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Tickets? Check. Money? Check. Passport? Check. A delicious, organic carry-on meal and healthy snacks for your flight? Ooops...I knew I had forgotten something. If you are traveling this holiday season, be mentally prepared for those crazy security lines, delayed flights, and sprinting through airports to make tight connections. All of these will leave you with limited time to shop for healthy food at the airport. Even if you do have time, the healthy options are usually going to be few and far between. Trust me, there is nothing worse than eating some airport Chili's To Go meal, then hopping on a coast to coast flight, only to run into your own 'major turbulence' 3 hours in. Add in those damn changes in air pressure and you are carrying a 'bomb' that no security scanner would catch! Remember that these planes are a shared, controlled air environment people. Help a brother out!

My simple advice for food options while traveling, stick to 'Plan and Simple'.

PLAN AHEAD

Once again we return to this same advice. If you are able to just plan a bit ahead, then you should have no problem staying on track with both your food choices as well as your food volume while traveling.  

[one_half]"Trust me, there is nothing worse than eating some airport Chili's To Go meal, then hopping on a coast to coast flight, only to run into your own 'major turbulence' 3 hours in. Add in those damn changes in air pressure and you are carrying a 'bomb' that no security scanner would catch!"[/one_half]

1. BYO MEAL: Headed on a long flight back east into the cold, or for you lucky dogs headed west to Hawaii, pack a small meal to bring with you on the plane. You want to land at your destination feeling healthy and happy, not bloated and uncomfortable. And yes, we are allowed to transport food through security lines. Try these easy carry-on ideas:

     BREAKFAST:

  • 2 hard boiled pasture raised chicken eggs and a piece of organic fruit with a homemade Green Smoothie. Smoothies are always a better option than pressed juices because you get all the fiber. Not sure which eggs to purchase or worried about eating egg yolks? Get more information using our blog on Pasture Raised Chickens.   
  • Organic, plain greek yogurt, a piece of organic fruit, some gluten free granola ('Giddy Up and Go' granola is local to SF and delicious)

     LUNCH/DINNER:

  • Bring your own salad with some protein (boiled eggs, ground beef, chicken, etc). I always bring an avocado to mix with meat and greens for dressing.
  • Pack a simple meat and vegetable meal from your leftovers the night before
  • Nothing in the house? Save yourself an extra 20 minutes on the way to the airport and run by Whole Foods hot/salad bar to make your own salad to carry with you.

2. USE YOUR RESOURCES: I realize that time to plan ahead may be tough to find for most busy travelers, so use your resources to assist with the process.  In San Francisco, take advantage of great meal delivery companies like Lilah Belle's or Munchery to pre-order a healthy meal to take on the plane with you. I have been using Lilah Belle's delicious organic food service for over 10 years now to order a few meals a week as back up for when I arrive home from work too exhausted to cook something healthy. These meals have not only kept me on track with my food choices, but they have also helped me continue to introduce a great variety of organic, sustainably farmed foods into my meal plan every week.

[one_half]"From this day forward, remember that packing your food is just as important as packing your underwear when traveling. (Maybe even more important for those of you commando fans.) "[/one_half]

3. SMART TRAVEL SNACKS: Don't rely on processed, prepackaged protein bars or trail mix as your snacks, when it is just as easy and way healthier to make your own by combining raw nuts with a piece of seasonal organic fruit. (Note: Remember that 6 raw nuts = 1 serving of fat, so don't start shoving tons of raw almonds in thinking that you can eat all you want because they are healthy.)

MY VOTES FOR THE BEST TRAVEL SNACKS: DSC_0432-1024x680

  • 6-12 raw nuts (almonds, walnuts, etc) with a piece of organic seasonal fresh fruit
  • Homemade trail mix: combine raw nuts with unsweetened, dried organic fruit
  • Local, grass fed beef jerky. In San Francisco, The Fatted Calf butcher has delicious varieties for purchase.
  • Hard boiled pasture raised chicken eggs are also a great, easy travel snack.

MAKE SIMPLE CHOICES

The travel date arrives and you have been running a sprint for days in advance with no time to plan in any way. Do not fret, there are still some healthy options for food while traveling. In general, my advice is to stick to the most simple options available. 

1. GRAB A BITE ON THE WAY TO THE AIRPORT: Again, save just an extra 20 minutes to run by your favorite healthy food bar (i.e. Whole Food) or restaurant to pick up a meal to take with you on your flight. Stick to simple salads, meat and veggies, fresh fruit.

2. THE DREADED AIRPORT FOOD COURT: Whether you are dining at Hot Dog on a Stick or

airport

Sammy Hagar's Diner, always choose the most basic items on the menu at airport restaurants. Boiled eggs, salads, grilled chicken breast, basic meat and veggies are your smartest options. This is no time to order the fettucine alfredo. Always look for the lowest fat meats when you are unsure of the quality of the source, since the fat is where any toxins would be stored.  One final option before boarding, you can almost always count on the Protein box from Starbucks. It is definitely better than getting stuck eating the foil wrapped, flattened croissant egg-wich with Jimmy Dean Sausage and cheddar cheese that is being served on your morning flight.

3. SPRINT TO TERMINAL 2: In San Francisco, get down to Terminal 2 and pick up a salad and a kombucha from The Plant Cafe. Then you can also stop by the Napa Farm's Market for some raw nuts and fresh organic fruit. Heck, you can even squeeze in some vinyasa and a little Warrior 2 in the yoga studio in Terminal 2 if you have time. Yeah, we are pretty much spoiled rotten here in San Francisco. Use this link for a full break down of the food options at SFO.

From this day forward, remember that packing your food is just as important as packing your underwear when traveling. (Maybe even more important for those of you commando fans.)  In the end, you will be saving calories, probably saving money, helping to preserve the air quality of your flight, and definitely reducing the stress of staying healthy during your holiday travel.

 

DIAKADI’s The 12 Days of Fitmas: Welcoming the holidays and year’s end as a time for relaxation and celebration, The 12 Days of Fitmas will teach people to take the time to enjoy the fun of the season, while reflecting on the year and looking forward to the year ahead. The series tackles the biggest problems that many face: stress, holiday parties, eating well, preparing for the New Year, and more.

“The holidays tend to be one of the most challenging times of the year for our clients,” says Billy Polson. “The stress, over-booked schedules, party foods, alcohol and travel plans wreak havoc on their workouts and their bodies. The 12 Days of Fitmas are our effort to help people not only survive the holidays, but thrive throughout them.”

Through The 12 Days of Fitmas, DIAKADI will demonstrate the belief that fitness is about far more than dead lifts, burpees and the spin class. Rather, fitness and health encompass all aspects of one’s lifestyle including sleep schedules, stress levels, deep breaths, proper fuel for the body, and enjoying life every day. DIAKADI will use video to demonstrate topics like “Ultimate Destination Workout,” ensuring that whether one is at a beginning or an advanced level, they will learn proper form and technique for the perfect workout regardless of location. The principals discussed in the series will be applicable beyond the holiday season and throughout the New Year.

Originally published at Patch.com.

Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips Day 3: The 80/20 Rule: By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays Day 8: The DIAKADI Destination Workout: Anytime, Anywhere, No Equipment Necessary Day 9: Silent Night: How to Stay Rested Throughout the Holidays Day 10: The Holiday Hustle: Getting Off the Couch and Out of the House for the Big Day Day 11: Start the New Year Off with a Bang Not a Bust: Do What You Love this New Year’s Day 12: When the Clock Strikes Midnight: Successfully Setting and Reaching Your New Year’s Goals

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