Healthy and Sane

Eating rules

March 3rd, 2010 · 19 Comments · Boston, breakfast, dessert, Eating out

I’ve been emailing back and forth with my sister yesterday. We are both going on tropical vacations in about a month and would like to look and feel our best. We both eat healthy most of the time and exercise nearly everyday but that doesn’t mean there is no room for improvement. Although my sister finds this fact laughable, she inspires me quite a bit. I think she can even inspire some of you. [Innz, I hope you don’t mind that I’m sharing this.] Here are my sister’s new eating rules:

1. Plate EVERYTHING before eating it. It’s crazy how many times I just go into the jar/ bag. I thought I was pretty good about this stuff — until I started paying attention. Even if you take 4 servings of something, seeing the 4 servings on a plate will make a difference.
2. Don’t eat standing up. Kinda goes with the above one. The “I’ll just take a bite” thing happens way too often with me (including this morning).
3. Don’t eat in front of the TV. If you want to eat — turn it off. Then turn it back on. Concentrating on what you are eating.

Further from Inna… I know I’ve heard all of these a gazillion times before, but I started doing these on Sunday and I can tell a difference in how I think. I have to keep stopping myself b/c I’m about to “break a rule” many times each day.

Back from me…

I think so many of us “break” these rules and this is basic stuff that DOES make a difference. I’m the worst with eating while reading emails, blogs or watching tv. For a while I tried to be more mindful, but then I got busy and that went out the window. Plating is another big one. I obviously plate most of my “real” meals since I write this blog, but sometimes snacks here and there still end up in my mouth and that’s the stuff I NEED to eliminate. A few almonds here and there really does add up. I’m trying to remember Inna’s rules as I shape up for my upcoming vacation (and these are good eating rules in general so hopefully they stick even after the vacation). Now let’s see how I did…


Food for Life (FFL) english muffin – 1/2 with Barney Butter, 1/2 with cherry preserves + banana & coffee




One of my favorite breakfasts for sure. Simple and hearty!





I’ve been SORE from yesterday’s Rack it Up class but I knew I still wanted to get a run in. I saw some sunshine outside and decided to make it an outside run. I find outside runs to be so much more intuitive. On a treadmill you set the pace and try to keep up. Outside, your body tells you the pace it wants to go at (unless you need to push yourself for an interval or a tempo run). My legs were tight and rolling didn’t help so I took it eaaaaaasy. Just went slow for 40 minutes and was happy just to finish. I tried to enjoy my surroundings and it worked. 40 minutes, 4.3 miles, 9:18 pace. Done! :mrgreen:


Total randomness in a bowl – not sure I’d recommend this combo but it was very filling – lots of healthy fats!


Mixed greens, broccoli, carrots, sardines, avocado, baba ganoush, parmesan shavings + 1T Annie’s goddess dressing


Alton Brown likes the avocado + sardines combo so I thought I’d give it a go. It was a good one. The baba ganoush, however, was tasty but did not belong here.


While whole wheat toast on the side for extra carbs. :)



I’m going to add another rule – eat treat meals out with friends or family instead of at home alone in copious quantities. We implemented this rule by going out with friends to La Verdad for $1 tacos (Taco Tuesdays are the best!!). The place has a really fun decor and fabulous, creative (yet authentic) tacos. Plus, you really can’t beat the $1 price tag! That’s my kind of happy meal. 😉



The chicken tacos and 2 types of pork tacos are included in the $1 special. I ordered 1 of each of the pork ones + 2 chickens. These tacos are quite small.


Chicken tacos…


Pork tacos…


Something about them was off today. I normally adore La Verdad’s tacos but one of them had onions and too much fat and the rest seemed dry. I think my batch may have been off because everyone loved theirs. I’ll definitely be back there for more thorough research 😉

For dessert, Adam was craving Berryline (we were in our old neighborhood). I thought he was crazy because it was freezing cold out but I’m so glad he convinced me to go. It was (as always) amazing! I got my usual combo – small original with mango and pecans. Man, I missed this!



I didn’t count calories today and I know I was over, but I felt good about my choices. I guess for the most part as long as I follow some eating rules, things work out. Do you have eating rules you try to follow?

