AMF, Moochi and I are headed to the Michigan Football Game Tomorrow! Go Blue!!!!!
AMF suggested I do a post on healthy tailgate foods today. Here’s are my tips for healthy tailgating:
1.) DO – pack your own food with enough to share. No one likes the person who shows up to the tailgate with a cooler of exactly 3 extra super light beers, 3 oz of lean meat, and their own personalized portion of light ranch and carrots. Way to rub it in everyone’s face that you are the healthiest of healthy tailgaters AND be stingy with your goods. Instead, bring items for everyone to enjoy that happen to fit your own dietary needs. What if no one eats it? Bring them home and you won’t have to meal prep for your next few meals.
2.) DO – have fun with your flavors and ingredients. Tailgates are notoriously unhealthy (chips, alcohol, cookies, dips, hot dogs). Try bringing something fun and different that you will enjoy eating and look forward to so you wont feel deprived when you avoid unhealthy items. Try my Greek Turkey Burger Recipe below! I also recommend making veggie dip with fat free greek yogurt mixed with dill, a packet of fiesta ranch or a packet of onion soup. Use a 32 oz tub of plain greek yogurt with a whole packet of spices.
3.) DON’T – allow yourself to get off track from your goals by consuming too much alcohol. My first Weight Watcher’s Coach suggested that I alternate between alcoholic beverages and water at parties. I thought she was crazy (I was also 21 and in college). Plan ahead for the amount you will drink and do not drink more than you’ve allowed yourself. Pre-track it in myfitnesspal or your favorite calorie tracker before you even go. Are two extra beers worth blowing all your hard work? Are they really worth two extra miles at the gym? If you drink those extra beers, will you really have the self control to keep out of the chips and brownies? For me, the answer is nope. Alternating drinks and water is a great way to pace yourself at tailgates and make sure that the drinks you’ve allowed yourself last.
4.) Do chew gum when you’re near the chip table. I have grabby hands – I figure, oh just one chip, a half a bite of this brownie, a quick taste of this cookie dough. Next thing I know I’ve had 10 quick tastes.I justify it because I’m just “trying” it. I now chew gum when I am cooking treats for friends and family because chewing gum makes me think twice before I take a bite of whatever I am making. When you’re chewing gum, you have to remove the gum and dispose of it before you can have that bite or the gum will be ruined. I apply the same rule at tailgates and parties where I know there will be quick bites of foods I do not want to eat, but may just grab a quick bite or piece without thinking. Chewing gum is a great way to keep yourself out of the chip bag and from “trying” three brownies.
5.) Don’t beat yourself up and give up if things don’t go the way you planned. I’ve been successful on many diets – losing 10, 20 even 30 pounds. Eventually I’d give up and put the weight back on. There was a common denominator in all my failures – failing at my diet and then just eating without abandon because I “couldn’t do it.” What is different this time? I will not let a bad meal, a bad day or even a bad week end my diet and reverse my progress. I will reach my goals no matter how long it takes. I’ve lost 65 pounds in 14 months – that’s an average of less than 5 pounds a month. There is not much difference month to month, but look at my before and after pictures – what a difference! I’ve taken “breaks” of up to a two months where I just attempt to maintain my weight, but nothing is going to stop me from reaching my eventual goal. A bad day is just that – one bad day. Don’t let it ruin your progress. You can do it. It’s hard to lose weight, but not TOO hard.
Healthy Tailgate Turkey Burgers
1 lb ground turkey (extra lean, if you can find it)
1 tablespoon greek seasoning. I LOVE this one.
1/2 cup reduced fat feta cheese
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup diced red peppers
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix by hand, shape into 4 burger patties. Grill on a preheated grill for 4 minutes on each side or until browned and cooked through. Serve on a lettuce wrap and with Veggies and dip!
145 calories (28 grams of protein, 2 grams of carbs, 3 grams of protein)