With work travel at an all-time high and my determination to not lose the progress I've already made in the realm of fitness, I've had to figure out how I would manage the rest of my fat loss plan. I've tried guilt-tripping myself, pigging out, and running off the day's mistakes at the gym.
While I have yet to get this thing fully figured out, I've learned a lot about what it takes to stay fit on the road and hope to share it with you!
1. Plan Ahead
By knowing which restaurants you will go to, you have an opportunity to check the menu for the best choice possible. You can also bring an empty water bottle and shaker bottle for your protein shakes along with you. Depending on how long your trip is, you can purchase individual protein packets from the grocery store's health food aisle to last you.
2. Drink Your Water
"Virtually every system in the body relies on H2O, says Lawrence Armstrong, Ph.D., a professor of exercise and environmental physiology at the Human Performance Laboratory at the University of Connecticut."
Water helps keep you alert, hydrated and prevents you from snacking during false hunger pangs due to dehydration. You also can give a full effort to your workout and prevent dizziness or other health scares that happen when you don't get your standard water intake.
3. Make Your Workout Plan Before You Go
Check out the hotel gym where you are staying or get a travel pass from your home gym. Based on what your priorities are, create a workout plan that hits key areas like arms, abs, back, and legs. Thanks to the internet, you can google "arm circuit" and come up with a great workout easily. If you're short on time, stick to HIIT workouts which range from 20-30 minutes typically.
4. Skip the Appetizer
With eating out comes appetizers and plenty of them. If asked, use your willpower to decline the appetizer. I'm learning it's the easiest way to exceed your dinnertime calories. The average appetizer holds about 813 calories according to AppforHealth.com, as opposed to the average entree which sits at about 675 calories. If you're a woman, that's at least half of your daily intake and if you're a man that's about one-third.
5. Be Naughty At Night
I don't know what came to mind when you read this and I'm certain I don't want to know, but what I'm referring to is how you eat throughout the day. I always start light by opting for egg whites instead of the whole egg. In that way, if I slip up at dinner I know I've been good most of the day. Try to be good during the day since your willpower is at it's strongest, versus trying to be good at dinner.
6. Give Yourself A Break
Don't be too hard on yourself if you find yourself slipping up here and there. No one is perfect. I remember being completely disappointed in myself the first time I went off my diet, but it happens. If you're feeling really bad, hop on the treadmill to burn a few extra calories after your workout.
7. Mix Business With Pleasure
I'm not advising going out at night to get wasted after work, which by the way is horrible for your body, but if you have time try to find a dance or yoga class near you. It will be a great way to get out and about while burning some calories. Take an early morning hike or an early morning run if possible. Go sightseeing on foot. Be creative about how you can stay active during trips.
If you remember anything else, strive for progress instead of perfection. Remember that you don't have to give up on your fitness goals just because you find yourself hitting the road more than usual. With a little determination and planning, you'll be able to closely replicate or replace your at-home routine and continue shedding pounds. Best of luck!