No, this is not where I am right now. But wouldn’t it be great?
Given my intense travel schedule this month, I haven’t been doing much cooking or baking. When I am at home, I just want to whip up something light and fresh and – above all – easy. I only have a finite amount of time to spend with the hubs for the next couple of weeks and (confession time) I don’t really want to spend that time in the kitchen. As much as I love to be in my kitchen, until this stretch of travel ends I want to make the most of my weekends and spend them being active and hanging out with my hubby. Aside from throwing together a salad (and you’ve already seen two of them!) I’m just not into cooking at the moment.
But I didn’t want to abandon you guys again, either. Even though I’m not in my kitchen, can’t we still find stuff to talk about? I think we can. Unfortunately, I can’t regale you with tales of my travels, because (1) I’m in an area without many great foodie options nearby, and (2) I don’t want to reveal what city I’m visiting, because this trip is business, not personal. Given how long I’ll be away, I’m not in a position to put healthy living on hiatus until I am home for good. Here are some tips for healthy travel that I’ve picked up along the way…
1. Eat a healthy breakfast. This one applies just like it does at home. Eat a good, stabilizing breakfast and you’ll be much less likely to hit the vending machine or grab a donut from Starbucks by 10:00 a.m. Great hotel room options include whole fruit (you can buy it at the airport or sometimes even in your hotel) with peanut butter (bring individual serving packets with you); “real food bars” like Larabars; or oatmeal if you can swing it. When I can, I try to plan ahead and pack some nutritious snacks that can serve as breakfast in a pinch. I’ve currently got two Larabars stuffed in my purse. Mmmm, flat Larabars!
2. Hit the salad bar hard. I’ve been eating in the same cafeteria for lunch almost every day, and it’s a bit light on healthy options, and especially on vegetarian choices. Thank goodness for the salad bar! I’ve had one or two days that didn’t go as planned, but most days, my go-to lunch as been a pile of mixed greens, cucumbers, carrots, bell peppers and chickpeas for protein, with balsamic vinaigrette. Fresh, tasty, and keeps me going until dinnertime. Remember, when you go to the salad bar, don’t overload on the cheese and high-calorie dressings! And if a salad bar isn’t an option, you can almost always get a salad made for you at a restaurant. Just ask for the dressing on the side and dip your fork in, or drizzle half of what they give you over your plate.
3. Find the fitness center. Whenever I check into a new hotel, one of the first places I look is almost always the fitness center. I like to see what kind of equipment they have and psych myself up for my workout. I tend to get cranky if I go too long without doing something active, and business travel often involves long hours of sitting (on planes, in airports, in meetings…). Knowing that there’s a convenient fitness center so I can fit in a workout does wonders for my outlook and stress levels. Plus, I’m training for the Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run, so skipping an entire month of workouts is not an option for me. But even if you don’t have a fitness goal, you can still benefit from a visit to the fitness center! Try out a different piece of equipment or create your own mini circuit. Your trip, your rules.
4. Cut yourself some slack. Travel is fun, but it can be stressful too. Even if you have intense diet and fitness goals (and who doesn’t? it is January, after all), it can be hard to keep yourself motivated on the road. It’s okay. Do the best you can, make as many good choices as you can, and don’t beat yourself up if you slip now and again. Soon you’ll be home and back in the comforts of your routine. I’m just doing the best I can, knowing my favorite NoVA running trail is waiting patiently for me back home!
What are your favorite tips for healthy travel?