|Here are my secrets to staying in top shape.|
I'm telling you selling or competing in BBQ is a competitive sport. You have to get your body into some form of athletic conditioning just to survive the long hours. Now for most, this form of exercise is currently lifting beer to chin repeatedly and includes the art of chewing lots of 'que.
That used to be me, and I'm no Aaron Rodgers even tough I try to be on top of my game. I give that guy a lot of credit. Last year I lost 100 pounds with the help of a little something called willpower and some advice from my personal friend bodybuilder Mike Turkin. Truth is I'm on the move from April to October doing fairs, festivals, and catering events and the extra weight made me feel lousy. I was sluggish and felt like a pile of greasy lard. So, I came up with my own game plan called The Barbecue Workout. Here's what I learned along the way which may help any food vendor or bbq competitor stay in tip top shape!
|Eating on the go: A major issue. Here I am driving up the Susquehanna.|
Traveling Fast Food Eating on the Go is a No No
One of my big lessons learned was what not to eat on the go. I travel up and down the East Coast selling barbeque, so it's very important to not hit the drive in fast food places along the way. I find a coffee and some sweetness like grapes curbs my appetite while in the truck driving long hours. If I'm not in the mood for coffee or get too jittery I opt for some cherry juice. Lots of benefits of this at the cherry juice blog.
Yeah, I crave the mighty burger, but I know that there will be a time and place for that later. Why waste all my fat and calories with one swipe at McDonald's? Just not worth it because after eating that crap I feel like a pile of sludge and ready for a nap. Better save those calories for later, I could think of better food to use them up on.
|Talking to my pal Eric with South Carolina BBQ.|
I'm lucky in a way because I have a lot of physical labor in my job, meaning I have to set up my wooden stands piece by piece, put up my tents and haul out my heavy grills (also known as artillery for the bbq zone). I go in like a warrior and take my punishment, almost breaking my back on some of this heavy crap. I've gotten smarter as I've aged, and started welding wheels onto everything. I suppose this power lifting during set up really helps keep the muscles in shape. More calories burnt saved for later.
Staying Mobile and Busy
I spent long hours in the stand. I'm there before the public setting everything up, staying mobile. I'm cooking before they get out of bed. While they are having their coffee, I'm running around like a chicken with my head cut off. While they venture out to the fair, I'm about ready for a nap because I've gotten four hours of sleep in two days. I find things to do rather than sit my butt down in the chair. Once I sit down, it's only a matter of time before the nap attack comes.
|Almost burnt my legs up!|
Heavy Meal Eating Noon or Mid Day Not Late
I really try to eat my heavy meal around noon or mid day, instead of later at night. Now I do eat a nice big 'ol Texas Angus Burger, or a piece of sausage, or some barbecue. I am not going to skimp on a good meal. The key here is I eat during noon or mid day, no later than 2:30, and that fuel is with me for the rest of the day. I don't eat this way all day long, and most cases I'm working an hour after the fair closes. So, if I am starving at midnight, it's salad time.
|Old West Style: Me and my Texas Brush.|
I have fallen off my "diet" several times now, gained some back and lost some again. Truth is, I don't be too hard on myself, I just get back up on the horse and ride. You have to give yourself some credit. It's hard not to eat all that barbecue, especially when it smells so good.
There's nothing wrong with a nice sized portion, meat and pork is very good for you, contains proteins and does a body good. As with anything, balance it out with some movement and exercise, and it's all good.
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