Traveling Light: Strategies for cutting calories while on the road


Do you travel a lot?

I have a HORRIBLE time trying to eat properly while I am on the road! And after a recently super bad family vacation I am trying really hard to change my ways and get through the travel without weighting any weight.

You can still stick to a healthy diet with a little advance planning. If you’re watching your weight, these are some simple techniques for cutting calories while on the go.

Advance Planning:

Okay, I must admit this is the hardest part for me, I am usually rushing around trying to get everything done before I go.  I definitely need to plan that better, but that is for another post.   Here are a few things that I could thing of that will make it MUCH easier. 

  1. Eat a Healthy Meal BEFORE you leave. It’s always easier to resist fattening foods if you feel full. Enjoy a hearty meal before you set out. If you have an early flight, get up in time to enjoy a breakfast of whole-wheat toast and oatmeal with raisins.
  2. Research the Area around your hotel. Phone the concierge or the front desk at the hotel where you’ll be staying. Ask for their recommendations for nearby places where you can eat light. Research the location of the nearest grocery store. You can save money and calories by picking up fresh vegetables and fruits to snack on.
  3. Research your stops or layovers areas. Go online to find your best options at the airports and destinations you have planned. Airport websites usually list their restaurants. Search local business directories by zip code to find ethnic or vegetarian restaurants, health food stores, and farmers markets.
  4. Bring Water. Bottled water is a traveler’s best friend. Staying hydrated helps keep you from feeling hungry. A frozen bottle of water can serve as a cooler to keep your snacks chilled. When it melts, you can drink the water and refill it to use as a free weight for exercising.
  5. Pack a Cooler for your own meals and snacks. Preparing your own meals and snacks will give you more control over your diet. Put together a trail mix of nuts, lightly sweetened cereal, and dried fruits. Fill zip lock bags with cut vegetables or peanut butter on crackers.
  6. Stock up with healthy snacks. Many people spend long hours in their cars. Always have water and healthy snacks handy like nuts, dried fruit, and low-fat energy bars.

Eating Away From Home

If your trips are anything like mine then you KNOW there is no way you can get out of the company or family meals.

  1. Shrink your plate. You can enjoy dining out and still eat like a thin person. Make a meal out of a couple of appetizers instead of a full size entree. Cut your entree in half and take the leftovers back to your hotel for breakfast. Split a dessert with your travel companion.
  2. Zen Eating. Slowing down is a simple and effective way to consume fewer calories. You’ll recognize when you’re full instead of overeating. Put your fork down in between bites.
  3. Reading Lessons. Wherever you eat, there are some common terms that usually indicate dishes low in fat and calories. Look for red sauces rather than creamy white sauces, steamed mussels rather than deep fried fish, and pizza with vegetable toppings rather than extra cheese or sausage.
  4. Always order Salad. If you’ve already consumed a lot of calories for the day, skip the French fries. Order a green salad with low fat dressing on the side. By putting the dressing on your own salad, you can control the quantity and therefore the calories.
  5. Water Only. Soft drinks, shakes, and many cocktails can add on a lot of calories. Drink water with your meals. At the bar, order a small glass of white wine instead of a White Russian.
  6. Play Mix and Match. Many restaurants offer lighter dishes for the health conscious. You can also ask for sauces on the side or substitute another vegetable for the potatoes.

It can be challenging to eat right when you’re away from home. Planning ahead will help you avoid being tempted by fast food. A nutritious diet will give you the energy you need to enjoy your travels and return home without any excess baggage.   My main goal, don’t come home weighting more than I left!  🙂

Creative Commons License Photo Credit: Nicole Hanusek via Compfight

2 thoughts on “Traveling Light: Strategies for cutting calories while on the road

  1. Avoid the french fries mmmm this is a good one, very difficult to do when eating out but I did do it at the weekend, very proud. some great tips here Lori thanks

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