Staying healthy while travelling can be extremely difficult. Between stressing over catching flights, planning the best itineraries and having to catch sunrise/sunset… thinking about eating right is just so easy to forget about. Usually we’ll be rushing through an airport and we’ll just grab whatever sorry-looking sandwich is sitting out at the café on our way to our gate. Or we’ll be so tired from a day of shooting that we stuff our faces with the greasiest, most unhealthy food from a drive-thru just so we can make it home to bed. It’s not an aspect of our lives that I’m super proud of and honestly, the consequences of it all has shown up not only through my energy levels, but on my waistline.
Picking up good eating habits in Bali
At the beginning of this year we spent a good chunk of time in Southeast Asia… on the island of Bali, specifically. What we discovered by being immersed in a culture where overconsumption of meat is rare (mostly because the animals themselves are rare) really forced us to change our diet and the results were amazing. By switching to a plant-based diet for almost 4 weeks I felt better than I had ever felt and it was surprising how quickly I felt the change.
Even after arriving home from Bali, we continued our education and research into vegan diets and reached a very profound realization. How could we claim to love the planet and dedicate our lives to capturing its beauty when at the same time we were supporting the industries that were most damaging to it? How could we be promoting this “healthy, active, outdoor lifestyle” when we were just filling our bodies with carcinogens from meat products, not knowing half the ingredients in the food we were consuming and contributing to global warming?
I’ll be the first to admit that being vegan was super difficult – it felt like most of my time & energy went into either looking for vegan options or carefully planning my next meal. Also… snacking. Even though I had tons of energy and felt feather light, I was ALWAYS hungry. Maybe hungry isn’t even the right word… maybe it was just unsatisfied. Either way, the transition was hard and it was even harder with our hectic schedules.
7 Healthy habits for travel
There are a few things we’ve adopted since coming home and adjusting our diet, and they’re tips that we’ve incorporated into our travel now as well. These things have made me feel happier, healthier and overall proud of my choices.
(1) Drinking lots of water.
Your body often perceives thirst as hunger. Drinking more water, frequently throughout the day will curb any cravings you might feel.
(2) Eat smaller meals, more often.
Healthy snacks play a big part in this, especially since we’re often on the go in the mountains. I’m seeing new products pop up every day that really embody healthy living and No Cow is one of those. These lactose-free, low-sugar, all-natural-ingredient energy bars have been my go to healthy energy boost over the last few weeks.
(3) Optimize your sleeping schedule.
It can be a nightmare with travel, but do what you can to get the best sleep that you can. This includes utilizing the “Night Shift” on your smartphone (or f.lux on your laptop) which turns the harsh blue light into a soft orange one so your brain can start producing melatonin about an hour before bed.
Choose your outfit for the next day the night before to save time in the morning. If you brew coffee, set it on a timer so that you can wake up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee. Choose a subtle, happy alarm rather than a loud, harsh one to wake you up gently and put you in a better mood.
(4) Make fewer decisions.
Decision fatigue is a real thing. Over the course of the day we make hundreds of decisions and by the end of the day your brain gets less effective at choosing what’s best. This is why it sometimes seems easier to just reach for a takeout menu or unhealthy, “easy” options. Meal prep and planning your meals for the week can help with this. At home, we’ve started using meal subscription services such as Chef’s Plate so that we make our decisions about food once at the beginning of the week and just wait for the box with the recipes/ingredients to show up.
With travel, only bringing a few items of clothing can save time and energy thinking about what to wear, and it’ll reduce the weight you’re carrying too!
(5) Eat plenty of fruit
Keep your vitamin levels and energy up by eating plenty of fruit while you travel. Tropical countries like Indonesia have abundant fruit and veg so there’s really no excuse! Make sure you eat fruit you can peel though and avoid things that can be contaminated by dirty water.
(6) Carry a travel sized hand sanitizer and tissues.
You can never be too careful when travelling and it’s so easy to pick up bugs if you’re not keeping your hands clean. Tissues are a great thing to keep with you because you never know when you might get caught short! Many countries don’t use the western style of toilet or toilet paper, so bringing your own can be a lifesaver!
(7) Wear sunscreen!
Sure, you might have skin that tans or doesn’t burn, but baking in the sun can be extremely harmful in the long run, not to mention bad for your skin! Bringing sunscreen along and actually using it (something I’m guilty of forgetting sometimes) is a really good idea.
Hope these quick tips were useful!
(This post was sponsored by No Cow, however all opinions expressed are our own)