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Feeding the Beast

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Mike CohenFeeding the Beast
by on Oct 7, 2009 at 2:36:03 pm

Who knew sitting at a desk requires so much energy. But what kind of energy you use impacts the bottom line.
In other words, the food you eat impacts your waistline.

The past few weeks I've changed my diet. Instead of eating toast, a bagel or english muffin for breakfast, I eat a omelet with vegetables and cheese (the -let in omelet). Not that I needed to lose much weight, but protein and no carbs in the AM helps regulate blood sugar later in the day, impacts the waistline and provides a needed boost of energy to help you face your morning of work. This is especially important if you are out in the field on your feet. All a lot of donuts, muffins or bread in the morning will do is make you tired faster, and in the long run, fatter faster.

Well that's my opinion, it seems to be working.

I sauté some sliced mushrooms and yellow squash in olive oil and nonstick cooking spray. It took a while to wean myself off butter or butter substitute.

I used to wonder how anyone could go through a 36 pack of eggs from Costco unless they ran a diner. Well if you use 1 yolk for every 4 to 5 whites, you are staying healthier than having multiple whole eggs, and you use a lot of eggs. It is a lot cheaper than buying those cartons of egg whites mixed with chemicals. A good value is good for you!

Whisk the eggs, add to the cooked veg and you're off to the races.

So why have I done a post about food in a Business forum? Because staying healthy and energized makes you better at your job. That's the most important part of being in business - being able to do your job at peak performance to best serve your customers.

So with tasty breakfast in hand I can sit down for a relaxing half hour before getting in the car. I have two choices - watch Matt Lauer pretend to be a journalist, or switch on the TiVo and get inspired. Easy choice.

Thanks for eating.

Let's hear about how you feed the beast.

Mike Cohen

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Mark SuszkoRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 7, 2009 at 4:15:19 pm

My favorite is the "Astronaut breakfast", which is generally steak and eggs. I don't do that too often anymore though.:-) But because my daddy worked at Quaker Oats for a number of years, for a decade or so it was Quaker instant oatmeal with raisins and cinamon spice; the rasins are the quick, immediate energy burst, the oatmeal, a long-endurance energy source follow-up, and said to lower cholesterol. Bit tame, but fast and easy to do in the morning, awesome during cold months.

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Jason JenkinsRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 7, 2009 at 4:22:09 pm

Thanks for making me hungry all over again! For breakfast, I most often eat a bowl of oat groats (cooked in the rice cooker) with rice milk. On weekends it's whole wheat pancakes or waffles. A lot of carbs, but I love carbs. Homemade whole wheat bread, fresh from the oven, with butter and honey –it doesn't get any better than that. I grind our flour myself on a bicycle hooked to a grain mill.

Jason Jenkins

Flowmotion Media

Video production... with style!

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Mark SuszkoRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 7, 2009 at 7:32:35 pm

I disagree; it can get much better than that, though maybe not healthier.

Home-made blueberry pierogies, boiled, then lightly sauteed in butter/margarine and served with sugar and sour cream... is pure sex on a plate. I would eat that any time, any where.

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Alan LloydRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 8, 2009 at 11:35:11 am

I was very sad when Kalinowski's, on Milwaukee Avenue, closed some years ago. Their plum pierogi were truly carb nirvana.

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grinner hesterRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 8, 2009 at 3:02:20 am

I eat whatever the client is in the mood for.
Nature of the beast. I try to get my required 3 cheesburgers a week.
I figure I'll get on a health kick after I die.

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Jake WilliamsRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 8, 2009 at 4:17:27 pm

Apples, lots of coffee and either a grapefruit or an orange help me start the morning right. But those omelets sound tasty.

Jake Williams

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Richard KuennekeRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 9, 2009 at 5:24:27 pm

Thanks for the omelet recipe - Mike! I’m long overdue for that kind of change. What do you do for lunch?


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Mike CohenRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 9, 2009 at 5:47:41 pm

Since you asked, the rest of the day is supposed to follow a 4 hour schedule.

An alternative for breakfast is 6oz of Greek yogurt (plain or vanilla) with a banana and a half cup of bran flakes. In the winter I live on Bob's Red Mill hot cereal products - takes a bit longer to prepare but it is a comforting way to start the day and it makes your insides feel lovely.

Lunch 1 is a sandwich, light on the bread, heavy on the meat (turkey or ham) with cheese. It is important to get quality deli meat - lower in sodium and fat so you can eat more of it without blowing your diet.

Lunch 2 is either another sandwich, or some other protein such as tuna salad (I mean actual salad with tuna or shrimp). Honestly I usually just have one lunch around 1pm, that omelet keeps me going. Gotta try to have the elevensies and twosies this winter.

