I always wondered why vacation was an acceptable reason to go off track of a health and fitness regime. I fell into that mind trap, time and time again – the belief that just because you are on vacation (or traveling away from home) you will gain weight and eat unhealthy. Because I believed it – I lived it. Take heed of what you believe, because it is very influential on the reality that you experience.
I have been working for so hard, for so long and did not want to start over. So.
I decided to change that belief system this time and I set my mind to believe something different. Something more powerful and supportive of my fat loss goals. I believed that with preparation, intention and thoughtful action that I would come back home with lost inches and maybe even poundage.
It happened. It was easier than I could have ever imagined.
Here are some tips and tricks that worked for me and could help you next time you travel away from home for work or pleasure.
Tips for success:
• Food Preparation : Take some time to look at the week (or days) ahead and pre-cook/prepare your meals or just some key ingredients ahead of time. For example, I cooked about three pounds of chicken (at a time) and kept it refrigerated. If you don’t have access to a cooler or refrigerator, canned fish works really well. Handy storage containers make it easy to take food with you wherever you go.
• Emergency Food: Keep things like protein bars (Quest bars are my current favorite), nuts, fruit (fresh and dried) and raw, pre-cut veggies with you at all times. When you get those pesky munchies, make the conscious choice of taking one of these choices out of your bag rather than purchase that candy bar at the gas station. It may take a while to get used to – but if you keep making the same choice over and over again – it becomes habit.
• Pack a food scale and track your calories: I use Livestrong’s MyPlate to keep track of what I am eating.
• Stay accountable: Bring a measuring tape with you and keep up with your weekly “weigh-ins” (or “measure-ins”). A body weight scale is a bit cumbersome to carry around.
• Eat out! Control your portion size. Order your food cooked without oil and ask for any extra sauces on the side. If you have your food scale with you – weigh out your portions.
• Have fun! You are traveling after all and one of the greatest things about travel can be the food in the region you are in. Taste it, have some – just keep the portions moderate and sensible. Experience it and do not over indulge! Have a cheat meal here and there.
• Relax and know that you can do it!
These tactics may seem extreme if it is totally different than what you are doing now. Take this as an opportunity to reprogram yourself. Pick one or two of these tactics and go with it. Give it some time and before you know it, it will become habit.
If you are like me and sometimes wonder “Why on Earth am I doing this? Why do I continue to seek optimal health and fitness?”….step back and remind yourself of this:
Your body is the harp of your soul. And it is yours to bring forth sweet music from it or confused sounds. – Khalil Gibran (1883 – 1931)
Beautiful, isn’t it?
Until next time…