Happy, Healthy Meals for the Modern Endurance Athlete

Restaurant Chain: Noodles and Company
Meal: Penne Rose

From the company's website; "Spicy red pepper-flaked tomato cream and penne pasta tossed with white wine, mushroom, fresh spinach and roma tomato. Parmesan or feta cheese."

Once again, I would skip the cheese and order some grilled chicken instead. They now offer this meal as combo with a fresh salad and drink. Try it and I believe you'll not only like it, but you'll feel good about eating it.

This Boulder-based chain has some of the freshest ingredients in the fast food world. Not only do I like many of their meals, but they also serve a wide selection of healthy bottled drinks and waters that go beyond your usual soda machine

Grocery Chain: Whole Foods Market
Meal: Salad/Soup Bar

Most Whole Foods Markets have a tremendous salad bar with about every organic vegetable and salad you could ever imagine. Build your own perfect salad in about three minutes and take it to the express lane check out for a quick, healthy, easy meal.

I also love their fresh soups, if you want to go the soup and salad combo route. My personal favorite is the matzo ball chicken soup with a fresh roll from the bakery.

Word of warning: While it is easy to eat healthy from their giant salad bar, it is just as easy to overdo it. I especially recall my buddies from my freshman collage days who somehow still managed to put on that freshman fifteen, even though they only grazed at the cafeteria salad bar. And that's just it—avoid the temptation to create a salad pyramid of eggs, cheese, nuts and creamy salad dressing.

Now that you've heard some of my suggestions, what are your happy healthy fast food favorites? Add them to the comments section below or on our community discussion forum.


Roman Mica is a amateur Clydesdale triathlete who lives and races in Boulder, Colorado and has his own website; www.EverymanTri.com. He is also one of the founding members of www.raceAthlete.com. His first book is entitled My Training Begins Tomorrow: The Everyman's Guide to IRONFIT Swimming, Cycling & Running. He recently published a sequel, No, Seriously, My Training Begins Tomorrow.

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