Well, I've always coached clients how to eat well while traveling all the time. I knew it wasn't easy, but I did have tips and solutions. I've just returned from 8 days on the road in the States. Having not traveled in a long time, I was reminded how difficult it can be! And I have to say it... the US certainly has some restaurants that highlight fat-laden meals, seemingly more so than in Canada.
Here is what I learned:
*Don't ever eat one of those "bowls" that stuffs eggs, cheese, hashbrowns, hollondaise sauce and sour cream into one dish! (Perkins - gross!)
*Invest in a cooler, especially if you're road-tripping, and hit a grocery store. Buy things like whole wheat pita, hummus, raw cut vegetables, fruits, light babybel cheese, raw nuts and cooked chicken breast. These foods can last a few days and end up saving you a ton of money, as well as give you a needed break from restaurant meals (almost always delivering too much sodium, fat and calories).
*Don't associate restaurants with indulging or eating what you want when you're traveling - we often do this at home, and then before you know it, you've indulged six out of seven days and come home with seven extra pounds of fat on your body! It can happen very easily. Restaurant meals can abundantly deliver a days' worth of calories in one meal. If you indulge even twice a day while on vacation, you can have a very depressing and uncomfortable homecoming. Modify your restaurant meals - choose half portions, make one meal last two, ask for everything steamed and without added fats.
*Many hotels have "on the go" breakfasts now, where you can simply order toast, cereal or oatmeal. Opt for this, and save yourself 600-800 calories in the morning from a full breakfast. At home we usually have something a bit smaller, right? Certainly not bacon and eggs daily (I hope)! Cut some calories where you can.
*LIMIT ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION! Nothing will throw your physique out of wack faster than booze-filled evening after booze-filled evening. If you have even 3 drinks per day, that can result in an extra 500 calories daily. That will put one extra pound of fat on your body by the end of seven days, easily (as 3500 calories = 1 pound of fat).
All in all, remain focused on your meals resembling your healthy lifestyle at home. Toast and peanut butter for breakfast, sandwich for lunch and a salad with chicken (dressing on side) and soup (broth-based) for dinner. These kinds of things will help you to avoid coming home miserable, lethargic and unable to show off your tan with confidence.
And the kicker: if you keep up your workouts, you won't experience a very demoralizing and discouraging butt-kick when you get back! And you'll feel great about what you've kept up while away. It's beyond worth the effort when your body can remain metabolically charged and will maintain its fat-burning style!
*photo courtesy of: http://www.thedailygreen.com/media/cm/thedailygreen/images/cooler-ice-food-lg.jpg