For many, summer is the time to hit the road for family vacation. Below, Kim Meeuwsen, Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist with the Mary Free Bed Weight Management Program, offers 5 tips to help you and your family keep active, eat healthy and stay on track while on the road:
Load up on healthy car snacks! Try packing single servings of nuts or whole grain cereal in sandwich baggies to keep portions under control. Or, keep a cooler with cut-up veggies and hummus, fruit, string cheese, water bottles and other low-calorie beverages to avoid those gas station temptations.
Plan ahead for roadside meals. If you’re on a tight timeline and have to do a drive-thru, choose healthier options such as a salad with reduced-calorie dressing, yogurt parfait or a plain hamburger. Skip the fries, mayo and cheese to save more than 500 calories!
Know before you go. Check out the websites of local restaurants and pick your dinner choice before heading out to eat. Some may even have nutrition information on their website or available upon request at the restaurant. This will definitely help you to make a healthier choice. (Plus, your party will be impressed you don’t even need to look at the menu.)
Stay active. Book hotels with fitness centers or plan something active for your family to do each day such as nature hikes, walking/biking tours or dune climbs. Most cities will have a map of local trails or parks available online or at a visitors’ center. If visiting family, local high schools often offer open gym times and local fitness centers may have guest passes you can purchase for the week. It helps to research ahead of time!
No fitness center? No problem! Try this hotel room circuit below for a quick (and quiet) full body workout. Perform these 12 moves for 30 seconds each with 10 seconds of rest between each move and modify as needed. Repeat 2-3 times.
[Jumping jacks, alternating lunges, push-ups, squats, crunches, jog in place, calf raises, tricep dips, standing mountain climbers, wall sit, seated abdominal twists and plank]
Just because you have a fun vacation planned doesn’t mean your summer fitness or summer weight loss goals have to be put on hold. A little research and planning ahead can go a long way! Have safe and happy travels.