that life would be a lot easier with some encouragement. (I know my life surely is!)

"If you're going through hell, keep going!" - Winston Churchill


TRIPLEMWF's Photo TRIPLEMWF Posts: 843
6/26/14 8:49 A

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Everything in moderation. You can still go to McDonald's and just order either a plain Hamburger or get a cheeseburger, small fries and a diet soda. I've been known to order myself a kids meal. Or their salads actually aren't too bad either. I find that I do my best when I pre-plan. If you know that your BF likes to go to McDonald's, then take a look at the nutrition information online and find yourself a new go-to meal. Even if you already had dinner, treat yourself to an ice cream, they are pretty reasonable calorie wise.

I would do the same for other places that you frequent. For example, I love the chips and salsa at Chili's, so I have a go-to dinner that is pretty low calorie so that I can still enjoy the chips.

If you never treat yourself, you are more than likely going to fail. Temptations will be every where for the rest of your life, and I don't know anyone strong enough to resist them forever. So instead of eating the whole pie, just have a piece, instead of eating the pint of ice cream, have one scoop. Like I said, everything in moderation.

You'll never regret the workout you do, only the one you don't.


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NIRERIN Posts: 12,035
6/26/14 8:41 A

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go to the mcdonald's website. figure out the nutritional information of your usual. then use that as a benchmark. your goal will be to find an option, or several, that's just a little better than what you usually get. make a list and keep it with whatever you will pay with so that it's with you when you need it. as you try the things on your list, mark them if you like them or not. as you find the lower cal, better for you options that you like, try to cut back bit by bit while still getting something that you like. it's not impossible to lose weight eating at mcdonald's, but it is a trickier situation.

do you work out when your bf works out? do you have the lean muscle mass of your bf? do you eat breakfast and lunch and all your meals together? do you go to the bathroom if your boyfriend goes to the bathroom? there are some situations where you will do the same things as your bf [using the bathroom at the same rest stop on a car trip for example] and it makes sense. but most of the time you can't calibrate your needs exactly to another person's. which means that if he wants a late meal after you're already done, go with him for company, but don't eat an extra meal if you don't need it. have a coffee or some apple slices or the kid's ice cream [i think that's supposed to be the lowest cal thing on the menu] while you keep him company. not eating when you aren't hungry and don't need the extra calories isn't strict dieting, it's listening to your body and following your own needs. and if he pushes you, come back with numbers. start by figuring out your bmr and his bmr. then add in your daily activities. then add in any exercise and total them up, side by side, in black and white. point out that while he has room for a 700 cal meal at the end of the day, you do not. it's not you being contrary or strict, it's that your a smaller person with less muscle mass and you've opted to balance your calories out through the rest of the day. and just like you can't run as fast as he can or lift as much weight as he can or reach stuff on the top shelf as well as he can, you can't eat as much as he can. tell him that everything you physically do is about 30% less than him [or whatever it was based on the numbers you already showed him]. it doesn't mean you don't want to do things with him anymore, just that there are going to be a wide swath of things that he has to accept that you and he have to do a little differently if you do them together.
and i'm not trying to say that you'll never be as good as your bf. it's just that, like reaching the top shelf in the kitchen, someone who is 6'2" tall is going to have a lot easier time doing it it than someone who is 5'2" tall. using a chair will still get the shorter person the desired object from the top shelf, they just have to do it a little differently than the taller person. just like the shorter person has the advantage when it comes to the bottom shelves, particularly in the back. when it comes to burning calories, men, due to more muscle mass, burn more calories than women do. if you both wanted to burn 200 cals in a workout, you might have to work twice as hard to get to that same number. it doesn't mean you can't do it, just that it may have to be in a different way. sort of like being right or left handed.

Edited by: NIRERIN at: 6/26/2014 (08:53)
-google first. ask questions later.

LEC358 SparkPoints: (9,740)
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6/25/14 6:16 P

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Your BF is right about one thing, strict diets do set you up to fail, that's why SP helps you change your whole outlook towards food. You need to pick something that will work for you, long term. Take some time to read some of the articles on here about eating healthy on a budget and/or when you're short on time. Frankly, once I started cooking for myself (I cook a big entree on Sunday and eat that for the week), fast food lost a lot of it's appeal to me.

I'm in a similar position with my BF where he can eat everything in sight and is *under weight* for his size. So he's like: let's have a bag of Reese's cups for dessert and I'm like: how about 1? emoticon



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ROXZGIRL Posts: 3
6/25/14 5:34 P

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So in the span of time that I've been trying to reach fitness goals, I've done everything from strict Vegan diets, fish based only, to simply white meat only diets but I always break.

I find that things like time restraints (I work and I'm a full time student) drive me to grab fastfood; but so does something else, I realize...

My boyfriend.

He's 6'2", about 150 or 160 athletic build and slender and he eats literally EVERYTHING.
Which wouldn't be problematic if not for the fact that he can sometimes influence my poor eating choices.

I got off late last night and considered going straight home simply having a glass of water and calling it a night; but he insisted that McDonald's would be a great idea, "Strict diets just lead to failure anyway" as his reason.

But I feel so guilty when I eat fast food. It's almost not worth the joy of indulging.
But I have so much trouble resisting when the person I live with eats it so often.

Anybody have any experience with this type of thing? I could use the advice emoticon

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