We have all been there, plugging on religiously with our meal planning, sticking to workouts- all until we have a trip planned. Whether it's for work or pleasure, we all find ourselves making our way through the long security line and shuffling to the gate to dash off to some exciting destination, and sometimes, we were so busy packing our suitcase we plan our snacks. As fun as travel can be, sometimes the easiest options to grab are not always the healthiest.
I have done a lot more traveling in the last few years, and coincidentally, my health has become an even greater priority, so how do you make healthy choices when you’re on the go? Here are some ways I manage to make sure I feel great, have energy while traveling, and can still stick to my goals during travel.
Since I always keep healthy food in the house, it’s not a big leap for me to grab smart choices when I’m leaving the house. If I have a lot of time I will bake some muffins ahead of time or make some nut and seed bars. If I am short on time, I make sure to grab a couple of pieces of fruit that travel well like apples and bananas, and make my own trail mix. The possibilities here are endless, you can throw together any combination of nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and even some dark chocolate chips if you need a bit of sweetness. I have even been known to carry a mason jar salad onto a plane, but you don't need to get that crazy if you don't want.
Some great store-bought bars I love are KIND and GoMacro bars, both have no artificial ingredients and are high in protein and healthy fat without a lot of added sugar. Having healthier options in your bag will make it so much easier to walk right past that cinnamon roll in the food court or avoid unhealthy snacks on the plane.
So often we mistake thirst for hunger, and this can happen even more when we’re traveling and scattered. I always pack a large water bottle in my carry-on luggage and take it half full on my way to the airport. I make it a priority to finish the water before we get to the airport so I start my trip hydrated and then fill up the water bottle as soon as we get through security. You can carry this onto the plane and this way you’re in control of your hydration, not waiting for the flight attendants to bring you a tiny cup of water : )
Avoid drinking alcohol on the flight which will only contribute to dehydration leaving your skin feeling icky and you more likely to overeat. Feel free to grab a free bevvie on the plane, just stay away from juices and soda, stick to sparkling water, coffee or tea. Extra bonus - you'll arrive at your destination feeling and looking refreshed.
Move, move and move some more.
Sitting on long flights can leave you feeling sore and sleepy and can zap your daily move goals. If I have time, I always squeeze in a quick run or yoga session before a flight. Moving my body before travel makes me feel more balanced, less stressed, and excited for my trip.
I always get to the airport early enough that I can get through security and do a few laps through the terminal before getting on the plane. Since I know I'll be sitting for a few hours, I always try to stand in the boarding area as well.
If you’re on an especially long flight, try to get up eat least once an hour to stretch your legs and move a little bit.
Know your stuff
If you absolutely can’t bring your own snacks and have to eat airport food, do your research and be smart about your choices. Read the menu, look for things that are at least half vegetables, and skip the added bread or chips that come on the side. Don’t be afraid to ask for things modified, restaurants are often very willing to be accommodating if you check.
Make sure to watch portion sizes as well, often the size that you get is more than one serving, so try wrapping up half for later and eating half right away. This can also be super helpful after a long flight when you land and feel ravenous and keep you from grabbing something else unhealthy before you get to your destination.
Some of my favorite grabs at the airport include:
Egg White Bites or Plain/Blueberry Oatmeal
Trail Mix or Dried Fruit
Burrito Bowl - lean more on greens here and salsa
Do you have any big trips planned? Any tips for how you stay on track? Let us know how you manage travel and your healthy goals!