How to Gain Muscle and Lose Fat While
Travelling - Essential Travel Preparations
Travelling is a great escape from the stresses and habit's of everyday life. It is a time when you might be taking a trip somewhere warm and sunny or for a special event. Either way, travelling is almost part of everyone's life at sometime or another.
Now I know that a lot of people travel to 'get away' from it all, but there are people who travel on a regular basis for work or other commitments. So what happens if you are trying to follow a healthy lifestyle and follow a set meal plan? Well if you are like most people, you probably just convince yourself that it's just not possible to actually follow any kind of diet while travelling. If you do think this way, then you are dead wrong.
Before I inform you on how to prepare properly to follow a healthy diet while travelling, I understand that some people simply don't care about following a set diet on their trips. If this is you, then I would not continue reading. After all, there is nothing wrong with even taking a break from the regular diet for a couple of days. But for those of you who do want to follow your diet over your trips, then read on because I am going to share with you a killer plan so you can sidestep even the toughest dieting situations while travelling.
Top 5 Essentials Packing List:
Ok, let's get started with what it is you need to pack before heading out on your trip.
Either pack some regular utensils (fork, spoon and knife) or even pack some plastic cutlery so that you have something to use while in the hotel.
- Portable Grill
I realize that not everyone may have this, but if you do or if you can afford to get one, you should get one ASAP before going on a trip. I have a George foreman grill and I never travel without it. I actually cook, chicken, steak and fish on this grill inside my hotel room. You can even grill some veggies. Just make sure to do it under a vent or you might have unwanted food odors.
- Tupperware and Ziploc bags
It is always handy to have Tupperware so that wherever your trip takes you, you can transport meals with you by packing before heading out. Ziploc bags also give you a bit more freedom and can be perfect to make ice packs with the hotel ice available on almost any floor. Simply put ice in one bag, then seal ice bag within another bag. Pack in a portable cooler and your set for the day.
- Canned Food
Before letting you know which canned foods to pack, make sure you also pack a can opener or else this essential item might not work! You can easily pack tuna, canned salmon or even chicken and make sandwiches with them in the hotel room. I will explain what else you need to pack to make this a complete meal
I wouldn't recommend bringing every spice container from your home on the road with you but I would recommend putting maybe 2 spice mixes into two separate Ziploc baggies so that you can season sandwiches or meats with. You can bring some salsa, pepper packets and combine spices in Ziploc bags. Perhaps even a small thing of hot sauce. Although I wouldn't recommend ketchup or mustard (as they are not the best for you) you can grab these from a restaurant perhaps maybe if you buy a bottle of water along with it.
- Dry Foods
Dry foods are something you can either pack with you or even shop for at a local grocery store at your destination. Such items may include brown rice in microwaveable bags, rye bread, oatmeal, assorted nuts, rice cakes, pita bread etc. these are things that won't spoil and won't take up valuable space in your 'mini' fridge which you will need for the next item.
Some quick tips for preparing dry foods; you can ask any local coffee shop to microwave brown rice in bags for you if you get a coffee with it. My advice is that you get maybe 4 bags done at a time depending on how much you eat, then store in your hotel fridge and eat cold when you want.
Oatmeal: I normally use the hotel room coffee pot to warm up water, then pour in a mug with oatmeal. I let it sit for about 5 minutes, and the oats soak up the water. Then I mix in some chocolate protein powder.
The rye bread pita bread can be used to make delicious sandwiches or pita wraps.
Even get some peanut butter and slather on your rice cakes with a side protein shake.
Now you have several choices in this department. The easiest choice is probably just to eat your regular meals at restaurants making sure that they contain lean proteins, complex carbs and good fats and simply use the other essential items as snacks. The second option, if your flight is no longer than 4 hours and you have the room in your luggage (not carryon) is to cook your meats in advance and freeze them in a Ziploc baggie. Then once you arrive, store in fridge and they will last about 3-4 days. The final option if you don't have the room or if your flights is longer than 6-10 hours, is to bring your grill with you and purchase your meat's at a grocery store then cook in your hotel room and store in your fridge for quick and easy meal creations for the trip.
If you happen to actually go to the grocery store, you should really pick up some water jugs. Depending on the length of your stay, pick up a 4 liter jug or even two. You might pay $2 for about 8 liters of water instead of paying $4 for about 500ml. don't waste your money. I would perhaps purchase two smaller bottles so that you can rotate them within your fridge to enjoy cold water as most hotel room fridges won't have the space to fit two 8L jugs.
If you incorporate those essentials in your trip planning, I can assure you will have a lot less hassles
sticking to your muscle building goals and/or fat loss goals.
I will dive into how to plan your workouts as well in a future article, but that will be for another day.
Here for you,
Joey Vaillancourt NSCA-CPT