Summer is here, which means so is travel season! Stepping away from our normal routine can no doubt tempt us to fall off track with our health. Whether you’re going camping, heading out on a road trip, or jet setting to some far off land, keeping an eye on what you eat is key to making sure you feel great & have the energy for any adventure that comes your way. Being prepared can mean the difference between staying fit and gaining 10 lb. It can be the difference between feeling in control and crashing back into your old sugar addiction habits.
When did it become the norm to give ourselves permission to eat horribly as soon as we step away from the house? Going camping? Load up on s’mores, smokies, and bags of candy at Costco. Heading on a road trip? Time to hit every fast food restaurant on the way and forget that water even exists. Who decided this was a good idea? I’d like to have a chat with this person-please call me at 250-893-8321.
Ever notice that after a vacation you feel like you need another vacation just to recover? Sure, it may have been your busy schedule for fun. Or it could be that you fell head first off the wagon and didn’t pay attention to your health during your trip (it’s most likely a combination of both). The trick is committing to a little planning ahead of time so you can enjoy the great outdoors, and still feel amazing after your trip.
What can you do, you ask? You can make sure you stay on track with your health, no matter where you are, with a few easy tips. Yes, it’s going to take a bit of planning & effort. But trust me, it’s well worth the extra few hours it takes to know that you’re staying strong and doing what’s best for your body.
No matter where you are on the road or in the bush, these tips are an amazing guide to help you prepare in advance and stay focused on your health while having good old fashioned fun.
The most important part: prepare in advance
- Take time days in advance to plan your meals & snacks for each day.
- Make a shopping list to go with your meal plan
- Make a big fruit salad & green salad. Pack in containers.
- Pre-cook meals (soup, chili, sauces, black bean burgers, quinoa salad)
- Pre-pack snacks (nuts, dry fruit, veggies, & hummus) in individual containers
- Fill water bottles & remember to drink them
- Make granola bars & power balls in advance (store in freezer until you leave)
- Make wrap fillings (rice, black bean, onion, garlic, spinach, pepper, & spices)
- Pre-slice cheese & bread
- Pre-cook chicken for sandwiches
- Raw Nut mix (avoid excess bad oils & added salt from roasted or salted nuts)
- Dry fruit (caution: high in sugar, if you’re sensitive)
- Granola Bars. Easy to make at home and pack in advance!
- Power Balls. Even easier to make and freeze until you need them.
- Cut up veggies or healthy crackers & hummus or guacamole. I never leave my house without a batch of hummus by my side!
- Whole fruit. Pack fruit that doesn’t bruise easily like apples, oranges, grapefruit, grapes, & blueberries
- My favorite bananna pancake recipe. They are a delicious cold snack.
- Nut butter (almond, peanut…) and crackers
- Tea. Yup that’s right. Feelin’ peckish? Just make a yummy cup of tea (chai is my favorite ) & before you know it, it’ll be lunch time!
- Fruit & granola
- Porridge (make a mix in advance or use quick to cook oats & add some seeds, nuts, & fruit to sweeten and fill you up)
- Hard boiled eggs & avocado toast
- Scrambled egg morning burrito (Toss in onion, garlic, and veggies and you have yourself a wrap. Grill over the fire for a delicious crisp)
Lunch & Dinner Ideas
- Soup & Chili (Bring it frozen & it doubles as a freezer pack in your cooler!)
- Black bean burritos (prep filling in advance)
- Buffet style sandwiches with whole wheat bread, hummus, avocado, sprouts, cheese, home cooked chicken breast (please avoid deli meat *|FNAME|*!), cucumber, lettuce, hard boiled egg, red pepper, or any other yummy veggie you can think of.
- Pre-made pasta sauce over rice or pasta
- Quinoa Salad (make in advance)
- Green Salad with chickpeas & sprouts
- Remember that your post dinner bevvy serves as a desert. No need for anything else if you’re already planning on having a bottle (I mean glass) or two of wine
- Cut apple slices with cinnamon. Wrap in tinfoil & roast over the fire
- Fruit salad with toasted coconut
- Continue to move daily. Maybe it’s going for a hike, playing a game of soccer with the kids at the campground, or strapping on your running shoes before you jump back in the car and hit the road. Make it a priority to find time to get your body moving every day. Sure, I may be the only crazy person to do a “fun” biathlon on my vacation in Hawaii, but even a brisk walk is a great way to stay on track!
- Commit to yourself, in advance, to put in the effort to stay healthy & in control on your trip. Staying healthy is as much a mindset and commitment to yourself as it is what you actually do. There is nothing quite like the feeling of knowing you stayed healthy and active even though you were on vacation.
- Laugh a lot. The whole point of a vacation is to free yourself from the daily grind of everyday responsibilities. Remember to keep your mind healthy too! Let go of control and laugh when things don’t go as planned. Laugh as much as you can each day & you’ll feel refreshed in no time.
So, now that you’re armed with some great tips, I challenge you to plan ahead on your next trip and see what a difference it makes!
Just writing this is getting me excited to head out camping! The sun is out and it’s a great time to connect with nature. OK, off I go to plan my trip.
Please share any great camping or on-the road tips & tricks you have! I’d love to hear them in the comments below.
Love & Healthy Travels,