Dining out

by Christine on August 17th, 2010

filed under Christine's Life Updates, Diet, Food, Nutrition

Yesterday I had plans to go out to dinner with friends. I wanted to take Jack out to dinner (and his lovely girlfriend, Jen) to say thank you for forwarding my resume to the publishing place. He works there and was able to send my resume to just the right person, plus put in a good word. When someone does you a favor, it’s polite to say “thank you.”  I told Jack to pick out a restaurant that they’d like to go to.

Unfortunately I had to play socialite without my husband at my side. He had work on the other side of the state. To chaperone us, I invited some mutual friends along.  Although I think I have learned how to play the part of gracious host very well over the years, it is not something that comes naturally to me. I’m an introvert by nature, with an ability to mask it and make others feel at home. I did well in that capacity yesterday, although at times I got nervous and said the most ridiculous things. Sometimes I wonder whether my brain is truly attached to this body….

Knowing I was up against restaurant food, I did some pre-planning. We were going to Wheatfields, a Saratoga Springs landmark restaurant. Fortunately they have their menu online for perusal.  This is where things got tricky for me, especially now that I have the gastric band to contend with.

What sounded really good? The orange roughy. But at $28, it was an expensive choice, and I knew that I would only eat a quarter of it. Fish doesn’t re-heat well, and the next few days are so busy that I’ll not likely have the opportunity to eat the leftovers. So, it’s mostly a waste of money.

I just can’t do pizza. Period. I can’t do lasagna. Or gnocci. I can’t do most pastas at all, actually. The appetizer with olives and cheese sounded do-able and at $9 was a reasonable price, but I had several cheese items the day before, and I was conscious that getting a cheese platter as a meal would definitely be overdoing it.  I could do the chicken or pork chop, but to be honest that didn’t even sound good to me.

Weighing the options, I finally settled on the three-cheese ravioli for $12, knowing that I was taking a risk with the pasta. I had one ravioli, and then felt the “bottled-up” feeling kick in. I had to slow down. One ravioli, and I look and everyone is finishing up their dishes. Oh no, hurry up and digest, stupid body! I took another ravioli and opened it up to eat the mushy riccotta cheese, discarding the pasta outside.

Two raviolis in 90 minutes. It might be a record. It’s been several months, maybe a year, since I had a pasta dish. Now I remember why.

Needless to say I have a lot of leftovers.

At $120 (for my, Jack, and Jen’s meals), I was partially glad that my hubby hadn’t been able to join us. It was well worth the money for the career help.

(In other hubby news, he came in 8th at Star Wars CCG Worlds!!)

I found something really strange after the meal. When I ate that ravioli, I was STUFFED. 30 minutes later I was STARVING.  I finally acquiesced and had another ravioli when I got home, which left me feeling STUFFED again. 30 minutes later I was STARVING.  I finally realized that it was the empty carb from the pasta that was making me so hungry. I hadn’t experienced this ravenous hunger like that in a long time, probably because I hadn’t had pasta in so long. So beware of your pastas! It’ll fill you up temporarily and then leave you starving for more food soon after!

I do keep track of how much I eat every day. I can finally just do this in my head, but I do it every day nonetheless. I don’t often post my food intake on here, but I will, just for some variety. Final tally for the day:

8 a.m.: 1 cup cheerios (100) plus skim milk (30)
10 am: almonds (100), Red Bull (110)
Noon: Canned veggie soup (90), water
2 pm:  Tunafish (70) with brown mustard, water
7 p.m.: 1 glass chianti (130) and 1.5 raviolis (80???)
9 p.m.: Another leftover ravioli (50??), 1 small piece of chocolate (60)

Total calories: 820, right on target.

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  • http://www.justquiteating.blogspot.com Debbie Lowe

    I also love pasta and it does me the same way. I get stuffed eating in, but in an hour I am hungry again.

  • Shane G.

    That is one of the things Kathy and I have clashed over and I foresee being a problem for her on her journey: she loooooooves pasta. She has on more than one occasion try to feed me just plain ol’ angel hair pasta with some seasoning, cause she likes it. Heck no, you better find some meat!! So anyway, I am not a pasta fan, unless you consider pizza as pasta and I don’t think it is. Just out of curiosity, what about the pork chop turned you off? I have come to find in nicer restaurants, the porch chops are usually pretty dang good!

  • Karenogle133

    Pasta is not a good choice for me either. I only have it at home and I use whole wheat only. Then I only have a small amount and focus more on the meat sauce or meatballs than the pasta.

  • http://www.phoenixrevolution.net Christine

    Great question Shane! Honestly, I LOVE pork chops and grilled chicken! But yesterday…they just didn’t sound good to me. It was one of those deals where, “I cook it all the time at home, why should I pay $20 when I can probably cook it better?” Faulty thinking in there, I know. The pasta, though, I hadn’t had in months, and I wanted to give it a try. What did I learn from this lesson? Get the pork chops next time anyway, silly Christine! :-) Maybe I should listen to my inner Shane!

  • Bigclydesdale

    Good for you. What a great post that demonstrates how careful we all should be when planning an evening out.

    Nicely done!

  • http://www.fittothefinish.com/blog Diane Fit to the Finish

    A lot of people are carb sensititve – it sounds like that’s what happened to you! I’m glad you had a good dinner though. Carbs don’t bother me – which is good because I do love pasta!

  • Freckle on the Nose

    Two raviolis in 90 minutes? I confess that I’m more likely to finish 90 raviolis in two minutes. 😉

  • http://www.phoenixrevolution.net Christine

    LOL! I used to be that way too, Freckle!!!

  • http://www.phoenixrevolution.net Christine

    It’s true — when dining out, a little pre-planning can go a long way, and can be a huge help to avoiding an all-out “eating-bender.” Thanks Clyde!

  • http://www.phoenixrevolution.net Christine

    You know, I actually prefer the taste of whole-wheat (er, well, as grain-rich as possible) pastas over white, blanched pasta! But I’m with you — I prefer to focus on the meat sauce!

  • Allanmklein

    Look at all the chatter on here… Neat… How about Sugar Free Red Bull ?

  • http://www.phoenixrevolution.net Christine

    Ugh i wish i could stomach sf red bull. I hate the aftertaste though.