Related Posts with Thumbnails

19 Comments so far ↓

  • #1 - Lauren @ Eater not a runner

    I am totally guilty of eating in front of the TV way too much! I do try to follow the plating rule, definitely helps a lot…

  • #2 - Sophie @ yumventures

    I LOVE your sisters rules! The worst thing I do is snack while I’m cooking…I’ll be so hungry for dinner, but still have to cook it, so I’ll eat enough food to call it dinner before its even served! This is a great idea to plate everything and sit down, then I won’t be as tempted to snack while I still have pots to stir! Excellent =)

  • #3 - sister inna

    hey! of course i don’t mind sharing 😀
    i was just telling mom last night how much i like sardines. never would have thought to combine them with avocado. gonna have to try that out tonight 😉
    and now…. i see pinkberry in my very near future yuuummm

  • #4 - MelissaNibbles

    I also follow the don’t eat until it’s plated rule. I started doing it a few years ago. It makes a huge difference and I’m at the point now where I never stick my hands in bags or jars of food.

    I need a taco.

  • #5 - Jen

    Normally I just try to eat healthy and because I run a lot this seems to work out. Although, there are times (like weekends and bad days) that I eat WAY too much crap! And, I always feel bad about myself on those days! The next day I try to eat lots of greens. :) I find that starting my day with a good breakfast really starts a good day! And, havng a plan for dinner instead of just going home and eating quick helps too!

  • #6 - Nicci

    I thik those are some good eating rules. I need to work on turning the tv off when eating dinner.

  • #7 - Diana @ frontyardfoodie

    Great rules! I started plating all my food a while ago and it really does do wonders. I like it because I can choose the proportions of veggies, to carbs to protein really easily.

  • #8 - Katie @ Health for the Whole Self

    I think your sister’s rules are great! I actually recently posted about trying to eat without distractions, if you want to check it out!

  • #9 - Cara

    I certainly agree with saving treat/cheat meals for out of the house. Part of the reason I try to be “so good” during the week is so that I can eat out a nicemeal on the weekend and not feel obliged to order the plain grilled fish or chicken with veggies! (not that that’s not tasty, but, you know…)

  • #10 - Nicole, RD

    Great pace!

    I agree with your sister’s rules completely! I love the plating food before eating one — this is key for me. I think blogging — plating and picture-taking — has helped me to slow down and really enjoy what I create. I definitely have a much stronger appreciate for food’s beauty and taste since beginning to blog!

  • #11 - RunToTheFinish

    those are fantastic rules to keep me from adding random calories to my day!

  • #12 - Alice

    I’m actually trying to get rid of food rules! I’ve had some many for so long, and some that were just ridiculous – i.e., no carrots or pumpkin because they were too starchy. Ridiculous!

    Rules are certainly good for some people and I envy those who can happily follow them in a regular, ‘healthy’ way :) Although one thing I try to follow is not ‘crappy’ sweets – like, cheap cooking chocolate while I’m making cookies. Wait for the cookies, girl!

  • #13 - One Healthy Apple

    I’ve definitely been plating more with blogging, although you can hardly call what I do photography! I also try to slow down when I eat and that helps too.

    Finally, I’ve been doing crazy things like drinking water lately. Sometimes it’s good to go back to basics.

  • #14 - Jenna

    LOVE the plate rule! That makes so much sense, I really have to start doing that.

    Oh man your eats look good :)

  • #15 - Shannon

    ooh, berryline :) now i’m craving yogurt! i need to work on these rules, too. i’ve closed the kitchen for tonight, and i’ll have to see if it works…

  • #16 - Lele

    Is that Trader Joe’s white whole wheat bread? Because seeing it in your blog reminded me it existed and it is like my FAVORITE SANDWICH BREAD ever!

  • #17 - Elina

    Lele – yup. TJ’s white whole wheat bread. I like it too :)

  • #18 - Jenna

    Great tips!!

  • #19 - Kathleen

    My rules are as follows:

    1. Only have dessert at night after dinner (and I wait about 2 hours to eat it)
    2. Pair lunch and dinner with a salad
    3. Always eat protein with carbs
    4. Limit sugar in the morning