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Entries in campus improv eats (15)

Campus Improv Eats - Bewick For Dinner

This evening Nick Bewick sent me a picture of his post-4:30 pm-workout meal: the classic spaghetti and meatballs.

Here's the breakdown:

  • Protein: Meatballs. Balls of meat. Four fantastically round, gooed together, probably spicy, meat chunks.
  • Carbohydrate: The noodles. Pasta sauce.
  • Fat: I think the label he sent me said there was some fat in the sauce.

Win or loss: Loss. Look, I'm Italian and I absolutely love any and all forms of pasta. Olive Garden is glorious, and white bread is best used for spaghetti sandwiches. Unfortunately, noodles (even the "healthy" kind) are very dense in carbohydrate, making it very hard to balance out. I understand it can get tricky, because if you balled up the noodles, they'd probably cover asmuch area as the meatballs, and it would be easy to think you're even up on protein and carbohydrate. But in reality, for the picture above, there is about thiiiiiiisss much protein and thiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiissssssssss much carbohydrate. Change the noodles to broccoli and the carbohydrate content would probably be so low you would need to add more. And yes, this is post-workout, but I still prefer to use common sense; you can never go wrong with finding balance.

Next time. Two option here (assuming the spaghetti has to be eaten): my first preference is to count this as a cheat meal and just load up as much pasta on your plate as you can until you start growing spaghetti hair like those Play-Doh things. In other words, count your losses, enjoy the spaghetti, and just get back on track with the next meal. Number two would be to just cut the noodles not quite in half, but close to it, keep the same meet content, and add some nuts with the balls of meat (lol) to compensate for the noodles not holding you over for long. It's important to remember that you can still find balance in classic meals like hot dogs, hamburgers, pizza, and spaghetti if you really want to.

Campus Improv Eats - Baby Josh 7/20

Mrs. Bennis is one of the most frequend food-photo-senders in the gym, along with Alyssa Jabara. Earlier this week, Mrs. Bennis sent not her own meal, but Josh's. Here's what it looked like:

Here's the breakdown

  • Protein: Cheese stick and some kind of sausage link
  • Carbohydrate: Apple
  • Fat: Peanut butter

Win or loss. This one is a win for sure. And this brings us back to one of Coach Glassman's early famous quotes, "the needs of the elderly and the professional athletes vary by degree, not kind." He was talking about the fitness needs and workout program, but the same can be said for nutrition. I never noticed it until listening to a few recent interviews, but the idea behind the "Kids Menu" at restaurants is really stupid. Common sense would tell you that if parents are ordering salad or salmon, or chicken, or steak, the Kids Menu should be the same thing, just scaled in portion. But instead, it's hot dogs, mac & cheese, spaghetti, and hamburgers. Josh is 8 years old and never stops moving. Ever. This is probably a perfect lunch for him in terms of quantity; 2 blocks of protein and carbohydrate, and around double the fat. Maybe a tad bit more of everything, but probably not.

Next time. Now that we have the quantity down, let's see if we can work on food quality. Best place to start is with the fat - if possible, use real peanuts instead of peanut butter.

Campus Improv Eats - Maddy

So now that the kids are away from school, we get the opportunity to see what some of gthe food choices are like at home. I had a conversation with Maddy Wesner this morning after her workout and we dug into the nutrition side of things, and how she needs to keep balance. Here's the meal she had when she got home:

Here's the breakdown:

  • Protein - 1 cheese stick
  • Carbohydrate - grapes and strawberries
  • Fat - peanut butter

The verdict. Win. Yes the peanut butter is probably Jif. The cheesesticks came from a cow that was probably not grassfed and sprinkled with Tibetan holy water. And she might be a tad low on the protein. But this is a great start towards balance. In the camp of quality vs. quantity, I would love to have both. If I had to pick one for someone to start with, it would be quantity because of 1) it can be applied more realistically to situations kids will see such as lunch room, restaurant, friend's house, etc. and 2) it starts to build the habit of categorizing food.

Next time. Add one more cheese stick and you should be golden. Maybe a few extra grapes or strawberries too.

Campus Improv Eats: Fecht 1/29

This picture was sent in from Matt last week with the message, "I think I beat Binno's plate for breakfast." In terms of sheer stupidity, Binno's is impossible to beat. But if Matt was being serious about having a better balanced meal than Binno's, I would say he managed.

"The needs of the Olympic athlete and our grandparents differ by degree, not kind." - Coach Glassman.

