What To Do When You BLOW Your Carb Budget


Traveling Low CarbI just got back from a super fun whirlwind trip to Connecticut and back. As much as I’ve been traveling lately, squeezing this trip in was a little bit nuts – but it was totally worth it. πŸ™‚

My favorite band (The Avett Brothers) was playing at the Simsbury Performing Arts Amphitheater last Sunday night, plus I have friends in the area.

So on a tight schedule, I flew in for just ONE night and had an absolutely amazing time!! That quick of a trip, and booking it all last minute to boot, was a little tight on the budget… but it also ended up stretching my carb budget too. Ugh!

Fortunately I am still down my usual pound this week.
You can see my current stats here:

I woke up a pound lighter this morning. πŸ™‚ That's always a great feeling! I've lost 8.4 pounds in the last 11 weeks.I'…

Posted by Low Carb Traveler (Lynn) on Friday, June 19, 2015


…but it brought up a great topic, which someone just asked me about yesterday. Oh the timing! (lol) And that’s “what to do when you blow your carb budget” – or have a higher carb day, intentional or not.

It started not long after we landed in Hartford. We were famished, and decided to enjoy a good lunch at Bear’s Smokehouse BBQ, which happened to be right beside our hotel – so it was super convenient.

I ordered what I thought would be super low carb: Half Rack Ribs (“no sauce please”) with steamed green beans and broccoli salad for the sides. I looked at the ingredients for the broccoli salad: broccoli, mayo, raisins, onions. I decided I’d just eat the broccoli and eat around the “pretty stuff”. All good, right? It turns out “no sauce” at Bear’s means no EXTRA sauce (which I next saw them PILE on top of another person’s ribs). I order ribs with no sauce all the time, and LOVE them, but these came pre-sauced:

Bear's Smokehouse BBQ

I should’ve ordered the pulled pork. I should have ordered something else as soon as I saw they were already sauced. I was exhausted, in “zombie mode” after getting up at 2am and traveling all day, and just said “screw it” and accepted the tray.

BBQ sauce is full of sugar. A good low carb alternative is Guy’s Award Winning Sugar Free BBQ Sauce. Note: Because it is sugar free, it won’t stick or caramelize like regular high-carb sauce, but I’ve heard it’s GREAT for pulled pork.

So I ate the ribs. All of them. I licked the bones clean, lol. I picked at the veggies really, just had a few bites of those, and then we were off to meet up with friends for the concert that night. The concert was AWESOME, by the way – as usual. πŸ™‚

Avett Brothers Concert in Simsbury, CT

Here comes the second “carb splurge” of the day…

You couldn’t bring drinks or food into the venue. Fortunately we’d already eaten – but the beer selection was seriously limited. I chose the best of all bad choices (lol): Bud Light. YUCK. πŸ˜› I usually drink Michelob Ultra, which I really enjoy out on the lake or at a concert. Mich Ultra is 2.6 carbs per bottle. Bud Light is 7 carbs per 12 ounce bottle. I had THREE 16 ounce cups. Ack! That’s 26 carbs for my beers alone!

On the upside, I got TONS of exercise that day. πŸ™‚ Of course, that doesn’t really matter since you can’t “burn off carbs” – but exercise is always good anyway, lol.

lowcarbtravelerThe concert was SO much fun! It’s my absolute favorite band to see live, and we were super close to the stage – right on the front row at one point. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

There was lots of dancing involved. And a little kissing! lol… Totally awesome.

So I totally blew my carb budget for the day already, and right at the tail end of a big challenge too! Bummer.

I’m not one to beat myself up though. I just continued enjoying the great company, fun trip, and made the healthiest choices I possibly could. Which brings us to dinner after the concert…

There were few places open in a small town that late at night, but we went to a great local pub with outdoor seating to grab a bite to eat and hang out for awhile. At this point I was drunk on my 26 carbs worth of beer (I’m such a lightweight! lol).

I should have ordered a salad. I wanted to order a burger & fries. I ended up getting “shrimp boats” instead. Unfortunately there was a bit of flour in the pan fried shrimp that went over the “lettuce boats”. So beautiful thick crisp lettuce boats full of shrimps, topped with a cucumber/carrot salad. It was totally delicious! And semi-healthy really, not TOO bad.

Being a locally owned restaurant there were no nutrition facts, so I played it safe and counted them as “bang bang shrimp tacos” in MyFitnessPal. Yes I track, super close, even when I’m traveling. πŸ™‚ Or at least do the best I can.

All said and done the day didn’t total up as HORRIBLE. My best calculation is 65 net carbs. But I normally eat 20 carbs a day or less, so that’s more than triple my usual carb intake. That’s kind of like if you only have $100 to spare, and you spend over $300 instead. πŸ˜› Damn the beer! Right? lol.

I’ve had worse days than that (haven’t we all?!), so I know exactly what to do…

What To Do When You BLOW Your Carb Budget

1. Don’t make bad choices. (lol, not *always* possible, I know!)

2. Make the best of the bad choices available.

3. Don’t beat yourself up over it. Forgive, smile, track, and keep going.

4. Don’t use one bad choice as an excuse to blow the whole day (or week, or month). Continue to eat as healthy as possible from that point forward.

5. Track it. Even if it’s bad. Ignoring it doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Eating it in the dark, or in a closet doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Track it. That way you can see how it affected you, and keep an accurate diary of your health journey.

What you should do if you cheat/treat:

Eat SUPER CLEAN for the next 3 days.

That means super low carb, only real food, and shoot for 3 ingredients or less per plate. No bars, no shakes, no fancy recipes, no products full of ingredients you can’t pronounce – just real food, real simple, real low carb.

There are two MAJOR downsides to higher carb days:

– You will likely kick yourself out of ketosis, and have to go through the low carb flu all over again. UGH. That’s me this week: relentless headaches, painful leg cramps, insomnia. Deserved punishment. lol

– If you suffer with arthritis, fibromyalgia or any other inflammatory issues… you’ll likely be back in pain due to the fact that carbs and sugar promote inflammation in the body. Expect to be bloated, have potential tummy issues, and possibly deal with your old pain issues again too.

Also see:

How To Get Your Diet Back On Track

Eating Low Carb In A Carb-Filled World

About Lynn Terry

I love making the low carb diet EASY for people with a busy lifestyle (like me!) with my KISS / Keep It Simple method. :) About Lynn Terry: Host of the Low Carb Challenge
This entry was posted in Low Carb Daily Journals, Weight Loss. Bookmark the permalink.


8 Responses to What To Do When You BLOW Your Carb Budget

  1. L.M. says:

    I thought you were also having a low carb meetup on this trip?

  2. L.M. says:

    No, I am in Florida. I follow both of your blogs, so I think maybe I misunderstood which type of meetup it was supposed to be. I thought it was a low carb meetup. I like reading about them and seeing what everyone ordered. πŸ™‚

  3. L.M. says:

    Ooops. I just re-read what you wrote. I see, no one responded to your request to meet up for a low carb meetup. That is too bad πŸ™

  4. Pingback: How I blew my carb count yesterday :-( | Low Carb Diet Tips for Busy People

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