Are you stressing about how to maintain your nutrition habits while you vacation? Or, maybe travel is a regular part of your week and it feels like you can’t get ahead because you haven’t created routine. Fear not! Here’s how to create a foolproof travel nutrition plan.
Ask yourself How you want to feel while you travel.
Think about how you want to feel while you’re away from home on a spectrum. On one end is puffy, tired, hung over, don’t-ask-me-to-do-much, and on the other is lean, energized, fresh, let’s-do-all-the-things. There will be times when you can afford to skip the alarm, order room service and opt for late check-out - and times when you can not.
Ask yourself How you want to feel after you travel.
Maybe you’ll be easing back into a chill week of work. Or, perhaps you have late nights ahead with several projects due. Can you afford to skip workouts, undereat your needs or do you have time-dependent goals that require more adherence?
List the habits and behaviors that make you feel your best.
These are the daily or weekly actions that make you feel like you’re crushing it! Everything from eating a filling and satiating breakfast, eating meals instead of nibbling all day long, meditating for 10 minutes, taking a walk at lunch, reaching for that one snack instead of that other snack, drinking XX ounces of water, ordering a salad instead of fries, vodka over beer, tracking your food, getting to bed by XX time, reading a chapter, journaling. List at least 10 and include food and non-food related actions.
Think through the type of trip you’re taking and identify 3-5 actions that you can absolutely commit to.
It’s probably gonna look different if you’re headed out of town to Cabo for your best friend’s bachelorette weekend vs. attending a seminar with Jan from Accounting vs. taking the kids on their first road trip to the Grand Canyon. There’s no right answer here, just be honest about what you can do while leveraging how you want to feel during and after the trip (see step 1-3).
Maybe some of your “crushing it” actions get revised slightly. For example, you feel your best if you’re sober, but alcohol will be a part of your travel experience so you decide to commit to a XX drink max per night, XX drink max per trip, XX type of alcohol only. Or, there’s no way you can track macronutrients accurately while you’re away, but you can commit to eating whole, real foods in macro-balanced meals because you have enough experience to know what that looks like.
Think through any Prep you have to complete to improve success?
This is the time to jump on Amazon or drop by Trader Joe’s for any items that you need to put this plan into action - TSA approved foods, travel sized storage, high protein “just-in-case” items. Depending on your list, it might also be a good idea to check out menus, identify the nearest grocery store, locate a gym, or communicate your needs and wants to your travel companions. Don’t skip this step! It’s is essential to set up your environment.
Congrats! You’ve just created a list of realistic, travel non-negotiables that are unique to you. You’ve also minimized potential for surprise. And, the best part is, there’s no failing this plan because you wrote the rules.