I love dessert.
And why shouldn’t I? I love good food and I’m certainly going to indulge once in a while… Especially when I’m on vacation.
While traveling, I’ve learned to be selective about what I eat so that I’m indulging when it’s really good and “worth it” but not overeating when the food is nothing special. I want to make sure that my calories are going to foods I really enjoy.
I also get a lot of exercise when I travel. It’s not a burden in any way and I feel great when I hit the right chord, balancing my fitness level with yummy treats.
Here are my main tips for staying healthy and balanced while on vacation:
1. Be selective about WHEN you indulge to balance your day
Do you want to have a really great breakfast? Great! Then have a lighter lunch, or skip lunch altogether and eat breakfast later to turn it into brunch. If you know you want to have a really great treat at a little bakery you heard about in the afternoon, then go easy on breakfast and lunch, or even turn your afternoon treat into lunch for the day. It’s all about how you fit it all into your day.
Part of this is leaving room for dessert. If you know you really want dessert, then plan to eat a bit less so you can have room for it!
2. Eat your vegetables and avoid unnecessary junk
Just because you’re on vacation doesn’t mean that you should throw away all of your healthy habits. Include some vegetables and fruits into your day just like you would on a regular day. Choose to have a salad with at least one of your meals, or as your main for one meal. I often have salad as my entree at lunch, leaving breakfast and dinner to be more flexible. I also don’t eat fried foods unless I *really* want them. If I do have fried foods, I make sure to give my system a break at other meals by having more vegetables.
One change that I’ve made over the years is that I generally avoid a sweet breakfast. I know that I like to have dessert later in the day and that can add up to way too much sugar if I’ve also had a sweet breakfast. I also find that sweet breakfasts make me feel more hungry sooner since they play tricks with your blood sugar. It’s rare that I have a sweet breakfast and when I do, I try to make it brunch a bit later on, not at an earlier breakfast, and then I follow up with a healthier dinner.
If you’re drinking a lot of fruity, sweet drinks, keep that in mind as they definitely contribute to your overall sugar levels.
3. Find fun ways to get moving
We’re pretty active on most of our vacations. We walk a lot, and we like to go dancing at night. Dancing is a great way to be active of course, but so is walking around to take in the sites, or swimming, or renting a bicycle. On days when we aren’t too busy and we aren’t naturally very active, I really enjoy checking out a new gym on a cruise ship or at a hotel. I often go to the gym while my husband has an afternoon nap, or sometimes he joins me. I don’t have to do a really hard workout, but even doing some light weights helps to break up the day and make me feel like I’m giving attention to some self care.
4. Drink lots of water
It’s easy to get dehydrated while on vacation. Bring a water bottle with you and make sure that you’re drinking enough to help cleanse your body from all of the indulgences. This is especially true if you’re drinking a lot of alcohol.
We have a vacation coming up in a couple of weeks and I’m planning to follow my own tips. Do you have any other tips that help you while you’re traveling? Let me know!