The cool thing about humans is we are all the same. Excluding birth defects, we share the same bones, joints, organs, muscles, and digits. Therefore our needs all fall under the same general categories. The minor differences between us account for slight degrees of variations in those practices. For example, my lungs do the same thing that Mr. Carey's lungs do. The exact conditioning my lungs have gone through is slightly different than Mr. Carey's, and therefore the degree at which our lungs do their thing with oxygen is slightly different. Mr. Carey's liver does not inhale oxygen, as far as I know. Sabal? Can you check this for me?

For nutrition it's the same thing. Protein does the same thing for my grandma as it does for Matt Fecht. Same with carbs and fat. My grandma probably walks 18 steps every day. Matt probably runs 18 miles every day. The degree at which they need those macronutrients is different, but not totally exempt. So here's the breakdown for Matt's meal:

  • Protein: egg whites, cheese
  • Carbohydrate: carrots, broccoli, green beans, mushrooms, mango, strawberry, pineapple
  • Fat: none

While there are a lot of carbohydrate sources listed, most of them are coming from veggies, which can be loaded up on almost endlessly. The fruit takes the carbohydrate up a bit to probably a good amount for him, but it also tips things out of balance a bit on the protein side. Even with the added cheese, taking out the yolks from the eggs reduces the protein and fat, so he might be low there.

Win or loss? I give this a win even though he's off balance. The food sources are good, clean, and moderately close to being balanced.

Next time. Have some fat, and keep the yolks or add more eggs. Matt's best balance might be with slightly more carbohydrate than normal, but I think he should experiment a bit by adding more fat.

Campus Improv Eats Are Proof That Binno is Doomed to Serve In Hell

Editor's note: this was originally posted on January 15 at 4:28 pm. I am bumping it so you can all make fun of Binno in public without the comments being disabled.

I was raised a Catholic by good parents. Chris Binno was too. I went to St. Dennis, he went to G.A., and we both went to Foley at the same time, although I had no clue he existed until after I graduated. So we both went through the sacraments in grade school, and sat through Mr. Maiuri's awesome guitar sessions in religion class, and Mrs. Mulawka's Morality homework.

The first of the 7 deadly sins is gluttony, which The Bible defines as "the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, and slumber will clothe them with rags" (Proverbs 23:21). I, of course, have no freaking idea what this means. But the gist of what most churchfolk understand about gluttony is basically don't eat like a pig. If pigs ate like Chris Binno did for breakfast on Thursday morning, they would be manatees.

Let's start it off like this: when I get an email from the Great Bam Binno with the first sentence saying,

"So I normally eat about 12 eggs over medium for breakfast along with a bunch of fruit" 

I immediately think of Gaston from Beauty and the Beast. Then the more I thought about it, the more I see the similarities; constant flexing, broad chin structure, chasing women around, and constantly allowing himself to be trolled by a big hairy creature (Jacob, in Binno's case). Then I think that Binno might have the most tags on the website as it is, so what's the point of making a Binno is Gaston tag? Finally, that number 12 jumps out to me. I eat 3 eggs every morning for breakfast and I am still bombarded with the "eggs are bad for you" comments from people who haven't found out yet that cholesterol pretty much has been proven to have nothing to do with cancer. Still, common sense would tell me that 84 eggs in a week can't be great for you.

Binno must have thought this too, in fact, because as his email went on, he decided he was only in the mood for 8 eggs instead. So he placed his order:

You may notice that, in true Katie Bromm style, Binno opts to go by Christopher when he's around people he sees as inferiors. This turned out to backfire on him, as the waitress and cook both mistook his order for 18 eggs. And out came this:

It should be noted that he finished the entire meal, along with three bowls of grapes. Welp, here's the breakdown.

  • Protein: Every atom in the atmosphere contained on his plate
  • Carbohydrate: roughly 8 blocks? Depends on the bowl
  • Fat: Is saturated fat good for you now? I think it might be? Depends on the day? But no nuts and seeds here.

Win or loss. Loss. This is just... Jesus 18 eggs! And you weren't done yet? You could feed the entire Banet family for a week on this meal, alone. For shame, doc!

Next time. Go to the priest and he'll tell you to say 6 Hail Mary's to repent. Or talk to the football coach from the previous Campus Improv Eats and he'll probably give you a job as the team's nutritionist.

Campus Improv Eats Cannot Possibly Get Better

So in recent editions of Campus Improv Eats we've dissected food choices from Sabal, Shaka, and Alyssa Jabara. We've also seen Conor's lunchroom exploits and Binno's breakfast. But what I have to share with you folks today will trump anything we have seen.

