Travel Hacks - "Must-Haves" For The Healthy-Minded

health habits meal planning movement snacks travelhacks Mar 06, 2023


I generally try to stay focused on my day-to-day activities, but I must admit - I am very excited to be preparing for our upcoming family vacation!


People often ask me how we stay on track when we travel, so here is a list of “must haves” that I am excited to share with you:


Opportunities for Activity and Movement


When looking for accommodations, I will often look for a place that has a pool and/or a gym so that we can stay active.  Having your place of rest situated within walking distance to attractions/restaurants will also offer an easy opportunity to work toward your daily steps goal.  I am not suggesting that you are not allowed to take time to relax because you ARE on vacation, but it is important for you to move each day.  My personal activity plan on vacation will include strength training in the gym, some yoga and mobility work and a goal of reaching my daily minimum of 10,000 steps. 


Travel Day Hydration and Snacks for the Kids


As the boys get older, I make them more and more responsible for what they need to pack for themselves.  A refillable water bottle is at the top of the list.  To add to the amount of hydration that the water provides, I will often take an electrolyte mix for them.  A second benefit to adding this to their water is that it contains vitamins B and C which are good for the immune system.  The boys will also pack protein bars, nuts and trail mix to minimize the number of times I hear, “Dad, I’m hungry” when we are in between meals. 


Travel Day Hydration and Snacks for the Adults


I often avoid caffeine when I fly to further reduce any chances of dehydration and follow the rule of at least a cup of water for every hour of flying time.  Sometimes I will bring portable packets of “greens” (find more info about these in my previous post) or will be doing an intermittent fast.  I find it easier and to fast when I don’t have access to the foods that I normally eat. 


Menu and Meal “Prep”


One of my favourite things to do is to research restaurants so that I can take a look at their menu and make sure that they have foods that my family and I would enjoy. I still stick to my 90/10 when I’m on vacation so I will consciously eat “normally“ most of the time and allow myself whatever exceptions I feel I would enjoy the most. This might include a specialty cocktail, a beer I’ve never tried, a bite of a shared dessert, maybe some ice cream, etc. 


If your accommodations allow you to prepare some of your own meals, you may want to consider preparing a meal plan before you leave with quick and easy recipes that you can prepare when you are not in your own kitchen. We will often eat out once per day and try and make the rest of our meals ourselves.  I enjoy cooking and I really enjoy grocery shopping in other places - yes I am a nerd:)


 Mobile “Pharmacy”


We always bring a small natural “pharmacy” with us when we travel. This would include a few supplements like magnesium, fish oil capsules and a multi B.  Tea tree oil for cuts/first aid and oil of oregano to help fight a cold/virus are also staples.


Along with the above supplements, we will take natural sunscreen with us.  Most traditional sunscreens contain harsh chemicals so it is important to find one that has zinc or a natural sun blocker.  


We normally don’t apply sunscreen until we have enjoyed some time each day without it.  On the first day, we will allow 15 minutes before applying and then will increase 5-10 minutes each day as we get used to the sun exposure.  It is a balance between not burning and getting adequate amounts of vitamin D as using sunscreen blocks your body’s ability to produce the vitamin D that you get from the sun.  We have also found that taking a combination of fish oil and astaxanthin has worked in the past to prevent our family from burning.  If there is an odd occasion when they do, a little bit of aloe will take the heat and sting away.


This is a quick look at what we will be focusing on during our vacation.  What are you going to focus on?  Remember, it does not need to be perfect!  Pick one or two areas of your health routine that you want to keep on track and make a plan to do so.  The important thing is to take this time away to rest, relax and recharge - which is exactly what I will be doing.


Safe (and healthy) travels!!


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