McDiet Day 6: Breakfast In Bathurst And The Coffee Crisis

McDiet Day 6: Breakfast In Bathurst And The Coffee Crisis

For complicated reasons that will be fully explained here in a couple of weeks, I was in Bathurst, some 200 kilometres out of Sydney, first thing Saturday. Because it was early in the morning and I wasn’t near home or the office, I decided to get a coffee rather than an orange juice with my compulsory McDonald’s breakfast. This turned out to have unexpected consequences.

[related title=”The McDiet Challenge” tag=”mcdiet” items=”9″] I ordered my breakfast — a Bacon & Egg value meal with a black coffee — in the surprisingly crowded McDonald’s branch on the Great Western Highway. I grabbed it as soon as it was ready, then headed out front and took a photo of the coffee. I was in a hurry because I had to make sure I was back at the station in time for the service back to Sydney (Bathurst only has one Sydney Trains service a day). And so I was already a couple of blocks away when I took my first sip and realised I didn’t have a black coffee: I had a flat white.

That’s a potentially big difference when you’re counting every calorie, and at first I panicked quite badly. I didn’t have time to head back and ask for a replacement, I really needed a coffee, and I’d already drunk some of it. But this was going to throw my carefully-planned daily total out, I suspected. Was I going to have to cancel my fries with dinner, or do something really unpleasant like eat a Filet-o-Fish instead?

When I boarded my train and actually checked the calorie count, I realised I was over-reacting. The coffee was worth 165 calories — just 30 more than the orange juice I’ve been having most other days. With my daily totals well under my 2000 maximum target, this wasn’t going to be an earth-shattering mistake.

Despite full days of an all-Macca’s diet, I’d fallen victim to some of the same assumptions others had made and which I referred to on Day 1 of this experiment: that the only safe way through this menu was salad and water and everything else would turn me into Fat Bastard. McDonald’s coffee is decidedly average, but one flat white from there isn’t going to bloat me. Five a day might, but that won’t be happening.

That’s the second serving mistake I’ve encountered this week (the first: a crunchy rather than grilled salad on day 4, which cost me 100 calories). Neither has been an issue. I’m just glad that no-one’s accidentally sold me a full-fat Coke rather than a Coke Zero, though even that would only be a 100-calorie penalty with the small size I’ve been ordering. [clear]

What I Ate: Day 6

Here’s the day 6 menu, complete with calorie count (calorie-free drinks not included).

Food Calories
Breakfast: Bacon & Egg McMuffin 297
Hash Brown 153
Flat white 165
Lunch: Noodle Grilled Chicken Salad 255
Dinner: McSpicy 468
Small Fries 255
Total 1593

Why the repeat on the McSpicy, which I’ve already had this week? Again, I really craved something with a bit of a kick. It’s easier to stick to a diet if you’re looking forward to the food.

McDiet Day 6: Breakfast In Bathurst And The Coffee Crisis

One day to go! (Note: I’ll put Sunday’s Day 7 meal plan up on Sunday evening, rather than the next day as I’ve been doing so far, since Monday will be the big reveal: have I actually lost weight?)


    • Uh, he spends his days working. On many things at a time. One of them happens to include meal times for the week. What’s your problem?

  • Angus, your table has stuffed up at the top

    also. DO A FILLET O FISH!

    but, a serious question, for your big reveal, please let us know if you have been hungry at any time, costs of the week and all.

    • Fixing table now. The $25 a day cost I mentioned earlier in the week has been constant, and I’ve mentioned several times that I haven’t been hungry 🙂

  • If you are eating below maintainence you will have lost weight, what I want to know (and I couldnt find if you posted this already) is what you have worked out your TDEE to be.

    Is 2000 a number you had worked out based on your requirements or are you going by the ‘Average Adult Diet’ number that is advertised at McDonald, because I would imagine most men would burn more calories than that in a day.

    • 2000 was what happened in the US experiment I’m emulating. Translates to about 8300Kj. 8700 is a maintenance figure — you need to go below it to lose weight. I’m 186cm, so I suspect my maintenance figure is higher and I should lose weight on the 1700-odd calories a day I’m consuming (plus 45 minutes deliberate exercise a day). We’ll know tomorrow!

      • Thanks for the reply. Height doesn’t really directly affect calories burned, its more dependant on weight (which is partially determined by height). I weight 81kg (193cm tall) and I have worked out my maintenance is around 3000 calories, just for reference. I have lost about 10kgs since June by counting calories and I eat McDonald’s 4-7 days a week (sometimes for lunch and dinner) so I was surprised to see how much people associate eating any amount of McDonald’s with gaining weight.

        • I’ve found, through trial and error, that my maintenance is about 300 calories less than most sites calculate it should be. Even thought I exercise 30mins 3-4 times a week, and walk 5km or more every day, I still need to eat fewer calories than even the “little to no exercise” calculation for my height/weight. Which is to say, it’s dependent on individual factors more than height/weight. I think discovering your own maintenance (which changes dependent on your age, too) is valuable, though. Sounds like Angus’ maintenance calories are probably under 2000cal.

      • I predict you will lose only 700 grams or there about…
        don’t ask me how, but that’s the ‘feeling’ I get

  • I’m not surprised Bathurst McDonald’s stuffed up your order. I used to get coffee there before getting on the same train service back to Sydney and it was always disappointing. My tip is too always check your order before leaving any McDonalds, especially on drive through.

  • Just a nitpick, but Coke doesn’t have any fat, so technically Coke Zero is full fat 😉

  • If the Coffee had been over the Calories you could allow, couldn’t you have just not drunk all of it?

    • Yes — but I didn’t really have time to stop and check, and I badly needed caffeine 🙂

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