When we lived in California, I learned first-hand what a toll traveling can take on your body. Because both of our families live on the East Coast, cross-country, day-long flights were the name of the game for a few years.
Staying healthy can seem like an arduous task when you have early wake up times, airport meal options, and no access to your regular kitchen and gym, making it easy to give into processed food, excess coffee, and packaged meals. In the process of all that cross-country travel, I sort of mastered the art of maintaining as much of my healthy routine as possible on the go, and I hope these tips will help you do the same!
- Bring an Empty Glass Water Bottle: When I can, I remember to pack our glass water bottles. I love the Swig Savvy brand because they are truly leak-proof and relatively lightweight. Avoiding purchasing water inside the terminal saves us SO much money, but if we forget I will snag at least two large Smart Waters before boarding the plane.
- Pack “Security Safe” Snacks: My favorite snacks are portioned nuts, hummus and carrots in small tupperware containers, protein bars (RX Bars, ThinkThin, and Quest are my favorite), and portable, non-messy fruit (think apples and pears). I also LOVE to pack a plain Siggi’s yogurt, but I’m about 75% success getting this past security as it is considered a liquid.
- Pack a Meal, When You Can: One of the best things I’ve started doing is packing a salad or a sandwich the night before to bring along with me. I have learned that finding healthy airport food is nearly impossible, not to mention the added stress of purchasing food when you have a tight layover). David and I like to stop by Whole Foods salad bar the night before and transfer our salads to our own tupperware containers for the plane. I also think wraps and sandwiches are a less messy, portable option for flights.
- Book a Hotel or AirBnB with a Mini Fridge: Since I have a sensitive stomach, eating out 3 meals a day for the duration of a trip really takes a toll on me. I always try to get in at least one “home cooked” meal per day on our trips. Usually, this is breakfast. We’ll stop by the nearest health food market and pick up berries, bananas, or oatmeal. When I have room, I also love to bring our portable blender with individual vegan protein powder packets (Whole Foods usually sells them) for this meal. Realistically, this could save you about $20-30 a day on your trip.
- Take Magnesium Packets to Help with Jetlag: We discovered CALM packets several years back and take it every night without fail. It not only improves our sleep, but magnesium contributes to more than 300 processes in the body, and it is very difficult to get enough via diet alone.
- Stay Moving: David hates that I do this…but I always like to walk from gate to gate rather than take the tram, escalator, or elevator. Those extra few steps make a difference in how you feel! We also try to stay active on our travel and include hikes, bike rides, short jogs, or explore cities by foot. On our most recent travel day, we hit 14,300 steps just from airport walking alone. I was blown away!
- Plan to Indulge: Life is meant to be experienced, and life without some indulgences would be a life without joy. When we traveled to Palo Alto recently, I knew I was going to have some of our absolute favorite goodies from the area: ice cream, pizza, and a creamy tomato soup that is the best I’ve ever had. We never overdo it (split a small ice cream, split a piece of pizza), try to keep it to 1-3 small indulgences for the duration of the trip, and always get right back on track the next day. It’s a lifestyle, not a set of rules. 🙂
What’s the hardest part of staying on your routine when you travel? What works for you to stay healthy, moving, and sleeping well on the go?