Zero Weight Gain Holiday Challenge

Traveling Over the Holidays

airplane Many of us travel over the holidays to visit friends and relatives. You may even take a vacation trip. These journeys can sabotage your weight control efforts. Here are some things to do to manage better:

• Take a water bottle with you. This will prevent you from treating yourself to sugary drinks. Even if you are flying, take it through security empty, and then fill it up once you are near your gate.

• Pack stretch bands. These bands can help you to stay toned when a fitness room may not be available. You can even use them during travel breaks to relieve stiffness.

• Take your own healthy snacks. This may be a piece of fruit, a small self-stable box of low fat milk or a bag of cut-up vegetables. These can be transported in an insulated lunch box. If you are flying, purchase fruit after you go through security. It is also more likely you will skip the heavy desserts if you have some fruit back in your room once you get to your location.

• Plan your meals. Know what restaurants you are likely to visit and what they offer. Call friends and relatives ahead to know what will be served at meals. Ask whether they can provide a smaller salad plate instead of a huge dinner plate so you can control your portions. Offer to bring a lower calorie dish to share if that is feasible.

road travel• Look for local fitness opportunities at your destination. This may be a park where you can walk, a local gym offering day passes or a fitness room at hotels. If you belong to a Y, you can usually use a Y in another location for either little or a minimal cost. You can also walk the concourse at airports or take 10 minute walks every two hours at rest areas along the interstate.

• Keep a food diary. Even if you normally don’t record your food intake before you eat, this may be a good time to do so. You will not be following your normal routine so keeping track will reduce mindless eating. Use a small notebook or try one of the apps like MyFitness Pal.

• Don’t overschedule. If you get too rushed or too tired, you are more likely to make poor food choices and overeat. Plus adequate sleep helps weight control.