On a recent trip to San Diego, where I traveled for 16 hours on 4 planes, I saw a sign on a kiosk that read “Treat Yourself Today. You Deserve It.” Underneath the sign were a bunch of different candy bars: Twix, 3 Musketeers, Snickers, etc. For those of you who follow me on Instagram (@omthemoment), you know that I live a plant based lifestyle and believe in honoring oneself on a daily basis…which basically means making your best mind, body and soul choices every day. And I don't believe that 'treating' yourself to a food-like candy bar is something your body deserves or needs.
Traveling can be stressful all around. Have you ever gotten sick right after you travel? Or does your plumbing not work correctly when out of town? It’s because we stray from our routines or we adopt this ‘hey I’m on vacation’ type of attitude and abandon the nourishment our bodies need. When you fail to plan, you plan to fail so here are my tips on how you can travel healthy on the go-go.
Ditch the purse, bring a backpack: I’m usually carrying tons of books and magazines for the flight so I bring a backpack with me. It serves to house all of my reading literature AND you can load it up with food. It easily fits under the seat in front of you so you can access it whenever you need it.
Bring an empty reusable water bottle: Fill it up at a water fountain once you pass security. Because of the low humidity on the plane, dehydration is a cause for concern. Try to drink as often as possible.
Fruit it up: Buy a ton of fruit, cut it up and store it in gallon size plastic bags. Fruit is the easiest and most accessible food to snack on and you feel light and satisfied after eating it. Plus, many fruits are loaded with Vitamin C and antioxidants which allow your body to fight off those pesky germs lurking around. I pack a small paring knife (in my checked bag of course), extra plastic bags and a portable cutting board so I’m able to cut up fruit in my hotel room. I load up my backpack each day with fruit just in case I can’t find any healthy food options.
Go Nuts: Nuts are a great source of protein and full of fiber to keep you fuller, longer. I like to make my own trail mix with sunflower seeds, cashews and walnuts or you could buy some at the market. Try to buy them raw and unsalted without the chocolate (we are trying to be healthy, right?). You could also bring some granola bars like Kind Bars (aim for under 5 ingredients and nothing that you can’t pronounce). The key is to not allow yourself to get hungry. Once you feel starved, it’s easy to make poor choices. So snack away!
Hot Tea, Please: I love to have hot tea on the plane because I’m usually cold and it feels like a treat, so I bring peppermint or green tea bags with me. It goes great with the mixed nuts or granola bar. Just ask the flight attendant for some hot water/lemon and you are good to go.
The more you know: What I’ve found to keep me motivated on my health journey is to always be reading something informational/inspirational. On the plane, I read Thrive: The Vegan Nutrition Guide to Optimal Performance by Brendan Brazier and Meat is for P*ssies: A How-To Guide For Dudes Who Want To Get Fit, Kick Ass and Take Names by John Joseph. If you haven’t heard of either of these guys, it’s worth looking them up.
Don’t Hate, Meditate: As soon as I get to my seat, I put in my earphones and open my meditation app. I’m not such a good flyer so I prepare myself mentally before the flight takes off. Sometimes I meditate well into take-off and calmly fall asleep. It’s the best.
Excuse Me-Pardon Me: When I have the choice, I select the aisle seat. I usually have to visit the restroom a few times during the flight but I mostly need to stretch my legs. It’s a good idea to move around especially on longer flights but if you don’t want to be that person climbing over folks, you can do wrist/ankle/neck rolls or alternate legs to chest, anything to get the blood moving. Here are some other suggestions.
Engage: I’ve met some pretty interesting people on flights. I encourage you to engage and listen to someone else’s life story. Not only will it make the flight more enjoyable but you could learn a thing or two.
Journal: I keep a journal but I don’t write in it every day. Actually, when I journaled recently on the plane, I noticed I hadn’t written since July. But that’s OK. I like to journal when I travel because a. I have the time and b. it’s great to preserve the memories of your trip. So if you don’t have a journal, get one for your trip and write away! Journaling is extremely cathartic. There is just something about putting pen to paper that allows true introspection.
And that’s all folks! These are my quick and easy tips for keeping yourself healthy on the go-go. If you have any tips that you would like to share, please share them in the comments below.