Healthy Eating: 6 Quick and Dirty Tips for Travelers

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A few weeks ago, our CEO Brooke Roberts shared her travel tips with CaraGilman.com, and now we're sharing them with you! 

6 Quick and Dirty Tips for Traveling "Light"

Whether you’re traveling for work or for pleasure, it can be very easy to slip into unhealthy habits. Grabbing a bag of chips instead of baby carrots at the gas station on a road trip. Opting for another heavy craft beer when you’ve had your share. Lounging an extra three hours on the beach instead of joining the optional snorkeling excursion. Whatever it is, we make many choices when we travel that can leave us feeling energized and ready for more adventures…or a little lethargic and soft around the belly.

Here are some tips to keep the good times rolling while also making healthy eating choices you won’t regret when you’re traveling.

1. Plan Your Indulgences

When I travel to a new city or country, there’s always a restaurant, beer, pastry, or some other kind of delectable treat I’m excited to try. And so I make sure that’s part of my plan. I know when I’m going to enjoy those indulgences so I’m sure to make healthier choices for my other meals and snacks. It’s also worth mentioning that it’s often difficult to enjoy something wonderful when you’ve spent the day indulging in a lot of other treats. Plan your indulgences, put them on the schedule. And you’ll have a lot to look forward to when you’re sitting in hours of meetings or all day exploring.

2. Pre-pack and Portion Control Your Snacks

Since I always know when I’m going to indulge a little on every trip, I also pre-pack and portion control healthy snacks to take with me when I travel. Whether I’m stuck sitting on a delayed flight, racing to catch the last ferry, or my meetings are running late, I always have some all-natural snack bars or small snack-size bags of almonds and dried fruit (unsweetened) to satiate me between meals. This also prevents me from grabbing a bag of chips or a danish when I need a quick bite to eat.

3. Plan A Physical Activity Every Day

When I’m traveling for work, I always try to book a hotel that either has a gym or is in a location where taking a morning run is safe. Of course, I always try to do a nice cleansing yoga sequence in the morning to get the blood flowing and my brain ready to take on the day’s challenges. For vacations, in my experience, the best way to explore and experience a new place is to get out there an engage with it. Find a local walking tour or rent bikes to visit the local sites. Do you love yoga, rock climbing, pure barre, cross fit, etc? Look up a local studio or gym to pop into a class or session. If you enjoy running, look up a November Project meet up in your city and join the early morning fun. It doesn’t have to be crazy outside the box, but it that’s your thing, research what the best outdoor activities are in that area and try it out.Deep sea fishing? Never done that? Give it a whirl!

4. Work vs Vacation

Staying healthy when you travel is also a mindset thing. When we go on a trip, our minds are wired to think “I’m going on vacation! Whoohooo!” When in reality, you just have a two-day work conference in Boise. So when you go on vacation remember that it’s your time to have some indulgences and enjoy yourself. But when you’re traveling for work, remember that it’s work and even more important that you take care of your mind and body so you can be on your best game. No one wants to be the guy that’s sluggish/overstuff/hungover when you have important presentations to give and clients to meet. So just like you’d take care of yourself at home with balanced meals and some physical activity, make sure you prioritize this when you travel for work.

5. Fast Food May Be Your Friend

As much as it pains me to say this, some times going to a proper “sit down” restaurant may be more glutenous than grabbing something from a “fast food” place. Think about it. Most adult entrees with a side dish and an appetizer come in at about 1,500 calories. If you have a drink and share dessert with that, you’ve now surpassed 2,000 calories (the recommended daily allowance) with just one meal. Try to hit up a fast food place like Panera, Chipotle, or the new Urban Taproom for less dense meal options that are also easier on your bottom line.

6. Everything in Moderation, Including Moderation

But at the end of the day, remember that you only live once so remember that moderation is absolutely crucial when maintaining a healthy lifestyle. But maintaining a happy life might include a little over indulgence from time to time. So eat up, drink up, and life it up…on occasion.