I recently came back from a road trip with my boyfriend. We traveled from Philadelphia, PA to High Point, NC; Charlotte, NC; Hilton Head, SC; and Charleston, SC and finally back to Philadelphia in 5 days. The trip was wonderful and we were lucky to have great weather during our stay, which allowed us to do outdoor activities.
Throughout the trip I realized how easy it could be to veer away from your normal diet and exercise routine. So here are a few tips for traveling that I think are very important.
1. Drink lots of water. Because you are in a new place and on the move traveling, it can be easy to forget about water until you are already dehydrated. Keep a water bottle with you at all times. Fruits and vegetables also put water into your body, so eating these will also help with hydration.
2. Prepare healthy travel snacks. Because you are constantly traveling, it may be tempting to grab the greasy chips. If you are traveling by car, the majority of food options will be fast foods. Preparing your own snacks for the trip will keep you satisfied until you are ready to grab a good meal at the airport or off the highway. You can prepare fruits like, grapes, apples, oranges, bananas, etc. Think of some vegetables that you may like, such as, carrots, celery, tomatoes, etc. Pack yourself pretzels, or multi-grain crackers. Prepare foods that you enjoy and that will help you maintain your diet.
3. Do some sort of physical activity. I know some trips might not be for relaxation and "me-time" but if you can find at least 10 minutes throughout your day to do something it will be better than nothing. Find out what's around your destination area, outdoor or indoor activities. If where you are staying has a gym, there is no excuse to skip exercising for at least 10 minutes.
During our stay at Hilton Head, we found that throughout the island there were bike trails. We rented bikes for three days to go all over the island. This was a great way to see Hilton Head. We took a walk on the beach, and ran 6 miles one morning. While inside the hotel we did some body weight exercises (squats, push-ups, and sit-ups) and while watching T.V. we took our time to stretch our upper and lower extremities as well as our core.
4. When eating out try to avoid sabotaging your diet. I know it's vacation, I know you may not want to cook, I know that you will want to try signature dishes, but this does not mean to forget the way you eat when you are home. I'm not telling you not to dine out, I'm just telling you to dine smart. Don't order a plethora of food that you know you won't be able to finish. If you can't finish your plate, don't force it, take it back to your hotel for leftovers if there is a refrigerator. Eat small bites, and chew slowly so that you have time for your body to tell you it's full. Order water and not a calorie filled drink; try to avoid beers wines and liquor if possible, otherwise try not to have more than one glass. Try to order a dish that has a variety of different foods, like a dish with vegetables, a grain and a meat.
5. Have fun! Make sure you do something you enjoy. If you are on a business trip you want to make sure that you do something for you during your stay. You are in a new environment, and a different place, you should take advantage of this time to enjoy life.
Jenna Webster, ACSM, ACE – Personal trainer specializing in empower busy women to live healthy and active lifestyles!”