I have been fortunate enough to get a first-hand look into most of the high schools in the area. I get to meet their coaches and see what practices these programs follow, good and bad from Detroit Central to Stoney Creek, and most schools in between. And when I arrive, the first thing I usually look for (besides the basketball court) is the weight room. The weight room tells a lot about a program, not only with the equipment and layout, but with the slogans and such. There's the classic "IRON SHAPRENS IRON" spraypainted on walls, or "Will to Win" on posters. But what I saw the other day at School Who Must Not Be Named had me more confused than the first time I saw the alphabet appear in a math problem:

First off, it goes without saying that this could only happen in football; basketball, softball, and even wraastling coaches just aren't capable of that kind of prehistoric thought. Secondly, I am a huge peanut butter fan; peanut butter on toast, celery, in oatmeal, and just plain on a spoon. So I see the Peanut Butter Club headline and think Hey that sounds enjoyable, but of course the bottom portion caught my attention. So I asked an adult what exactly this was all about and my attention was directed to another poster in the weight room:

Every 5 Counts turned out to be a reference to the kids in the Peanut Butter Club. Their assignment is to eat one peanut butter sandwich between every class. No jelly, of course. Tallied up, that equates to, you guessed it, 5(!) peanut butter sandwiches on white bread over the course of a single school day. So, for the sake of tradition, here's the breakdown:

  • Protein: Pat Sherwood said legumes count as protein for 3rd-world countries
  • Carbohydrate: 10 slices of diabeetus
  • Fat: peanut butter in absurd quantities

So there is a day's worth of carbohydrate blocks crammed into the mouths of poor school children over the course of about 5 hours. That equates to 180 grams of carbs, none of which coming from fruits or veggies. And I have no idea how much peanut butter they are using, but I can only assume it's a lot because football. Everything I have heard about protein tells me that when it comes in fibrous sources, it does not get absorbed into the body well, which is why peanuts and beans do not necessarily count for protein. The imbalance shown in this methodology is just fascinating.

Win or loss. Just for sheer volume of stupidity, and for this being the craziest thing I have seen in a weight room, I give this a win. Would I recommend this to anyone? Only as a way to one-up the Baconator Diane Challenge I did from Summer 2010 in the Old Weight Room.

Next time. Let them have some jelly so at least they will be able to open their mouths to answer questions in class without peanut butter slurring their speech. I mean, yeah it adds to the carbohydrate total, but at this point your pancreas is probably so confused anyways, what's an extra carb block or 10.

Football coaches are just a different species, man. I will never get it.

Campus Improv Eats - Sabal 12/26

The Champions Club has been missing a certain Hot Doctor since Summer ended, even though he has made sporadic appearances through the school year. But rumor on the street is he's coming back around pretty soon. We'll see if that comes to life, and in the meantime, he sent a meal picture to be analyzed.

Here's the breakdown:


  • Protein: pork tenderloin on the sandwich (he ate the first half before taking the picture), 2 slices of cheese, little bit of cheese on salad
  • Carbohydrate: bread, tomatoes on sandwich, sweet potato slices, salad, croutons
  • Fat: tiny bit of dressing on salad


On first glance this seems a bit off-balance, and the problem area comes from two sources of unfavorable carbohydrate. There's a good amount of protein, but the bread is going to be 4 blocks of carbs, and then sweet potatoes are probably another 2 or 3 blocks. When selecting carbohydrate sources it's important to keep that idea in your head of what is dense and what is not. Simply put, sugar, grains, and starches are all very densly packed with carbohydrate, which makes it easy to throw off the balance of your meal. When eating veggies and fruits, you can load up those bad boys and find yourself satisfied for hours after.

Secondly, this is a personal preference but when I have an unfavorable carbohydrate with a meal I like to add in extra fat to help hold me over. Fat does not throw off the hormonal balance in the same way that protein and carbohydrate can, so I like to experiment with fat before tinkering with protein and carbs.

Win or loss: I count this as a loss. The combination of having two unfavorable carbohydrate (3 if you count croutons) sources as well as barely any fat.

Next time: Lose the sweet potatoes and fill the rest of the plate with as much salad as possible. The croutons will fill any remaining carbohydrate, and maybe even a tiny bit of protein with the cheese. Then add a tad bit more dressing. Not the cleanest sources of food, but pretty balanced. Another option could just be to lose the bread and mix the the pork with the sweet potatoes. Never tried it but sounds delicious.