Spring has sprung and spring breaks have begun. Taking a vacation doesn’t mean you have to take a break in your healthy routines. By doing your homework and planning ahead, you can enjoy your trip without tripping up your good eating and exercise habits.
One sure way to make certain you stay on track is to plan your whole vacation around your physical health and well-being. Some of the possibilities include spa stays, adventure travel, hiking/biking/walking tours, eco tourism and volunteer vacations—all of which have their own healthy benefits. Different venues have different levels of intensity, so be sure you check out the rules and review any disclaimers before you commit.
Wherever your travels take you, there are some easy, practical steps you can take before you hit the road to help you stay on a healthy course.
Stowaways are A-OK. No matter where you go, how you get there, or how long you stay, making sure you have what you need to keep focused on healthy eating is simply a matter of planning ahead and taking your regular routine on the road with you, as much as possible. Plan of attack? Pack your snacks! Take along some of your favorite essentials, as well as some extras, so you aren’t caught off guard in case you hit a snag in your travel plans, such as bad weather or a flat tire.
Know before you go. Do your homework while you’re still at home. Research organic shopping possibilities you can access along the way of your travels. Airports are finally starting to offer healthy eating options, for example, so do an internet search to learn what choices you’ll have at any airports you’ll fly through. Try to find out what healthy food options might be available to you once you reach your destination. Knowing what you can obtain once you get there can help you determine how many cashews to stash or bananas to bring until you can re-stock for the road home. Depending on your vacation location, you may be able to shop at a national chain, such as Whole Foods Market, a local organic grocery or hit a local farmers market.
Bonus tip: Episodes 1 and 2 of my TV show, Fork in the Road with Sheree Clark, will give you all the skinny on shopping at farmer’s markets. To order all 13 episodes of Season One of Fork in the Road, go here.
“All-inclusive” options. If you are going to an all-inclusive resort area or perhaps a cruise—where your food and beverages are totally paid for ahead of time–do some advance work and check menus for the healthiest possibilities. Fresh fruit is usually abundant at these types of places, as well as on cruise ships. You might even be able to talk a bartender into blending your very fave fruits into a smoothie for you.
What to pack to stay on track. Your walking/running shoes are a must wherever you go. Be sure you use them extensively. Walk instead of grabbing a cab. Take a bike or walking tour of the town you’re visiting. Consider taking and wearing a pedometer, too, and challenge yourself to hit the recommended 10,000 steps a day. Pack your usual exercise clothes so you can take advantage of any exercise facilities where you are staying or check out a local gym. Many gym memberships offer reciprocity, so check with your home gym before you go to see if that’s an option. Some exercise facilities provide promotional offers such as one week free, for example, so before you go, look into the possibilities at your vacation spot.
And don’t forget… Remember to take any vitamins, herbs, supplements and/or teas you use on a regular basis. Think and pack small; daily amounts can be easily portioned into store organizers, baggies or other containers. The more you can carry your regular day-to-day routine on the road with you, the better.
Get going already! It’s not too late to plan your spring getaway. Fun can be done in a short weekend hop or even an easy day trip to that great little town so-close-to-you-but-why-haven’t-you-been-recently! Do. Go. Now.