Then dinner is pick a protein - we keep frozen portions of sockeye salmon, tilapia, boneless chicken breasts and sirloin burgers - makes dinner easy, just look at the calendar. Have a hot veg with dinner - lately we have been enjoying locally grown spaghetti squash. Sirloin burger nights are sans bun + salad (lettuce, tomato, chickpeas, shredded carrot and a sprinkle of Feta cheese (salty but oh so good) and a few chopped walnuts).

If we fancy dessert, some sliced strawberries with a dollop of Greek yogurt is good. You should not eat bananas at night due to the high glycemic index.

So that's the rest of my current eating philosophy. Next week I have 4 nights in Chicago, so all bets are off. Breakfast buffet, crappy convention center lunch and splurge for dinner. But basic principles can be adhered to .


PS - Pierogies sound good Mark.

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Richard KuennekeRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 9, 2009 at 6:17:17 pm

And what about exercise? I'm considering a Kayak - Walrus size.


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Mike CohenRe: Feeding the Beast
by on Oct 9, 2009 at 9:08:22 pm

regarding exercise - walking is good. I was only on my mountain bike twice this past Summer, partially due to the bad weather. A good walk at a leisurely pace is the best thing. Keeping the body moving is more important than running for your life on a treadmill. In nice weather I walk around the parking lot or down to the corner and back.

A little trivia for you. The corner in question, known as Canfield Corner, has an old pharmacy with a disused soda fountain from the 50's. When she lived in town with her husband Arthur Miller, young Marilyn Monroe used to ride her bike to this spot for an ice cream soda.

Too bad she didn't stick around - that would get me on my bike too.

Mike Cohen

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Nick GriffinWine for the Beast, too
by on Oct 9, 2009 at 8:27:47 pm


If you're up for a little wine with dinner:
Bin 36, 339 N Dearborn -- a Nick pick for 4 star food and 5 star wines at 3 star prices. Try a "flight": four half glasses of wines from particular categories, ie. - four different Pinot Noirs, four different South American selections, four different Cabs, etc. The flights are accompanied by their tasting notes and room to add your own. One of their more amusing recent descriptions of a huge red was "This is the taste of purple."

I'm there at least once on every trip to Chicago. Diet and live well at home. Enjoy Chicago.

Bin 36 is second only to dinner in Paso Robles, CA with Ron & Kathlyn.

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Mike CohenRe: Wine for the Beast, too
by on Oct 9, 2009 at 9:02:35 pm

Love the wine tasting menus. Will try to get to Bin 36. Also have a planned dinner at Rosebud on Rush. Even those Corner Bakeries are good and convenient for breakfast or lunch.

Went to a similar type of place Il Sole in Dallas - appetizer, meat, fish, dessert - full glass with each - could barely walk afterwards but worth the headache and made up for the Anatole hotel's weirdness!

Ron - I think maybe we need a Food forum. What do you think?


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Alan LloydRe: Wine for the Beast, too
by on Oct 11, 2009 at 10:48:15 pm

If you like it, and can spare the time, get up to Argyle St. for pho.

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Mike CohenRe: Wine for the Beast, too
by on Oct 13, 2009 at 3:10:23 am

Sunday went to Rosebud on Rush - good Italian.

Monday busy 1st day of conference. Wall to wall people. If there is a recession, it seems to have stayed in the NY Times.

Had a chance to walk around the show a bit, in addition to helping make sure the video sessions went off without a hitch. I checked in with a few clients, made some new contacts, and checked out the current state of the HD imaging industry for healthcare. Sony is showing a new 3D HD system.

Most of the HD vendors are using a proprietary HD recording box - h.264 video all around. More about this in an upcoming blog post on the subject. Stay tuned.

Now back to our regularly scheduled program - eating!

Monday went to Spiaggia. Hidden upstairs in an office building with a lake view (in the day time) this fancy shmancy restaurant, also Italian, was really fancy and extra shmancy. For pasta I had gnocchi with a ricotta cream sauce and truffle. This restaurant is all about the truffle, not a bad thing. The meat was duck - don't know the preparation but it was good. A trio of gelati and decaf capuccino wrapped up the day. On adjacent tables were no less than 3 of the top surgeons in the business. If surgeons are filmmakers, then Scorsese, Steven Soderbergh and Michel Gondry were in the house. Scorsese asked me what to have for dessert. I hope he tried the banana gelati.

Tuesday is open, Wed on my own so Bin 36 is on the agenda. Hopefully I will be able to stumble back to the hotel without falling in the Chicago River!

Stay tuned for further reports. Same COW time. Same COW channel.

Mike Cohen

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