One of my biggest obstacles is finding something on a menu to eat when I find myself out on the road away from home. From hotel menus to restaurants, it can be very frustrating and tempting to stray from eating right while out.

Just today, I went to breakfast with Isaiah. While I suggested Simply Wholesome, when we got there, it was closed. Damn, damn, damn!

We then headed over to (gulp)…Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles. Help me Lord!

Now how am I supposed resist that smell of freshly made waffles that waffling through the air? Forget the chicken, I am all about the waffles baby!

It was hard but I did it.

I didn’t even give myself the chance to talk myself out of eating right. I told our waitress right from start: one sunrise, one chicken sausage, and two eggs…thank you.

I had to. If I had given myself half a minute to think anymore about it, I’d have been eating a plate full of waffles loaded with syrup and butter. I’m just keeping it real.

While Isaiah and my girl Shon had no problems wolfing down chicken and waffles this morning, I took delight in knowing that come tomorrow morning when I get on my scale, I won’t be cussing like a sailor.

I already have a weakness for McDonald’s French Fries, the last thing I need is to start craving waffles…again.

There will be times in out lives when we are going to be faced with having to eat out. It’s just a fact. However, our decisions on what to eat don’t have to be the wrong ones.

For starters, if you’re the decision maker on what restaurant is going to be chosen, choose wisely and take into consideration your diet. Hence, my initial choice of Simply Wholesome. If I am choosing the spot, it’s going to be someplace that I consider safe territory, that way I am less likely to be persuaded into eating something that I know I have no business stuffing into my mouth.

But I don’t always get to make the decision and it’s those eating experiences where my willpower has to kick in. Be it Denny, Carrow’s, IHOP, Thai food, Chinese food, or Mexican, almost every restaurant has soup and salad. And while I know that may not be what you want to eat, you’ll thank yourself come later on when the rest of your crew can barely walk out of the restaurant.

These days, salads can really take the place of a meal and leave you very fulfilled. I recently fell in love with Sky’s Tacos salad. It’s a simple salad that you can get with chicken, ground turkey, shrimp, or salmon. I add avocado, pico de gallo, and cheese to mine, but really, you don’t even need to do that. Oh and by the way, I use salsa and pico de gallo in lieu of salad dressing! Ah hah! Less calories, less carbs.

I also dig the salads at Z Pizza, especially the pear and gorgonzola salad which I add avocado and chicken to.

And I recently had a brand new pear salad recipe from Brazilian favorite Bossa Nova. The salad include fish croquettes—need I say more?

If you’re not in Los Angeles, no worries. Almost every city has these little mom and pop restaurants and like I said, just about all restaurants carry salads.

Another tip, skip the bread and butter. You know how when you go California Pizza Kitchen and your server brings you bread and butter to the table…uh huh, you know what I am talking about. Leave it alone. In fact, tell the server NOT to bring you bread and butter as soon as you sit down so you aren’t tempted. An alternative is to ask for carrots or celery instead and more often than not, restaurants will oblige.

If you’re not much on salad or feel like you need a little more—I go with protein. So I’ll eat chicken, baked not fried, fish, but not fried and some sort of vegetables or beans.

When it comes to breakfast, I like chicken or turkey sausage, eggs (no salt), veggie omelet’s, and fruit. Say no to the pancakes, fried chicken and waffles—toast, bagels, croissants too.

Yes, it’s a sacrifice, but one that’s worth it. And like I said about the bread, once you do it enough, you’ll hardly notice what you’re missing.

I treat myself to desert occasionally. Occasionally means that I ate well that night while out and it’s been at least a couple of weeks since my last desert at a restaurant. A good alternative to traditional deserts is fruit or yogurt.

On a side note: today while driving down Adams Blvd., I saw a women almost tip over after rolling out of the car to stand in line at Johnnie’s Pastrami’s. To say she didn’t need to be in line at Johnnie’s is an understatement. She was so overweight, she literally almost fell over. When I passed my Chef Marilyn’s on Crenshaw, the line outside was filled overweight Black people—some to the point of obesity. Yesterday, I saw a young Latina girl waddle into the store with her obese mother.

I say this to say that these are all reminders to me why it’s important to keep the weight off. Since I’ve lost this weight, I can’t tell you how much healthier I feel. Sure I need to kick the Newport habit, but today I can wear heels for more than hour without feeling like my feet are going to collapse underneath my weight and I can walk or run flights of stairs without getting out of breath when the elevator is full or running slow.

I don’t use these examples to make fun of other people, but to call attention to our people. I couldn’t see it when I was a size 24, but I can see it now and I can see how unhealthy I was. And for me, who comes from a family full of diabetics, that’s not a good fit.

You’ve got to start somewhere, no one else is going to do it for you—just don’t wait until it’s too late.

Okay, enough preaching, lol. I’m just saying…

Oh—don’t forget to check back on September 16, the one year anniversary of me reaching my first weight loss goal of 170 pounds!!!

It’s hard to believe it’s been a year already…