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Eating Healthy While Traveling

Eating Healthy While Traveling

Make Time for a meal

Trying to be at the top of your game is really tough to do when you haven’t eaten, especially if you’re headed straight from the airport to a meeting or conference. I know my hosts mean well when they have cheese and cracker or fruit trays, but I can’t eat the cheese and crackers and I can’t live on fruit alone. Instead, I’ll make time to eat at one of my favorite restaurants that’s located at the Denver airport, especially if I know when I land, it will be a while before I’m able to eat again. It makes all the difference when I get there.

Plan and pack ahead

If I can, I pack food for my trips. Sometimes, it will be raw veggies for the flight so I’m not stuck with pretzels or peanuts. Sometimes, I’ll pack my Nutribullet blender (small enough to fit in a suitcase) or my shaker cup, portion out some protein powder and hit a grocery store when I arrive before getting to the hotel, to pick up almond milk, fruits and veggies to make up smoothies in the morning. I just know that the hotel breakfasts of eggs, waffles, and sugary carbs, aren’t going to have anything I can eat. I want my energy to last to lunch, not till they bring out the danish trays and coffee!

Healthy options at the airport

If I don’t have time to pack food, or stop at the restaurant in the Denver airport, or if I have Madeline with me, airport concession stands nowadays are a really good alternative. They have some really good, healthy options. The key is high protein, hydration, low salt, low sugar. I’ll pick up some protein bars, nuts, raw, fresh fruit or cut up veggies and bottled water because I know that if I go anywhere near the high calorie, processed and fast food stuff, it is going to slow me down and in no time I’m going to feel like crap. All that sugar, fat and salt are going to bloat you and dehydrate you simultaneously, and then you’re going to do is crash. If you’re an omnivore, go for the lean, low-salt meats like chicken or turkey. Your digestive tract and energy will thank you.

Knowing my destination

Boulder is such a healthy city, filled with vegan, organic, healthy restaurants and grocery stores. But when I leave, especially when I go overseas, it’s all about meat. Almost the entire center of the United States is meat and potato country. When I know I’m going to places like that, I research the grocery stores, the restaurants, and spend time preparing for where and how I’m going to eat. If I come up with really limited options, it is a guarantee that I will be packing my protein powder and shaker cup. If I’m going to be gone for just a day or two, I’ll use the time as an opportunity for a juice cleanse, then it’s super easy!

Fit in a little exercise

I used to be super neurotic about exercise, obsessed with getting a full workout even when I was traveling. But that’s even harder to do than eating right, so I work out hard before I leave and when I get back and just try to take the travel as a break, to focus on getting done what I can. If it’s a long trip, I’ll bring my running shoes and try to get on a treadmill or go for a walk on the beach. If I’m visiting someone I’ll ask to go to a yoga class. Even 30 minutes on an elliptical machine is something, and it usually helps me to relax a little from all the craziness of a trip.

You’re not always going to be able to eat healthy when you’re traveling, so when you get home, be kind to your body. Lay off the sugar, salt and caffeine and detox your body with a few days of smoothies, rehydrate with a bunch of water and a few drops of peppermint oil to fight inflammation. Most of all, be gentle to yourself.

Got any tricks for surviving travel diet? Share them on the YogaDownload comment section or on my Facebook page.

By Hayley Hobson

With her unique specialization in the combination and complement of pilates, nutrition and yoga, Hayley offers a cocktail of lifestyle changes that produce real and lasting results. Hayley is a columnist for Elephant Journal and has been featured in Pilates Style Magazine, Natural Health Magazine and Triathlete Magazine. She currently lives in Boulder, CO with her husband, former world-ranked triathlete, Wes Hobson and their two beautiful daughters, Makenna and Madeline. Read more about Hayley and check out her new book at

Enjoy one of Hayley's Empowering classes today:

Empowerment Flow 

Tighten Your Core 


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