Finding A #FoodLifeBalance

I’ve been food blogging for close to a year now. Crazy that it’s been that long! I was looking at my list of all the restaurants I’ve visited in the past 11 months, and I was shocked to see that I’ve been to over 100 restaurants/coffee shops/bars in Austin alone! In addition to that, there’s all the places I’ve visited while traveling to Italy, Spain, Denver, Chicago, Seattle, and Dallas.

That’s a lot of food to eat.

I’d like to open up a bit more about what I’m calling a “food/life balance.” That popular phrase “work/life balance” is discussed so much (for good reason!!), but I don’t hear a lot of people talk about a food/life balance.

To me, a food/life balance is being able to enjoy being a foodie and indulging in delicious food while also living a fit, healthy, happy life full of energy. That balance is found in indulging in great food, but not over-indulging. And it’s not an easy place to find! 

Food is more digitalized now than EVER! Restaurants and chefs are expected to have thriving IG feeds with drool-worthy pictures. #FoodPorn is one of the highest numbered hashtags, and everything ooey-gooey, fried, or colorful will do well on instagram. And most of us want to taste everything….

But we also don’t want to weight 8000 pounds.

The churro. co. in Austin, TX!

Food blogging is a super fun world, and I’m lucky to have been invited to several media tastings in the past few months. Plate after plate of (free) food is handed to me, and I get to eat as much or as little as I want.

Of course, I start by taking pictures of everything. But I always eat it, too! (Haha! Just wanted to clarify that…)  I wouldn’t want to post a picture on my instagram account of something that I didn’t actually taste first.

Cheese board, anyone? I ate at the @knottydeck last night (the Renaissance Hotel’s restaurant), and plate after plate of seasonal, locally sourced, perfectly prepared food was brought out….and I couldn’t help but think that hotel restaurants have been SERIOUSLY upping their game in the last couple of years! Hotel restaurants don’t typically show up on @eateraustin 38 lists or heat maps, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they start making more appearances soon…

All this to say…I haven’t necessarily found the “balance” just yet. I’m constantly setting goals for myself and trying to use moderation…and then sometimes I throw caution to the wind and just completely over-eat.

But maybe that’s why it’s called balance: you’re always trying to achieve and maintain it. You never simply arrive and ignore it forever.

And while I’m sure these things will evolve over time, here are a few of the tips that have helped me maintain a good food/life balance:

  1. I practice mindfulness in my workouts. This used to be with yoga, and recently it’s been at The Barre Code. When I workout with my mind as well as my body, I’m stronger to resist over eating when the time comes to say “nope, I’m full enough.”  I’m not sure I’d be able to enjoy food as much as I do without my Barre Code workouts! Barre has literally changed my life in the past 6 months or so that I’ve been doing it. I’ve never felt stronger, leaner, or more empowered. I plan on being a Barre Code client for life!
  2. I don’t ever finish a plate completely. I won’t ever scrape a plate clean, especially when I’m doing a big media tasting. There’s so much food to taste at these things, and I’ll often be the recipient of 5-10 plates of food! And that’s a huge blessing and I’m super thankful to the restaurants who allow me to taste their food! But I have to taste, not devour. If I’m out at a restaurant with Nate or a couple non-blogger fiends and I just buy one entree, I’ll typically cut it in half and bring the other half home for lunch the next day.
  3. I try to focus equally on the people, not just the food. The Austin Food Bloggers are an awesome group of people; I’ve made lots of new friends this year! When I’m doing a tasting with a friend or two, I try my best to focus on the conversation at the table and not just the food. When I’m paying attention to the people around me, I’m less likely to gorge on food; instead, I’ll be able to slow down and enjoy things a bit more.

That’s a start. I have a lot to learn, and I would so honored to hear any thoughts you have about this subject. Care to share?

Here’s to a great Wednesday, friends!




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6 years ago

I love this post because I think it’s definitely something all food bloggers struggle with.

Sometimes I have to stop and think to myself, ‘Am I eating this for the photo or am I actually hungry and want to feed myself?’ I find this helps me stay in touch with that food/life balance. It’s such a delicate balance.

It’s strange, sometimes I’ll come home from a media tasting hungry and make a small healthy snack for myself (plain oatmeal is my go-to) as I only tasted a few bites of the food, trying to be conscious of what I’m eating. It really is all about balance, indulging when you’re hungry, eating clean during ‘off-screen’ time and making sure exercise is a priority.

6 years ago

It’s so easy for me to plan out a HUGE list of restaurants I want to eat at when I travel. Jumping from restaurant to restaurant is fun and productive but I think eating/food is also about the environment, experience, and the people. It goes back to quality over quantity and making food an important part of your life but not your whole life. Thanks for the thoughtful post, Kelsey!

Rachel Zierzow
Rachel Zierzow
6 years ago

So important for people that travel a lot or that have a lot of business meals too! Being mindful is really the key. Thanks for posting!

terra @
6 years ago

As a person who loves food, when I travel, I try to eat at a lot of different places, but I usually only get a snack or two to share with my travel partner, or to devour myself if I’m alone. I used to try and find one great place to go and have a whole meal there, but I’ve become much more fond of spreading out my foot intake over the course of a day and snacking as I go.

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