5 tips for a healthier vacation
- Getting your workout earlier in the day ensures that you start your day on a healthier note
- Start each meal with a salad or take some raw vegetables with you to snack on throughout the day
- Be present with those you are vacationing with
Summer is the time to go on vacations, wind down, and enjoy time with friends and family. But this laid-back approach to life can lead to unhealthy habits that leave you feeling sluggish, fluffy, and not your healthiest.
Vacations are about relaxing and enjoying the season, but making healthy choices is still possible. In addition, making healthy choices on vacation will lead to more energy and enjoyment in the long run. Here are some tips on how to have a healthier, but still enjoyable, vacation!
- Workout daily. Yes, EVERY DAY! Usually, hotels and cruises have complimentary gyms. These gyms typically have personal televisions so you can watch your favorite shows or movies, making your workout more enjoyable. Or take some workout DVDs with you and workout in your hotel room before the day begins. Getting your workout earlier in the day ensures that it will actually happen. Invite your family and friends to workout with you as well so you don’t feel like you are missing out on spending time with them. Making this a family affair will also keep you accountable to go and get the workout done.
- Fill up on fruits and vegetables first. Start each meal with a salad or take some raw vegetables with you to snack on throughout the day. Or choose some fruit at breakfast time. These are easy ways to fit in fruits and vegetables, which ensures that you will fill up on fiber, vitamins, and minerals before the other treats you may be enjoying.
- Get rid of the “all-or-nothing” mindset. Many people go on vacation and believe this is their only time to enjoy sugar-laden, highly palatable foods. So they eat as much of these foods as possible and leave vacation feeling miserable, guilty, and nauseous. Don’t let this be your story this summer! Vacation is not the only time you can enjoy ice cream or fries. These foods are available all the time. Enjoy your treats in moderation and don’t go to vacation with the mindset that this is the only time you can enjoy these treats.
- Follow the 3-bite rule This rule saves the day when you want to enjoy a treat on vacation. If you order a dessert, split it with a loved one and take 3 bites. The 3-bite rule is something I recommend to all my clients because it still allows you to enjoy the treat without over-stuffing yourself. Three bites is more than enough to taste and enjoy a treat. So choose treats wisely, take three slow bites, and enjoy each and every one!
- Have FUN and be present. Be present with those you are vacationing with, and don’t make food the center of your day. At the end of the day, food is simply energy to sustain us from one meal to the next. Enjoy each meal, but above all, enjoy those you are with. Pour into your family and friends, enjoy each experience and excursion, and be present with those around you.
Above all, remember that food is not the only way to enjoy a vacation. This doesn’t mean you can’t have treats or enjoy your meals, but you can pick these foods in moderation as long as you are making other, nutrient-dense choices throughout the day (and not eating huge portions).
And enjoy all aspects of vacation, not just the food! Bond with your family, relax by the pool and read, go on walks, and look into some non-food related activities to do to relax and enjoy your time.
Being happy and stress-free will actually decrease your chances of having a food free-for-all, and setting back your healthy eating plans significantly. It is okay to enjoy, and even indulge (remember the 3-bite rule!) but overall, try to stay as active as possible, choose healthy, colorful foods, and ENJOY!