You might be making the same mistakes and not even realize it.
Don’t feel too bad, we all have blind spots.
Sometimes we need others to show us what we can’t see. Only through growth and guidance can we see the picture more clearly.
If you’re feeling lost in your own journey, you might relate to not being able to see your own path towards success right now.
In this story, a routine weekly check-in suddenly became a celebration of seeing new things, which is why I asked Chris to share it with you.
Most importantly, as you read this, consider that six months ago, not only was the best choice not an option, it wasn’t even visible just half a year ago.
…but the real cool thing?
It was there all along.
Putting New Experience To The Test
It’s been over six months since I began learning about nutrition with Nick, and the changes were evident this past weekend. It was as if the “Old Chris” and the “New Chris” met to discuss the best things to eat while out.
Let me set the scene for you: I was working an outreach event for work at a local park on Saturday and Sunday. The event would last from before breakfast until well past lunch. With limited time for breaks, I only had 30 minutes to grab something to eat from some place nearby.
Thankfully, this park has a café in their visitor’s center, so I didn’t have to go far to find something.
When I walked in, I first noticed the sprawling board of options. Despite a fairly large menu for such a tiny café, I was still concerned about finding something that would be healthy and keep me satiated through the day.
Choices From Yesterday, Meet Choices From Today
Looking over the menu, I was surprised at how my instincts in the last eight months have changed. In that moment, two versions of myself were studying the menu and comparing notes.
“Old Chris” identified two options that he would have chosen immediately – and duly complimented himself for making such fine, healthy choices.
- a chicken-salad salad
- a roasted vegetable and hummus sandwich
Fortunately “New Chris” was there to jump in and save the day. He proceeded to break down why these aren’t the best…
Old Chris: Chicken Salad! What can go wrong here? It’s chicken breast in a salad – that’s a good thing, right?
New Chris: Hang on, that’s chicken-salad, not a chicken salad. True, there’s protein – that’s great – but there’s also a lot of mayonnaise. Do we really want to eat that much soybean oil? Soybean oil is kind of gnarly. Eating too much of it creates inflammation, and the thought of eating that much mayo over two days is not something I’m looking forward to doing, especially when I have to be active, positive, and full of energy.
Old Chris: But wait, there are vegetables too!
New Chris: True, but what kind of vegetables are they? The salad seems to just be iceberg lettuce and a few tomatoes. Given the number of vegetables we now eat daily, that really wouldn’t make much of an impact either way.
Old Chris: Point taken. Okay, if I’m looking for veggies and protein, why not go with the roasted vegetable sandwich then? I love roasted vegetables!
New Chris: Roasted vegetables are freakin’ awesome – but wait a minute, how were they roasted? What kind of oil was used? And how much?
(The questions start building.)
On top of that, I’d like to know more about the hummus – yes, hummus contains chickpeas, which are delicious, but they’re a food we have to eat in moderation to stay on track to meet our goals.
You mentioned veggies and protein – and while chickpeas do have protein, we have to consider them a carbohydrate because of their ratio of carbs to fat to protein.
On top of that, if the hummus was commercially produced, it’s actually considered a fat because of the added oils, tahini, etc. that would be included.
And what kind of oils would be used? See the soybean oil conundrum above.
As I was listening to these two debate the menu, the wheels began turning, and suddenly a new option appeared before me. This new logic took me to a place I would never have gone eight months ago:
A breakfast burrito.
Old Chris wasn’t convinced – you know what they say about old habits. Despite his newfound confidence and leadership, New Chris was still deflecting arguments from Old Chris:
- It’s probably greasy
- It’s probably full of fat
- It’s probably over-processed
There are A LOT of probably’s in there. But what’s actually in the breakfast burrito?
(I had no idea until I asked.)
As it turns out the café’s breakfast burrito is made with eggs, cheese, and salsa in a tortilla, and for an additional charge, I could add grilled chicken breast, ham, or bacon.
OMG. That is kind of awesome.
New Chris’ ears perked up. This has the potential to pack a protein punch with very few problems.
[New Chris takes the mic.]
New Chris: Let’s break it down. Eggs are fatty, but they have a lot of protein. Same deal with cheese. Upgrading to add the grilled chicken boosts the protein factor – and the flavor as well. The tortilla is a carbohydrate (doy), but it’s so small compared to the other components of the meal, it is completely acceptable. The amount of salsa is so small, it really doesn’t affect our daily vegetable intake, but it adds flavor, making the meal healthy and tasty. Score!
Before I started training with Nick and became conscious of the food I was eating, I would never have chosen the breakfast burrito as my healthy option. Truthfully, it probably would have been close to the bottom of my list because of all my preconceived ideas about the meal.
New Chris was proud and Old Chris was a little embarrassed.
Good Choice, Confirmed.
On my second day of outreach, the woman behind the counter commented on my meals. She intimated that I was making an unhealthy choice by eating these burritos regularly. I had to laugh; my body fat is decreasing considerably and my muscle mass is growing. I’m in the best health I’ve been in possibly ever. Meanwhile the woman advising me on my choices was overweight and visibly out of shape, but she was still suggesting I try the chicken salad as a healthy alternative.
Thank you for your advice ma’am; I think I’ll stick with my burrito.