How to Eat Well on the Road
Do you travel a lot? Spend time working away? This is often one of the biggest obstacles we hear people talking about.
It's easy enough to find a box when you're away from home. One of the great things about our community is how you're always welcome to drop in, and meet some new training buddies.
But the food can be a bit more challenging. Do you fall off the wagon when you're outside your usual routine? Here are some tips to help you next time you find yourself on the road.
This one goes without saying, but it's surprising how many people fall at the first hurdle. If you're going to be away from your usual routine, you need to plan how you're going to stay on track.
How long are you going to be away for? Will you be able to train while you're away? How long will you have to find food? Will you have food provided for you?
All these questions will help you determine the best approach to take.
Take It With You
If you're not going to have time to hunt out decent food, why not take it with you? If you have facilities to reheat your meals at your hotel, this is sometimes the easiest option.
If you want to be super organised, take your slow cooker with you! We know plenty of people within the community that do this, and they swear by it. Cook your food while you're out in meetings all day, and it will be waiting for you when you get back at the hotel. Just learn from our friends' mistakes, and leave a note asking the maid not to switch it off!
Don't Forget Your Snacks
Most people are fine when it comes to finding a relatively clean meal on the road. In an emergency, Nandos is your friend! Instead, they forget about their snacks - and end up grabbing something less than healthy instead.
You might have more of an appetite when you're outside your usual routine, especially if you're quite sedentary at home. Plan accordingly, and make sure you have plenty of snacks with you.
Here are some ideas:
- Dried biltong and nuts,
- Nut butters (we've got loads to choose from in our online store!),
- Fruit and nut bars.
It's a good idea to stick to snacks that don't need to be refrigerated, so you can take them with you when you're out and about.
When you're on the road, especially if you're driving, dehydration and boredom can be misinterpreted as hunger.
Keep plenty of water on you, and reach for that before the dairy milk!
Sometimes, we find ourselves unprepared and we need to stop for food - usually on the motorway!
When this happens, you don't have to default to the worst possible choice. There's usually something you can go for that isn't too far away from something you'd usually eat.
Service stations are nowhere near as bad as they used to be - they have more choice than McDonalds or Burger King. M&S and Waitrose do some decent food on-the-go, so try somewhere like that first.
Supermarkets do so much more than they used to. 'Free From' aisles and sports nutrition sections can help, and most places have a Deli counter where you can grab yourself a cooked chicken.
Cheat meals make the world go round, right? If know you're going to find it hard to stay on the wagon while you're away, embrace it and go for something you genuinely want to eat.
The worst is when you try to eat well, but end up falling off the wagon anyway. In these situations, you're more likely to eat something for the sake of it, rather than because you actually want to.
If you're going to treat yourself, do it with intention - and go for something you'd choose for your cheat meal.
Don't Work Yourself Up
When you're in a good flow with your training, it's tempting to be as strict as possible with your diet.
Consistently filling your face with rubbish isn't going to do your training many favours, but a little blip isn't going to hurt too much.
An emergency sandwich isn't going to kill you. It might not be cool with the Paleo Police, but it will get you home!
Be smart when it comes to your food. If you need to eat, eat. When you're training regularly, your body needs to refuel.