TUPELO • In October 2016, Trish McCluney started a fitness journey. Her primary goal was to get healthy.
“I wasn’t overweight, but the weight I had on me wasn’t good weight,” she said. “I wasn’t eating right.”
McCluney began working out with a personal trainer, Chelsea Chapman, who has just recently opened a new gym in Tupelo, Mississippi Mecca.
“When you train, they teach you about nutrition and heathy eating,” said McCluney, 44. “Eating right is 75 percent of the journey. You can work out all day long, but you’re not going to get the results you want if you’re not feeding your body the correct foods.”
McCluney is so passionate about healthy eating that she’s added six Lean and Clean options to the menu at Neon Pig, a Tupelo restaurant she co-owns with Mitch McCamey and Seth Copeland.
“By owning a farm to butcher to table restaurant, I knew I could provide clean meals to the public,” she said. “We’ve had this restaurant for seven years and this is the first menu I’ve ever written.”
The six meals are a smoked bell pepper stuffed with chicken, spinach, feta and harissa sauce; the No Sleep Coma Turkey with ground turkey, farm veggies and sweet potatoes; the Trish Bowl, where you pick your protein and add vegetables, tomatoes, lettuces and harissa sauce; steamed shrimp with quinoa, vegetables and lemon slices; a simple salad with either smoked chicken or grilled shrimp over arugula, spinach and lettuce with cucumbers, tomatoes, a boiled egg and vinaigrette; and a smoked sweet potato stuffed with ground turkey, broccoli florets and topped with harissa sauce.
“The meals are a nutritionally balanced mix of lean protein, carbs and seasonal vegetables,” she said. “The only fat other than what’s in the food naturally is olive oil.”
Each dish has 4 ounces of protein, a half-cup of carbs and 1 cup of vegetables, and about 500 to 600 calories.
“Some people – men – need more protein, so they can add protein or vegetables or carbs to a dish to fit what they need,” she said. “This isn’t just for people who work out. It’s for anyone who wants a healthy option when they go out to eat.”
McCluney became a certified personal trainer in January and she has clients at both Mississippi Mecca and NMMC’s Wellness Center in Tupelo. She tells her clients the importance of eating lean and clean, but she also teaches them moderation.
“I have a cheat meal once a week and when I’m on vacation I cheat a little more,” she said, adding that her cheat meals are usually Mexican, pizza or pasta. “But then you have to have the discipline to get back on the horse. For me, it’s really easy to eat this way. Eating healthy can be tasty and yummy.”