How to follow a diet while traveling or if you drive a lot for workshare on: facebook | twitter | google+ | reddit
A friend of mine asked me if I had any advice for losing weight with the caveat that you have to do a lot of driving for your job. To the point where most of your working hours you are in a car and don't have the ability to cook.
Cooking is super important not only for making dieting easier, but also for general health. You have far greater control over exactly what and how much food you're consuming, and tracking accurately solves a lot of confusion and struggle. But what if you can't cook?
Now, I don't actually drive for my job. In fact, I work remotely from my laptop, so I could stay at home all 24/7 if I wanted to. However, I have gone on several long distance road trips across the United States and have lived in conditions that prevented me from cooking (for example a mastless sailboat in Miami), so I have a few tips I can share.
Alrighty, so first off, if you're only traveling for a short time, like for a one-time vacation trip, consider not worrying about your diet, enjoy yourself, and come back to it when you return. But if you want some preventative maintenance, you can follow these tips as well.
On the road again...
Driving is stressful. It's super uncomfortable, your awareness is elevated to keep you from death at any second, it's usually noisy, fits of road rage consumes you, it sucks. Every time I go on one of these road trips I tell myself I never want to do them because of the hell it puts me through, and you probably know how I sometimes handle stress (hello Burger King).
A few random tips
Because of the stress, you should expect certain things like water weight gain and inaccurate scale readings. Take lots of breaks and make sure you're well rested. Get out and walk around. Drink water.
You'll be buying lots of packaged foods, so tracking calories should be a breeze. You can still easily maintain a calorie deficit. Scan it right in using MyFitnessPal or another calorie counting tool.
I find that I do best if I stick mostly with protein and veggies. Carbs make me feel even more bloated than I already am while traveling, and personally if I feel my clothes fitting bad I want to give up for the rest of the trip and make a Wendy's run. There's a list of foods I like to buy below.
Sometimes you won't have a choice depending on the time of day if you haven't planned ahead and you'll have to hit a fast food joint or a a quick-stop gas station. I prefer the latter since there's usually healthier options and I won't be tempted by the nuggets.
Walmart is a good late night option since they are so abundant and they usually don't mind if you sleep in your car in the parking lot.
Salads from Chipotle with double meat and avocado = always a winner.
Food items I've been buying lately
- Packs of hardboiled eggs
- Salad "kits" (a mix of greens, nuts, other veggies and dressing all in a bag you can shake up)
- Imitation crab meat (currently addicted to this)
- Tuna packets
That's it! Take care of yourself, drive safe, and REST.
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