Take your vacation without vacating your nutrition and fitness

by Christopher B. Robrahn
Fitness Columnist 

In the August issue, the focus of this column was to spotlight smart ideas to plan for eating out at a restaurant. I suggested you go out prepared for what you should order from the menu questions you may want to consider asking a waiter about the content and preparation of the meal.

While nutrition information has improved, the burden rests on you to make smart choices that make sense. This month, the focus is on nutrition during your vacation; talk about a challenge.    

Forget the challenge of good quality exercise for a minute. How do you maintain some good nutrition in on a business trip or certainly a vacation? I find this scenario one of the most challenging.

So, you’re off on your grand escape for the year; your long-awaited family vacation. Maybe you are going alone and exploring areas of the US, maybe a hike or some beach time. Perhaps you are lucky enough to go outside the US to some great place to explore. Sounds awesome. 

Whatever you do, it presents some nutrition and fitness challenges.

Just returning from a week at the Grand Canyon, I had a chance to think about this question. I traveled by car. I prepared by taking a cooler, filled with ice for cold drinks. I took along fruit, and some good, healthy snacks, and I thought about what kind of food I wanted to consider on my trek.   

It partially worked, but many variables were injected. My nectarines froze in a motel refrigerator, and grocery stores don’t carry the same foods in different parts of the country. And food in touristy areas cost a lot more.   

Also, I didn’t think about the difference in elevation, demand on my energy since I did some major hiking while at the canyon. All worked, I actually felt fine and lost two pounds during the vacation but realized I could have prepped much better.

The most important question is to know yourself and in what ways your body and system do well and what you find challenging internally. Map out what you want to do. Remember a business trip, and certainly, a vacation is a break from your norms, so the decisions you make will have an impact on how well you feel during and after your vacation.  

If you are going out of the country, always know the source of your food and water, and know what you are consuming. The worst thing would be to eat or drink something and get sick in the process.    

Don’t just take some junk food and fill up and think about how you are going to store the foods you take. Making sandwiches in advance sounds smart, but ingredients can spoil, even with coolers.

While this discussion is abbreviated, think about how your nutrition can support your trip. Making the right decisions will help yield a healthy and exciting vacation. The key is planning and structure! 

Oh, and the Grand Canyon was absolutely amazing. Go if you get a chance!

Copyright The Gayly. 8/30/2019 @ 11:35 p.m. CST.