How to be Healthy while Traveling

Hi friends, it is the first official day of Spring! I can’t believe the first quarter of the year is coming to an end soon but I CAN believe that it’s almost time for Steve and I to go to Belgium!! We are so excited for this trip! We have never been abroad together and Steve has never been to Europe. Make sure you follow me on Instagram cause you can bet my stories will be flooded with photos from our adventure! Oh, and if you want to know what I’m packing then stay tuned! That post will be here in a few days 😉

In the spirit of traveling, I get asked a lot by my clients how to be make healthy choices on vacation. If you’re someone who is a “diet” this can present a challenge because to be “on” a diet means you can “fall off” a diet. My first suggestion is that you revisit your thoughts on the word diet, could you think of what you’re doing as a way of life? A healthy outlook? This way, when you’re going on your vacation you’ll be able to focus on the adventure and not the number of calories you’re eating.

BUT I totally understand the desire to want to make travel a bit healthier and I’m all for it! Here are some different ideas to make traveling work for your and your goals. For more ideas, try these roasted ranch chick peas, or any of these snacks that some RDs sent each other in a snack exchange.

Travel Day (planes, trains, Automobiles)

  • Bring snacks that will keep you full, satisfy you, and are easy to pack.
    • Fruits – grapes, apples, bananas [do not put in the bottom of your bag!], & clementines pack well.
    • Veggies – carrots, bell peppers sliced, sugar snap peas, sliced zucchini, celery, jicama, or cucumbers pack well.
    • Pre-packed nut butters like Justin’s brand or individual serving containers
    • Hummus – again you can get pre-packaged or fill your own little containers
    • Trail mix – it’s cheaper to buy a big bag and separate it into portions
    • Pretzels – again, cheaper to buy a big bag and separate it out
    • Granola bars
  • Emergen-C – yes, it’s an excess amount of vitamins and you’re not going to absorb everything but I won’t travel without them because airports, trains, and cars for that matter are full of germs.
  • If you’re driving/taking a road trip look into a tiny fridge or cooler that plugs into your call to keep some pre-packed sandwiches, yogurts, cheese, etc.
  • Packets of oatmeal – grab a hot cup of water from a coffee store (they might charge you for a tea, etc) and dump in your oatmeal instead of the tea especially if it’s a cinnamon tea!
  • Water bottle + any flavorings if you’re someone who will typically want something more fun than plain water on a trip
  • Hand sanitizer – again, germs.
  • Tea – I also travel with 1-3 of my favorite brand of tea called Throat Coat. I don’t want to plan on getting sick but if I get a sore throat then this tea is my go-to.

At your destination

  • Look for a nearby grocery store so you can purchase some basics or plan to cook a meal or two.
  • See if you can stay somewhere with a small kitchenette – Steve and I notoriously use Air BnB and make sure we have a little kitchen to prepare some meals.
  • Look for a local farmers market – when we went to Hawaii this was a fantastic way to try new local foods/produce
  • Check if your hotel/Air Bnb has a gym or a local walking path. If you’re going to a resort, there might even be free fitness classes
  • Take advantage of free breakfast! I love when hotel’s have continental breakfast offered. Take a look and find a filling, balanced breakfast. Most hotels will have oatmeal, milk, bananas, and sometimes small containers of peanut butter. It’s very possible I snag a couple of those little mini peanut butter containers when I travel… 😉
  • Continue your movement – it doesn’t mean you have to exercise but do consider at least adding some stretching to your day. After traveling or sleeping in a foreign bed, you might feel stiff and you do not want a sore body for all the adventuring you’re going to do.
  • Tune out from social media and allow yourself to unplug from reading any work emails too.

Eating out

  • Try looking at menus in a new way. Focus on what your body wants – does it sound good because we’re looking for the biggest bang for our buck? Or are we looking for what sounds great and makes us feel great too?
  • Don’t skip calories/meals. Instead of not eating all day, continue having mindful balanced meals. These will keep you fueled and keep your hunger balanced. This will also help prevent from bingeing later on.
  • Fiber, fiber, fiber – it is very common to get thrown off from your normal bathroom routine when traveling. Typically my first goal when I travel is to stay well hydrated with water and have fiber with each snack/meal.
  • Remember that if you choose to indulge then INDULGE and enjoy. There is nothing wrong with having an extra indulgence because you’re on vacation. Don’t bring shame on your vacation with you.
  • If you’re going to a buffet / conference with tons of food options, think about balancing your plate. Observe what all of the options are first, then think about filling it up with vegetables, fruits, a grain, lean protein and hey maybe some dairy too.
  • Research your restaurants! I know some clients who feel best when they look at the restaurants menu ahead of time so they don’t feel rushed into make a decision when they go out.

I hope that was helpful! When Steve and I travel, we often take road trips. We really enjoy this time in the car together and we’ll also bring things to keep it fun. We’ll make new CDs of music, bring mad libs games, and sometimes comedy audio books too.

What do you do when you’re traveling to stay healthy? Are you going anywhere this Spring Break or this Summer? Share below!

Share your thoughts!