The month of March means March break travel, and if you’ve been sticking to your new year’s resolutions thus far with the idea of “summer body” in the back of your head, you probably want to avoid throwing all your hard work and progress out the window. Let me offer you a few tips and tricks to travel and stay on track without sacrificing the fun, care-free vacation vibes.
Being on the road doesn’t mean you have to eat out and all the chain restaurants that pop up on the side of the highway. The best thing to do is purchase a cooler that you can plug into the cigarette lighter outlet to keep food cool inside the whole trip. Pack things like sandwiches, fresh fruit, individual hummus packets, pre-cut vegetable sticks, Greek yogurt cups, pre-cooked chicken breasts etc. You can also pack some dry foods as well such as protein bars and whole grain crackers to keep you satisfied and away from fast food. It would be wise to take a case of water bottles to stay hydrated, stay away from pop and fruit juices which could lead to you having over-energized kids in the backseat. Packing your own is not only healthier, but way more cost-efficient. It’s a win-win!
Most people start their vacation diet in the airport, simply because food availability is seemingly slim. The Starbucks or Tim Horton’s restaurants don’t always have their full menu, and the convenience food is well, convenient! Since it’s hard to bring your own food with you through security the best advice I can give is eat a meal with protein at home before you get to the airport in order to know you’ve had a good meal and you are satisfied for the time being. Once you are through security and at the gates, you could always find a place that sells a salad with fresh grilled chicken you can bring on the plane with you or some healthy snacks to bring along! From my experience you can usually find some fruit here and there or some greek yogurt cups that wouldn’t be a bad choice! I also ALWAYS suggest grabbing yourself a massive water bottle for two reasons: having your own water you can say no to the complimentary pop and juice on the plane, and staying hydrated in the air helps to prevent feelings of jet-lag!
THE ALL-INCLUSIVE RESORT:
There is nothing better than showing up to your destination and having to plan or pay for nothing extra since it’s all already included! BUT, “free” food doesn’t mean you have to over-indulge. With the buffets or all-day snack bars, make sure you are listening to your body and understanding if you are truly hungry or eating because it’s social, emotional or simply because it’s there. If you aren’t quite sure how much to be consuming of one thing at a time, I always use the “eat by FIST” rule. One serving of anything should never be bigger than the size of your fist. Make sure to be eating adequate amounts of vegetables to ensure you are filling up on nutrient dense foods as well as incorporating some roughage to avoid that traveller’s constipation. Alcohol can be the biggest source of empty extra calories in someone’s day. One beverage can clock in anywhere from 150-300 calories, so if you are consuming up to six beverages a day you are adding in almost 900-2000 extra calories! If you are going to enjoy a few cocktails, always stick to the clearest alcohol you can find as it will be lowest in sugar, syrups and carbohydrates. Examples are vodka, white rum, gin, tequila etc. Speaking of beverages, again water will be your best friend especially if vacationing somewhere hot! Staying hydrated will not only keep you from experiencing head-aches, but will also keep you regular!
Lastly, but not least I’d like to touch on what everyone will probably be avoiding on their nice, relaxing vacation… EXERCISE! The extra calories and less healthy choices are inevitable, but if you could add in at least 1- minutes of intentional exercise a day, your body will LOVE YOU! This could be swimming, walking on the beach, hitting the hotel gym, hiking etc.
Happy Travels to all you vacationers!