Staying on your nutrition plan is hard, if you don’t have a gameplan. Like most things we talk about, it isn’t as difficult to do as most people think as long as you know a few pro tips: plan ahead, prioritize protein, bring snacks, and hydrate. What plan of attack will be best for you? Only you will know that, but we will arm you with all the info you need to succeed.
PLAN AHEAD IF YOU’RE WANTING TO STAY ON TRACK
- Research restaurants and their menus that will be near you. This is just as important when traveling as it is when you’re not. You know the saying… fail to plan, plan to fail.
- Most menus you can find online, and most of them have the nutrition values available. Sometimes via pdf that saves to your phone.
- Keep it simple. You’re on vacation, but that doesn’t mean you have to re-invent the wheel… Most things from anywhere are either already in My Fitness Pal, or there are similar items in the app. My rule of thumb is to always add in 1.25 servings of whatever I’m ordering if I want to be accurate. Most restaurants over serve. OR I choose the item that’s been entered in MFP with the highest number of total calories.
- Make sure the room you’re staying in has a fridge at the very least… if it has a microwave, that’s a bonus, but lots of hotels and resorts have a shared microwave in common areas.
- There are two options when it comes to planning your meals while traveling: cook some things and pack it with you or buy stuff when you get to your destination. The method you go with depends on how much food you want to carry with you when traveling.
- If you plan to cook some stuff ahead of time, make sure you have a cooler bag that’s big enough for all of your meals. If you’re flying, make sure you don’t pack any big condiment bottles in your cooler bag, TSA will take those away. Buy small bottles or swipe some condiment packets when you land.
- If you are planning to buy items when you get to your destination, make sure to get things that are easy to heat and eat or just rip open and smash: instant rice pouches, tuna pouches, pre-made salad kits, rotisserie chicken, fresh veggie steamer bags, hell even canned veggies work in a pinch, don’t sleep on fruit cups either! They have in own juice versions of everything to avoid the added sugar!
- Depending on how long your trip is, you can either go to a grocery store or to Sams/Costco. Try to avoid hotel and resort markets as much as you can, because they are pricey as fuck.
- Don’t be afraid to try some local staples. If you’re traveling out of region or country, and you find something that catches your eye – try it. You’re there to get the local experience, right?
- Also, don’t forget that most destinations have delivery services as well. That’s what we did on the last trip I took
- For a treat, you can always order a protein off of the menu to-go and take it upstairs to your room to add your own side dishes. That way you can have the best of both worlds: you got to order out but you also didn’t wreck your nutrition for the day.
PRIORITIZE PROTEIN AT EACH MEAL
- We’ve mentioned the importance of protein many many times, especially in episode 29. But TL:DR – Protein should be the centerpiece of each meal to keep you fuller longer and to feed your muscles. And especially, while on vacation, to make sure that you’re getting enough protein, period.
- Make sure you’re getting at least one fist-sized serving of protein per meal, then fill that plate up with lots of veggies and some carbs.
- Deli meat is a hotel room staple for us. Sammiches are always a great option for a quick meal or snack, put it in a tortilla and make a wrap, or cut it up and eat it lunchable-style on some crackers.
- It’s also never a bad idea to make sure you pack protein powder, it can be a quick breakfast with a banana, or a snack between meals if you are starting to get hungry. If you pack it for air travel, double baggie it, and put it in your checked luggage if you can. I wouldn’t carry on any powders in general if you can avoid it (ie: pre-workout, protein, etc.) TSA doesn’t like that shit.
- The one thing about vacation is that you’re there to enjoy yourself. By keeping protein at the forefront of each meal or snack, you’ll ensure that you’re still getting the amount of protein you need, or at least close
- the point is to have fun, but if you’re wanting to stay on track (personally for me, I’ve been doing this so long that it provides me some control while I’m away LOL) I’ve found that I still enjoy myself but come home feeling much better when I do all of the things we’ve talked about so far in this episode
- Don’t get sucked into the temptation that is the hotel snack machine. Either pack or pick up plenty of snacks to fight off hanger between meals, make sure you always have a snack or five in your bag when you’re out and about for the day. Snacks save lives.
- When it comes to snacks, make sure you cover all your bases; sweet, salty, fruity, and most important – easy.
- bananas, apples, grapes, oranges are all easy grab and go options
- protein or granola bars
- fruit leather
- rice cakes
- trail mix
- tuna packs
- Travel is hard on the body… depending on how far you’re going, it can throw all sorts of things out of whack, so make sure you’re properly hydrated. This is especially important if you’re flying, nobody wants to pee on the airplane seven times, but it’s easy to get dehydrated when you sit on planes all day… so grab that complimentary bottle of water.
- Pack your emotional support water bottle for your trip. Take it everywhere and refill it often. We’ve mentioned before, but if you’re curious: women need about 3 liters of water a day, men need about 4.
- Make sure you have plenty of liquids in your room, grab some extra water, juice, tea, whatever you like to drink, gatorade or some kind of sports drink especially if you’re going to a warm place
With a little planning, staying on track while traveling isn’t so bad. And remember, you ARE on vacation, so don’t forget to enjoy a treat every now and then.