In a world filled with deadlines, appointments and expectations, we could all use a vacation from time to time. Whether you road trip to a national park or jet set to the beach, proper restoration is a crucial component of a healthy lifestyle. Travel allows us to escape the monotony of the daily grind and can increase mindfulness and creativity as we explore new cities.
As you create your itinerary, you might find yourself dreaming of poolside frozen daiquiris, pasta dinners with bottles of red wine, and desserts that promise to satisfy your sweet tooth. But you’d be remiss if you were to leave out the nasty sugar hangover or post-Merlot head fog that accompany these treats. Whether you’re traveling for work or recreation, it is possible to maintain stay healthy and return home feeling like you torched calories rather than the midnight oil. Soak up these tips along with the warm weather and lift more than that poolside drink!
1. Plan Ahead
Before you arrive at your destination, make sure you’re prepared to eat healthy. Set yourself up for success. Research where you’ll be staying and find out what the local dining options are. Which restaurants offer the healthiest options? Is there a nearby grocery store where you can stock up on snacks and foods to keep in your hotel fridge?
2. Be Prepared
Regardless of how you travel, remember to pack snacks. Not only is it more affordable to pack your own food, but you will be less likely to spend money on cheeseburgers and bottles of pop when you have options such as Quest Nutrition bars, dry roasted edamame and jerky.
3. Avoid Getting Hungry
Eat healthy snacks throughout the day to avoid going to meals hungry. You will be able to use better judgement when you are not starving. If you arrive to dinner with an empty, grumbling stomach, you will potentially end up eating more. Here are some tips that will help you make smart choices at meal times.
• Limit the amount of liquid calories you consume. Ask for water, unsweet tea or other drinks without added sugars.
• Start your meal with a salad packed with veggies. This will help control your hunger, improve satiety and reduces the chance you’ll dive into the bread basket.
• Request that your dressing be served on the side. Use sparingly.
• Order steamed, grilled or boiled dishes instead of those that are fried or creamy.
• Order items from the menu rather than purchasing a buffet.
• Order an appetizer or multiple side dishes as an entree to ensure portion control.
4. Enjoy Yourself
While on vacation, you have the chance to experience new foods and a variety of options! Keep in mind that “all inclusive” is not a green light to have a free for all. Moderation is key. Rather than deprive yourself of something that is “too sweet” or indulgent, have a little bit of everything and enjoy the experience.
When it’s time to bag your bags and head home, take the time to recall your favorite moments of the trip. Be proud of yourself for prioritizing your health and making the commitment to continually improve the quality of your life.