Mar 30, 2012 • By

Lessons from a restaurant road trip

From Minneapolis and Chicago to St. Louis and Kansas City, Andy Schumeister and I recently traveled across the Midwest on a Healthy Restaurant Roadtrip and shared our experience with fans of EatBetterAmerica. (Andy blogged for “A Taste of General Mills” during the trip, here.)

From Chef Mike Rakun’s amazing sea bass at Mill Valley Kitchen to the unique customization options at Freshii to the eco-friendly vibe at Green Bean Salads, we discovered a wide range of restaurants focused on providing better for you and mouthwatering food.

Here’s our video interview with Rakun, at our first stop in Minneapolis.

We also interviewed Scott Frankel, the owner and operator of Freshii, in Chicago.

We’ve been back in the office for a few days now, and I’ve had some time to reflect on the trip. I learned a lot from this experience, and not just about healthy eating. I even picked up some important life lessons along the way.

Things like:

Start early

You can never start too early. Our road trip was in the works since September, and I’m so glad we started early! It gave us enough time to produce much of the content for web pages, recipe collections, articles and more.

Be prepared

Whether we’re talking about having the right snacks on hand or the right video equipment for a shoot, a little foresight and preplanning makes life run so much more smoothly.

It starts with passion

From the visionary restaurant owners to our site’s amazing staff to Brandon, our talented videographer, passion was one crucial element of the road trip. People can tell the difference if something is the result of a labor of love.

If at first you don’t succeed …

We heard several “no’s” during the planning of the EatBetterAmerica Roadtrip, and I’m so glad we didn’t let them stand in the way. Perseverance helped the trip come to fruition – sometimes you have to just keep going!

Forgive quickly

Mistakes happen. Whether you ate something you regretted or made an oversight on a project, learn from the mistakes, forgive yourself and others quickly, and move on.

Have fun along the way

Every step of the road trip was a blast to work on. From the first brainstorm session with my team to the last video shoot on the road, we had a ton of fun and lots of laughs. Don’t take things too seriously – remember to enjoy the journey!

To learn more about the EatBetterAmerica Roadtrip, be sure to check out our videos, recipe collections, blog posts and more.