Sometimes you just need healthy snacks on the go. Traveling during the vacations can make it even more challenging to have healthy choices on hand while in the car, airport or the hotel. In this blog Get 5 quick tips for stay on track. Plus a bonus handout of a Health Coach’s Top 15 snack ideas.
We just got back from 10 days of travel where we road tripped to Disney World and back again. The trip was magnificent and already I am wanting to go back. This girl just can’t get enough of the Disney Magic. However, the eating out and expensive meals get old really fast. I especially hate it when I am almost 3 years into my personal health journey and don’t want to derail all the work I’ve accomplished for my health. I knew I needed healthy snacks on the go and tips to get through the week.
The good news is that there are ways to work Healthy travel snacks and eating into the trip. Here are a few of the things that I have learned.
1. Plan Ahead
You have heard this before. You knew this was coming because it is so true! It makes a difference. This is the easiest way to
make sure you have some good choices. You have to plan ahead to make following your way of eating (WOE) something you can do when your on the road.
My favorite way is to bring your own. Yep, I prep my healthy travel snacks at the very least. I will precut the family some veggies, pack some fruit, grab some hard boiled eggs, or bag up some raw nuts/ seeds. All of which can be easily stored in one of kids lunch kits. There are many easy snacks quickly grab. Check out my 15 Healthy travel Snacks for Airport, Hotel and the Car handout to get a few of my favorites.
Another way to plan ahead its to web search restaurant menus. Check out the menus of the hotel restaurants and those of the surrounding area you will be traveling to. This allows you to choose a place where you can make choices that have stronger nutritional value and keep you on your health journey. If you know ahead of time that a restaurant has a salad you typically enjoy or your favorite type of grilled fish it will make the choices easier.
Planning your stops is also a great way to stay on track while road tripping. Just like you might plan ahead on what restaurants you will visit, you can plan out all the stops along the way. When taking a road trip, gas stations, fast food, and mom and pop places often are the only choices you have. Believe me even at a road side convenience store you can find healthy travel snacks.
They all have their benefits, so the key is to move the needle closer toward healthy living. Perfection isn’t what we are looking for, but progress of keeping that needle away from processed junk with no nutritional value and more toward clean organic food. Gas stations usually have some kind of fruit and nuts near the register. Fast food places now have salads that you can pair with a bunless grilled chicken sandwich, or even better choose a sandwich shop where you can select a whole-grain bread and extra vegetables to make yummy but healthy sandwich. It may not be ideal, but it moves the needle in the right direction.
2. Bring Your Own
Most of the time when we travel, we drive to our destination, so it is even easier to bring our own healthy travel snacks with us. When you
drive to the destination you can bring more than just snacks. You can pre-making meals. So many hotels now days have small kitchens that will allow you to heat up food and grab a meal in the room. This will save your time and money and free you up for fun, sightseeing and activities.
Batch cooking and pre-make entire meals such as pre grilled meats, casseroles, and a big bowls of garden salad will The beauty in this is that it saves you money from the eating out, it keeps you eating the way you want to, and then I don’t have to cook much on vacation.
Plus when you cook it ahead of time, you don’t have to pack and drag spices, seasonings and condiments on the trip. You can just pack the actual food you plan to eat. This makes it an actual vacation for so I am not spending my vacation in the kitchen.
3. Ask for Help
It is amazing what you can learn just by asking for help. I would start with asking for a mini-fridge if you don’t have a kitchenette in your room. With at least a mini fridge you stock it with a few staples for breakfast and snacks. That way you can eat breakfast in your room and keep them on hand, so you will be ready to have healthy snacks on the go.
Also, I have found the concierge at the hotel a valuable friend to make. This is the person that can guide you the best local places. I’m not just talking restaurants, but local market/ grocery stores where you can get snacks to keep in your room. Making a grocery run on day one of your trip, sets up the rest of the week for success. Plus it saves you money. Win win.
4. Hotel Hacks
Using what the hotel provides is a great hack to keep you on track. If you have a coffee maker in your room, you can make instant oatmeal. Stir in dried fruit and nuts for a satisfying start to the day.
Many hotels offer a continental breakfast as a part of your stay. This is a great way to start the day right. Skip the waffles and enjoy some eggs and a piece of whole grain toast. Grab up a piece of fruit to stick in your bag for a healthy travel snack later.
Happy Hour – it is more and more common now for hotels to offer a happy hour. Depending on what is offered, you may want to avoid this time, or use it to grab another healthy snack. I have seen hotels just offer cookies, and others a fruit and cheese tray. If your hotel offers this amenity just ask the front desk what type of food is offered, so you can plan to attend or avoid.
5. Avoid Trigger Foods or Drinks
As a woman that has spent years yo yo dieting, doing workouts, and constantly battling good foods vs. bad. I know that I have a few triggers that make it hard for me to stick to my goals. Triggers being food, drinks or situations that sets off a course of overeating or binging.
For some it could be when they have that particular food that stirs emotions and memories. Maybe a dessert that their grandmother used to make only for them. When it comes along they can’t have just one bite or piece.
For others adult beverages can knock them off their food game. I’ve been there when too many margaritas sent me down the path of not uncontrolled eating, but of making food choices I wouldn’t normally make. Inhibitions are lowered and long term goals are forgotten for the moment.
Even more women eat when they get stressed. I know this is the trigger I most have to prepare for. As all travelers know, 4 hours in an airport or 2 hours surrounded by traffic in an unfamiliar city can raise that stress level to the danger zone. So consciously reducing that stress level will only help make your vacation better.
You most likely know what your triggers are. I know mine. The key is to be aware of them, so you can mentally prepare, plan a counter attack so to speak, for how to handle the situation that will leave you honoring your body and the goals you have been working toward.
Trying to incorporate one or more of these healthy snacks on the go will move that needle closer to continuing to eat healthy while on vacation or traveling with work. Remember it isn’t about eating perfectly while traveling, but about continuing to make progress.
Do you have any tips for healthy snacks on the go?