Apr 29, 2014

Weight Gain and Vacation

Yesterday's blog was about going to Lake Havasu for the Poker Run boat races which was great fun!  Everyone knows going out of town (and the travel time to get there) consist of poor eating habits.  This is a pretty loose statement because I am generalizing poor eating habits with travel.  What I mean is that it can be difficult to make good choices when options are limited.

While driving the only choices are fast food, convenient store, gas station or greasy restaurants.  While flying there are even less choices on the plane and the airport has tons of unhealthy choices.  Once you reach the destination then you will be having restaurant meals or fast food the entire time.  I will say that eating while on vaca can be a huge chore but it can also be done in a way that limits, reduces and even eliminates weight gain.  I know that nobody wants to gain weight but sometimes it happens. What are you supposed to do?  Stay home?  In yesterday's blog I mentioned that we rented a house.  We always do this and it is one of my favorite things to do because you have access to a kitchen, fridge and stove.  Which means we actually can control what goes into our mouth.

Depending on who you are traveling with it may be easy or difficult to find a common ground on what foods to get.  If this is the case, and it probably will be, be prepared to get your own fruit or veggie tray.  It is possible nobody else will eat it but at least you have some better choices for yourself.

On the way out of town we stopped at a burger place where I ordered a mushroom burger and pulled off a lot of the bun.  I like to have a little bun, plus the body needs carbs but buns typically have 200-300 calories in them so that really racks up the calorie content.  I already know there will be some drinking going on which means I gotta stay ahead of the game before I ever get started!

While on this trip there were bags and bags of chips, beef jerky, trail mix, Gardetto's, Cheeto's and candy.  There were canisters of chips and containers of coffee cake - all flavors and varieties.  There was coffee, creamer, flavored syrup for the coffee and, thankfully, Pure-Via which is a Stevia based sweetener with 0 calories.  Hallelujah!

Just because everyone else is doing it doesn't mean I have to damn it!  I am not saying I had absolutely none but I only had a few chips and a tiny piece of beef jerky.  Just enough to taste it and then move on with my life.  Vaca is just a time to enjoy myself away from home and work.  It is not an all out eat-fest and sometimes it gets treated that way which is why people commonly gain weight because of eating while on vaca.

Additionally, people view vacation as an opportunity to taste new things and enjoy cuisines of different areas.  If this is the scenario then portion control is in order but if it is a place you have been before and may go again then there is no need to load up like you're never going to get it again.  As previously discussed, another reason for weight gain on vaca is fewer healthy choices.  I have written a lot on how to make healthy choices and here is one of the articles I wrote which gives some great tips that work.

We got food for dinner that night which was hot dogs and brats.  It is not a salad or grilled chicken but we are not sitting our asses in the kitchen all night so we have to mix convenient with healthier choices.  I would not put brats or hot dogs in the category of 'healthy' because of the processing involved, the nitrates in them and the calories if eating more than one but, for the sake of convenience, they'll do.  Besides, they taste good!  We got the sauerkraut and mustard to go with them and I got a veggie tray.  Veggies=check.  Protein=check.  Fat and carbs=check.  We are good to go :)

For breakfast we picked up eggs, bacon, potatoes, cheese, green and red bell pepper and onion.  This was for breakfast burritos so we also had tortillas and salsa.  I cannot control what everyone else eats but I can certainly control what I eat.  I did not have mine in a burrito.  Instead I just put the eggs with veggies on my plate with some salsa and I thought it would be nice to have one piece of bacon.  Indulgence.  So I did have that but I dramatically saved myself on loads of calories by leaving out the tortilla, cheese, extra bacon and potatoes.  Did you know a regular size tortilla, depending on the brand and flavor, can be almost 200 calories?  Yikes!!  Bacon is about 45 calories PER SLICE - again, depending on brand but most peeps have a minimum of 2-3 slices.  Turkey bacon, such as Jennie-O has 20 calories per slice and is a much lower calorie choice.  Still loaded with nitrates but it still tastes good.

In the fridge was cantelope, honey dew and strawberries for fruit as well as a veggie tray.  Yes, I was the only one who ate it.  Actually, some peeps a few veggies on the first night and ate some of the fruit throughout the trip but no more veggies.  Believe me, it was tempting to add cheese, potatoes and more bacon to my breakfast plate but I kept remembering past trips where I had to do so much damage control after I got back.  I also reminded myself I would be doing some drinking which means extra calories and extra bloating.  Yeehaw for that!  LOL

We made sandwiches on croissants with deli meat (I know, nitrates but it's good and convenient) with thinly sliced deli cheese.  We had mesquite turkey, honey turkey, black forest ham and pepperoni slices.  Each croissant had mainly turkey, a slice of ham and 2 pepperoni slices.  They were loaded with flavor and a much lower calorie option than a sandwich we could get at any of the lake restaurants.  Plus, they were convenient because we just popped 'em in the coolers and brought them with us to eat any time, anywhere.

That night we had carne asada on the grill made into tacos with fresh lettuce, avocado, onions and salsa.  Again, a much better choice than spaghetti, lasagna or pizza and it was less calories than the options we would get at the restaurant.  We had these leftovers for breakfast tacos with eggs.  Soooo good!!  For these tacos we used corn tortillas which, depending on the brand, are 30-60 calories per tortilla.  With it being a smaller size and made of corn rather than flour they are lower cal.

On Saturday we had a few sandwiches left from the day before so we brought those and had pizza.  See?  We still lived a little!  That night we got BBQ from a little place near the house.  That meal did not include veggies except in the cole slaw which had a ton of mayo but life is not about being perfect.  It is about making better choices than we may have another time or than yesterday.

Exercise was limited but we walked a lot the first day, danced a lot the second day and my arm got plenty of working out by holding my drinks.  j/k.  The house was on a hill so I walked up and down in the morning to get a little increase in my heart rate.  It was nothing big but it helped.  If it weren't for dancing and walking I would have probably done a little more.  Maybe next time!

Vacation takes a a little more effort.... OK, a LOT more effort but it is so worth it.  I came back bloated but that is probably from alcohol.  I do not really drink much anymore so when I do I can really tell!

Back to the gym today, which was leg day.  More to come on that as well as a couple delicious recipes coming up!  Meal prep, meal prep.

What do you do on vaca?

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  1. Not only is eating on vacation a possible landmine.....we tend to walk away from our exercise routines!!!!

    1. So true! I did not do as much as I could have/should have. I will be better next time :)