When Eating Out ISN’T Convenient Or Even Good Tasting

The Foodie’s Wonderland!

YUM! Imagine having 478 places to get burgers, pizza, ice cream, fast food, or whatever food your stomach desires…all walking distance from you!

You could satisfy every single food craving you will ever have in your entire lifetime, with just a 5 minute walk.

Extend that to the entire city and you have 25,462 food places…

OVER TWENTY-FIVE THOUSAND!?!?!

Drooling Homer Simpson
flickr photo shared by auweia under a Creative Commons ( BY-NC-SA ) license

AND, imagine having that while you’re on VACATION!

Ooooooo, that sounds like a dream come true, doesn’t it?

That’s exactly the foodie’s dream that I’m living right now, in Los Angeles, CA, for 4 days, and out of all the infinite options I have, this was the first meal I ate…

Here Comes The Crazy…

Boring colored, clumpy, dog food look-alike stuff

On closer inspection, you might be thinking that it looks like some kind of weird ground meat…cooked in a tiny pot?

Yep, that’s exactly what it is 😉

And better yet, here’s all the food that I’ll be eating during this 4 day trip…

Deceptively boring looking “health foods” just a salad away from blinding junk food lovers

Are You Confused Yet?

You’re probably yelling “blasphemy!” and throwing things at your computer screen right now, and okay, I’ll admit that I am kind of a weirdo when it comes to food…

I actually like eating my own home-cooked foods more than I like to eat out, no matter the food.

Even if I want something like a pizza, pasta, burger, or whatever else, I’d rather cook it myself than get it from even a top notch restaurant.

(BUT don’t worry, I am still human and I do eat out; I just don’t do it for the food usually. That sounds weird, but I’m a complex creature OK…I’ll explain this another day.)

And it’s not even to save money or that I’m some crazy health fanatic that won’t even sniff a cookie.

If I want a cookie, I’ll eat a freakin’ cookie!

So, now you’re probably wondering, “what the heck is wrong with this guy?”

I Swear, I Can Explain

Well, here are 3 reasons why I sound like a strict “health food hippie” right now instead of wining and dining like any normal and sane person would do:

  1. When you choose exactly what ingredients you want to use, how you want to cook your meal, and how you want to season it, you’re virtually guaranteed to love what you eat (you know what you like to eat better than anyone else does and you don’t need to be Gordon Ramsay or Rachael Ray to be able to cook basic stuff)
  2. When you love eating food, have been cooking for yourself for over 8 years, and keep finding new ways to make it more efficient, convenient, and tasty, you can’t help but start having fun cooking…dare I say you would start to love cooking?! :O
  3. I’ve gone through an extended period of time when I didn’t cook at all and only ate out at restaurants or ate convenience foods and it did bad, cringe-worthy things to me; my side-effects during that time included becoming pre-diabetic, putting on about 10 more pounds of fat onto my body compared to my baseline, and being so low energy that I regularly wasted entire days in bed just sleeping (18 hours and 51 minutes wasted on August 8, 2014 to be specific which I know because I’m a weirdo who has logged his sleep into a sleep tracker every single night for almost 4 years straight, and still going strong)

That last one is always a reality check for me because it shows the insane power that food has, but even then, food isn’t just about eating healthy all the time to prevent health issues and weight gain:

To me, food’s about living your best life, which includes a life full of foods that you enjoy eating, the energy to do the things that you love, and a healthy body and mind capable of doing anything you dream of doing during your life.

To explain my first and second points a bit more also, just now when I got hungry as I’m writing this, instead of running outside to pick up some random fast food (which probably would have taken at least 30 minutes for me to get there, order, get the food, and come back), I took 7.5 minutes to cook eggs, which includes the time to get the eggs out of the fridge, oil and heat a pan, crack the eggs, cook them, put them on a plate, AND take this crappy photo of them for you:

“Eggs Extraordinaire” – 7.5 minutes in the making

AND THEY WERE DELICIOUS!

It’s the exact opposite of what most people would think comparing fast food to home cooked food, but this was actually more convenient and satisfying to me than any fast food I could get at 5 am while writing this (is anything even open except drive-thru’s?) AND it’s giving me the clean energy I need to finish this article for your reading pleasure.

On top of that, remember when I said I had pre-diabetes, put on 10 pounds of fat, and was super lethargic during that cringe-worthy period in my life?

By eating foods just like the ones in the second picture up top, I reversed my pre-diabetes, lost those 10 pounds of cushioning and then some to reach a new baseline of around 5.7% body fat (as of checking 30 seconds ago out of curiosity; I never even checked for over a year because health was my priority, not weight, but if you do it right, the fat can magically burn itself off), and I’m still super energetic while finishing this post after almost 6 hours of nonstop writing.

(Side note for you mathematical folk: yeah, my vacation sleep is messed up working from 11 pm to 5 am instead of sleeping, but hey, it’s a vacation!)

Yep. I want to let all that sink in, so just pause and think about that for a second.

…seriously, did it sink in yet?

And by the way, remember the first picture above of the ground meat that I cooked in the tiny pot?

I used the same ground chicken to make jalapeno chicken stir fry with mixed vegetables for another meal.

Come on! That sounds GOOD to you, doesn’t it? (You can admit it to me, I won’t tell anyone.)

Not So Crazy After All, Right?

So, even with almost 500 food places within a mile of me right now, I’m not even tempted to eat at any of them because of everything we’ve just talked about here.

BUT, that doesn’t mean I’m always so boring and abnormal that I never eat out; whenever I want to, I still eat whatever the heck I want.

Like this enormous deep-dish pizza:

10 pound deep dish pizza of death

I wish I could be super cool and tell you that I ate the entire thing in one sitting…but let’s be honest, I probably would have died on the spot.

And If I didn’t, this cheesecake from Harris Ranch in CA (the best I’ve ever had in my entire life) probably could have finished the job:

Probably the best cheesecake on the planet, thanks for the recommendation Lauren!

Everyone’s always talking about that elusive unicorn called “balance”…well, I think I just nailed it with these two!

A Happy Ending

Anyway, long story short: food is complex, but there are ways to indulge your inner foodie while also maintaining health (or even rebuilding it like I did) and balance really is the key here.

And now, I hope you aren’t still throwing things at your computer screen, because I want you to join me in using food to live your life to the fullest too.

And no, you don’t have to banish all the foods that you enjoy eating (unless you really really want to, I guess), you won’t have to spend hours cooking just to eat healthy if you do it my way, and you don’t have to become a strict “health food hippie” either to start building the health you want (trust me, I have plenty more pictures just like the last 2 and I still rebuilt my health from the dumps, am only 5.7% body fat, and have tons of energy to live my best life!).

I’m keeping it simple, fun, and powerful to show you how you can experience food, health, and life in a completely new light.

So join my Inner Circle for free here so I can share more fun stories with you once a week!

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See you on the inside.

To Your Health & Happiness,

Ankur