July is in full swing, the kids are out of school and people are planning their summer get aways. Many of our friends go camping, some travel to BC to stay in the Okanagan (just like we did!), and others travel to abroad for big events like Calgary Stampede.
Ben (my husband) and I just took the kids to British Columbia for 12 days, which meant a lot of time on the road. We also were fortunate enough to spend time on my parents boat, enjoying the sun and mountains on the Shuswap lakes. If you’ve never been to the house boating capital of the world (Sicamous, BC) put it on your to do list for shizzle.
Traveling by plane, train, boat or automobile can really set us up for failure when it comes to our eating. We tend to grab pre-packaged foods, which are typically high in sugar or fat (or both!) There are also usually a never ending supply of cold, sugary beverages to be had and the indulging in less that stellar food occurs more than maybe we’d like.
I know back in the day when my girlfriends and I used to hit the road for ball tourneys, it wasn’t complete without a trip to the bulk section of the grocery store to load up on things like fuzzy peach candies and chocolate macaroons. Oh, and dill pickle chips. don’t forget those!
Now, my habits have changed considerably and I’m much more aware of packing food that will not make me feel like a bag of garbage when I’m done eating it. Of course I still pack “treats” but they are fewer and farther between. I also never feel guilty for packing an entire cooler bag for a short road trip. In my opinion you can never have too much food or be too prepared.
And this doesn’t just apply to vacations and getaways.
What about when your on the run all day for work, chasing after the kids, appointments to go to, deadlines, play dates; the list is endless. More and more we overload our schedule and find ourselves hitting up the nearest McDonalds for something quick and then feeling awful about it an hour later.
Here are my top 3 tips to keeping your diet in check whether your traveling or just plain busy living life:
1) Always have water. It’s no secret that many times our hunger comes from being dehydrated. Typically when we feel thirst, we are already on our way to being dehydrated. I always have a very large water bottle filled up next to me, and if I run out, I stop and get more! Mix it up and get a flavored club soda (I love cranberry ones) or mix with your favourite BCAA’s (branch chain amino acids) No calories, lots of refreshment and can fill the void when you don’t have access to a meal or snack.
2) Keep a stash of satiating and goal appropriate snacks in your bag, purse, car, wherever. I’ll admit, I’m a total food hoarder. I have food stashed every where and I never leave the house without packing a snack. But guess what! I rarely end up passing through the Wendy’s drive through for a bacon-ater and frosty! Quest bars (my fave protein bar by far!), nuts (skip the salty & flavored kind), apples, snap peas, even jerky is a good option in a pinch. Think protein (most satiating food source), skip the sugar, choose fresh if you can. Next time your going through a drive through, I want you to look at the grocery store across the street and ask yourself “what’s stopping me from getting fruit, nuts and a few slices of deli meat?”
3) GUM!! OMG, if someone took my gum away, I wouldn’t know what to do. Find a flavor you love and stock up! Chew chew chew! It can stave off hunger temporarily & help curb cravings. Hey – whatever works!!
My kids love traveling with me because they know the big cooler bag will be perched at their feet and I’ll happily dole out snacks the entire ride. Yes – there are sometimes treats in there like candy and/or chocolate (although its usually 85% dark chocolate and they don’t like that) But for the most part, it’s fruit (berries, apple slices or bananas), nuts (I love the mixed nuts from Costco), jerky from our local butcher (beef, bison, turkey, we love it all) and if we have chips, they are almost always sweet potato, beet or other veggie chips, or rice cakes. That’s what we know, and it’s what we like.
So if you’re getting caught on the run or planning your next road trip, I hope these tips will help you out! Take your progress and health into your control by making sure your always prepared!