Traveling can cause even the most dedicated, disciplined eater to stray off course.
Here’s a pretty natural unfolding of events. You arrive in a foreign city, and your body’s clock is off. You’ve been stuck on an airplane and taken the strong, bold step of avoiding snacks at the airport, assuming you’ll grab a meal first thing upon arrival. But you ate breakfast at 6:00 am and the flight was delayed ninety minutes. By the time your bags arrive and you’ve groggily thrown your gear into the rental car, it’s been seven hours since you received an injection of nutrition. You’re officially starving. You drive out of the airport and begin to pass the fast food. You’re strong enough to press on the gas pedal as you near the golden arches, keep going past Burger King, and then…fuck it. In a moment of weak crankiness, you’re in the Taco Bell drive through ordering 3 Cheesy Gorditas, a bean burrito and a Diet Pepsi. At least you were economical.
Here’s how I avoid this situation.
- The night before travel, grab a paper shopping bag and fill it with a piece of fruit, a bottle of water, organic beef jerky (I get mine at Trader Joe’s) or another easy protein source like a pre made chicken breast or hard boiled eggs, and some leafy greens like kale or spinach.
- The day you travel, wake up and drink tons of water. Make an effort throughout the day to stay hydrated.
- Arrive at the airport 30 minutes earlier than you would normally. Spend the extra time “Yelping” natural food store choices in your destination cities. Find the most convenient option, and commit to making it your first stop from the airport. Buy food for your whole trip. I suggest convenient foods like bottled water, berries, prepared proteins like salmon, chicken, tuna etc., organic almond or peanut butter and avocado for healthy fats. With a variety of those foods, you can piece snacks and meals together. It is also more cost effective than eating out. Call your hotel ahead of time and have them put a small fridge in your room. Most budget hotels have them in the rooms already; more expensive hotels will likely accommodate your request.
- If you’re traveling by bus or taxi, you’ll need to be more efficient and pack that paper shopping bag with larger portions.
This takes a little dedication on the front end, but will make your life easier and healthier on the back end. Like anything else, these lifestyle choices take practice. I believe in you like you believe in me.