I’m not going to lie. I was scared, totally scared. Scared I would completely blow it and have to tell my challenge group that I let them down! See in the past, I always saw holidays and vacations as an excuse to completely pig out. Chips and candy for the long car rides, waffles or pancakes for breakfast each morning, ice cream at the beach, wine and late night snacking, and the list goes on. I really had to wrap my head around the fact that it was possible to eat clean while on vacation and still have a great time, not heading home 5 lbs heavier. Of course, I planned to enjoy some treats and we knew we were going to be eating out for some of it but with some extra planning and prep, here are a few tips on how we were able to maintain a healthy diet and stick to a workout routine while on the road and during our vacation:
Preparing for the Road Trip
The day before we left for our trip, I went to the grocery store and bought tons of healthy snacks to pack in a cooler for the 10 hour drive ahead! I pre-packaged it all in ziplock bags so it was easy and convenient to grab while driving and also so that we didn’t end up eating a full box of crackers in one sitting for example. haha it can be easy to over snack during long drives like that! We packed the cooler with lots of snack foods like raw veggies, non-messy fruits like grapes and apples, cheese, turkey slices, hard boiled eggs, and multi grain crackers. We also brought lots of water bottles! We found a playground about 4 hours in and stopped for a picnic to eat our packed lunch and let the twins run around. I had brought stuff to make our own salads and the kids their own sandwiches.
We stopped at on enroute for supper and although healthy options seem to be limited at these places, you CAN find them! Thankfully the one we stopped at had a healthy fresh food option with fresh salads and stir-fries. I ordered a thai chicken stir fry with veggies on brown rice. An enrolee we stopped at later in the trip had a pizza place and a starbucks. I was able to find a pre-packaged salad in the fridge area but other then that, it was a challenge! We didn’t have service on our cells while in the states so it made things a bit difficult but if you’re planning to stop at rest stop or a particular restaurant look online at the menu ahead of time! Choose meat and fish items that are steamed, broiled or grilled and choose veggies that have been steamed over sautéed or fried. It’s also a good idea to ask for dressings or sauces on the side.
Staying Active and Healthy while at a hotel:
While the majority of our trip was spent at a cottage, we stayed at a hotel for a night on the way there and for a night on the way back. Before we booked, I made sure the hotels had gyms! I know that working out once you check into a hotel might be the last thing on your to-do lists, but honestly, it was so great after spending 10 hours in a car with two toddlers to be able to get active for a bit and work those muscles after the twins were asleep. Since I can take my workouts anywhere ( all I need is my laptop, a mat and some dumbells) I totally could have just worked out in the hotel room but it was nice to get on my own for a bit and more room too! My husband and I took turns working out so it worked out great! And it felt SO good to know I was staying on track with my routine too!
It’s always a plus for us when hotels have a continental breakfast but you probably know that there seems to be A LOT of unhealthy options. Seek out the good ones! There was always something that I could make work. Some examples are plain greek yogurt topped with nuts, banana and dried berries, or plain instant oatmeal with apple slices and cinnamon with a side of eggs. Steer away from the waffles, muffins and sugary cereal!
Staying active and healthy at your destination
We used Air B&B for this trip but we made sure to book a place with a kitchen and it also had a bbq so for most of the week, we cooked our own food! We went grocery shopping as soon as we got there and stocked the fridge with easy to grab fruits and veggies, yogurt, cheese sticks, and fresh fish and chicken to bbq.
Most mornings, I got up and did my workouts first thing (a little later then normal of course!). My husband thought I was a little crazy for taking along my mat and videos but I was determined not to fall out of that routine! My workouts take 20-30 min so that was nothing to get them done first thing and not have to worry about it the rest of the day! We were very active outdoors most days too with lots of walking, swimming etc., so 1 or 2 days I did miss a workout and didn’t sweat it! Being active is what it’s all about!
I also brought my shakeology along which means I had to bring my ninja too. It was the best afternoon treat after the beach each day! Chocolate shake blended with almond milk and bananas is like chocolate ice-cream!
Plan out your cheats for the week ahead of time
Don’t deprive yourself completely! You need to live a little too so it’s all about balance. We knew that we were going to be eating out on certain nights so I planned for it! If I knew I was going to splurge a little over supper,( I HAD to try a famous lobster roll!) I stayed on track with my nutrition the rest of the day! We enjoyed a couple treats too like some fudge while we were visiting province town and a s’more around the campfire. Moderation is key especially when it’s a lifestyle but I’m not joking when I say I cheated for every meal during vacations in the past.
The best part about staying on track while vacationing was that I came home feeling SO much better then I used to. I actually lost a couple pounds from being so active!
I think something thats really changed for me is that I have a different relationship with food then I used to. I can now focus on and look forward to the other things while vacationing like the quality time I’m spending with my boys and the memories and the laughs. I’ve been learning to eat to live instead of living to eat and let me tell you, it’s made a world of difference!
Happy Healthy Vacationing! Thanks for reading.