Getting my act together: Made this for dinner on Tuesday night after practice
Welp. I have struggled with nutrition so. so. much. while traveling these last few weeks. Good news: most of this criss-crossing the country will be done a week from tomorrow. Bad news: I’m not the best at when I’m at home, either. I talked about packing for training, and when/how to work out, so now I’m tackling the nutrition struggle.
On January 1st (how does that seem so long ago!?) I made a resolution to make better foodchoices. Working out a lot means that I can eat a lot of whatever I want and stay pretty much the same size. It doesn’t mean that I should do that, though.
So, what am I going to do? I think the first thing that stands out to me is that I didn’t attack this resolution with the organization or plan that I normally use. I just said, ok I’ll be better! And then proceeded to change, well, nothing.
So, stay tuned for another post that details my plans for nutrition. For now, here are a few of the roadblocks (no pun intended) I’ve encountered while traveling and how to be successful with your nutrition on the go.
Roadblock 1: No healthy choices
If I had any spare time I would totally start a chain of healthy fast-food restaurants in places like hospitals and airports. Why can I get a burger+fries+pop as a “value meal” but a tiny cup of carrot sticks costs $5.99?
To combat this, I’ve been trying really hard to think ahead about where I’ll be all day and what my choices will be when I get there. If there’s no healthy ones, I bring my own. Usually this means carrying an extra bag with cut-up veggies, fruits, my favourite pumpkin bread of the moment, assorted bars, or turkey jerky. If I’ve been away from home for a few days, I’ve tried to find a grocery store to restock (thanks Whole Foods in Vancouver, for the awesome orange and grapefruit slices!)
Roadblock 2: The meal is provided… and you don’t want to eat it
I talked a bit about how I’m traveling around for job interviews right now. These are usually at least half-day affairs, and the programs are kind enough to provide breakfast or lunch in most cases. Just in case I sound like a spoiled brat, I do want to say that I really appreciate the gesture. The only problem is that after 2-3 weeks of sandwiches with creamy sauces, pasta salads and doughnuts, I’m dying for a vegetable. Any one.
I really haven’t found a good solution here. Usually I pick at something small under the pretence of being nervous, which from a social perspective most people seem to think is reasonable. But practically? I’m almost never too nervous to eat and if it’s been more than 4 hours since breakfast I’m definitely hungry. So far, I’ve been eating larger breakfasts that have lots of protein to keep me full. The green blast smoothie with extra protein (above) from pure juice bar + kitchen in Waterloo is really awesome. I also keep snacks in the car so I can eat something right after I’m done. Not ideal, but it sort of works.
The best PB cup ever. And Amazon delivers them right to my doorstep…
Roadblocks 3 + 4: Jet lag/scheduling/missing meals & accountability
For those of you who know me in real life, it’s pretty clear that I would never forget to eat. But I definitely get too busy to eat, and my body absolutely feels best when I’m on my normal schedule.
Combine weird scheduling with the fact that I also love treats (I just can’t help it sometimes!) and my meals are way off. I think that balancing macronutrients is really important for weight management, energy levels, and body composition. Personally, I am for a 50/20/30 breakdown for carbs/fat/protein. It is HARD to get that protein in for a carb lover like me :)
My answer for this one is myfitnesspal. Tracking my meals reminds me that I’ve already had too much sugar for the day, and the app encourages me when I log foods that contribute to my goals. I also get pop-ups on my phone when I haven’t logged a meal.
That’s all I’ve got, kids. Planning ahead, protein, protein, protein and tracking my eats. What are your strategies? I need all the help I can get!