For many people, embarking on a weight-loss journey can be an emotional time. Learning how to change your eating habits to create the required calorie deficit needed to lose weight can be difficult. But for those who have an active social life and regular dine out in restaurants, the weight loss journey can seem much harder.
With the average restaurant meal exceeding 1,000 calories per meal (50% of a woman’s daily calorie requirements) it’s easy to believe that eating out could be the worst thing you can do when you’re trying to lose weight. But expert health and fitness coach Sam Cleaver, Director of Ipswich-based Stoic Performance, believes that we should be able to combine a weight loss journey with an active social life.
He says: “I often hear from my clients that they’ve stopped eating out or having drinks with their friends because they are afraid that it could hinder their weight loss. To me, this is a sad indictment of the way that society has changed. We shouldn’t worry about having a nice meal with friends because we need to take the time to enjoy our lives and being social is a key part of that. What we need to focus on, is ensuring that we’re equipped with the knowledge to make the right food and drink choices when we’re eating out.”
“That doesn’t mean that we can only eat salads; it’s about knowing what works for our specific bodies and how this can change throughout the course of the month. Some people may find that their body can cope with carbohydrates much better than others, whilst others may find that a high-protein diet suits them better. It’s important to realise that we’re all different. Once we start to understand what works for our bodies, we can make better food choices when we eat out, without worrying about how it may hamper our weight loss efforts.”
As a qualified health and fitness coach, Sam works closely with clients to help them get stronger, lose weight and improve their overall health and wellbeing. Taking an analytical approach to fitness, Sam can often be found analysing client’s personal health data (such as body temperature, HRV and blood pressure levels) to help them make improvements to their eating habits and workout routines. To support them on their journeys, Sam has devised a series of “Survival Guides” to some of the UK’s top chains including Costa, Nando’s, Burger King, Hungry Horse, Nando’s and many more.
He says: “Eating out should always be a pleasurable experience and it’s good to see that more restaurants, fast food chains, and takeaways are being more transparent about what goes into their food. If we know what choices we’re making, then we can ensure that we’re equipped with the best knowledge to support our needs.”
“My survival guides are a great way of helping my clients understand what the best menu choices are. Each guide is complete with the full nutritional information for thousands of meal options and each one is colour coded so you can see immediately how many calories it has. This makes it much simpler for people who are calorie counting to keep track of what they can eat. If they know that they only have a certain number of calories available, then they can choose that specific colour bracket allowing them to easily make the right choice for their individual macro nutritional targets.”
Sam’s survival guides are just part of the package he offers his clients. As well as helping them to train more effectively, he’s conscious about educating them on how to improve their nutritional habits. He has a series of recipe books which are provided to clients each month; each feature delicious meals complete with full macro nutritional breakdowns and what’s more, they each feature a dedicated barcode which is compatible with MyFitnessPal.
To find out more about how to download one of Sam’s survival guides, or to contact Sam directly, please visit www.stoicperformance.co.uk