During my first two years at my job, I was a consultant and traveled almost every week for a solid two years. I was not really expecting the travel component when I took the job; most of the consultants at our firm stay in New York, but I was given the opportunity and so I took it. I covered the Southeast and had the chance to visit so many places that I never would have seen otherwise. Although the travel was exhausting and I was ready to be done after two years, I wouldn’t change my decision to do it.
When I first started traveling, I didn’t really know how to stay healthy while on the road. It was really hard. Unlike some other consultants, I was in a different place every week, staying at various hotels, seeing new clients, and basically had a very unpredictable schedule.
Overtime, I started learning what worked for me, and gradually became pretty darn good at figuring out how to travel while maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It never got easy, but it got easier.
So when it came time for our trip to Greece/Turkey, I quickly took the role of making sure we had some good travel snacks for our long flights and trip. I’d love to share with you some tips and tricks that I have picked up along the way about good things to have in your bag when you head to 10,000 feet.
Almonds– I have to start here. Whether you are going to class, standing in line at the DMV, or boarding a plane, almonds are the best travel snack. They are so easy to transport, they have fat and protein, and they actually can fill you up if you really need them. I almost always have almonds in my bag, no matter what!
Fresh Veggies for Travel Day- Obviously fresh veggies don’t last very long, but I got in the habit of bringing them for the day that I traveled. Airplane/airport/hotel food can get old really really fast, especially if you are someone who is used to having fresh food all the time. I started packing some cut up carrots, pepper, or cucumber for the day that I traveled. It feels so refreshing to whip them out while you are mid-flight and craving something fresh. We ate the entire bag of carrots on our long flight over to Athens and they really hit the spot.
Fruit– Similar to the veggies, it’s nice to have fruit for its freshness. Fruit can last longer than veggies, so pack some apples, a banana, some oranges, whatever you have. They are a great snack while on the road, and you can easily transport them anywhere.
Tea Bags- I am constantly cold. Part of traveling is being in varying temperatures that you can’t control. Hot hotel rooms (the WORST), freezing cold airplanes, cold airports, etc. I love always having tea bags on me so that I can ask the flight attendant for cups of hot water and can actually add my own good tea instead of whatever the airline has on hand. This is especially good if you are traveling at night and want decaf tea; most airlines won’t have any decaf tea so you can be prepared with your own. I also frequently used the little coffee/tea machine in hotel rooms and would brew some tea while I was doing work at night or just hanging out. It’s nice to have an assortment so that you can choose whatever you are in the mood for, so I usually bring several kinds. Not to mention how transportable tea bags are. They take up hardly any weight and can fit anywhere.
Granola Bars/Granola- I’m not a huge fan of granola bars or processed snacks while I am at home, but they definitely come in handy if you are in a bind on the road. I like to pick out a few that are less processed such as the Gnu bars or Bumble Bars (my favorite!). In this case, I brought two Odwalla bars that I got from the Healthy Living Summit plus two small single portion bags of Love Grown Granola. My friends and I loved all of these and they definitely came in handy during a layover and fed three very tired and cranky girls!
Single Serve Coffee Pouches- We didn’t end up using these, but I have used them on other trips. Similar to the tea bags, it’s nice to be able to have Starbucks in your hotel room if you’d like. These days, you don’t really go anywhere without a local Starbucks that you can just go and get a real cup of coffee at, but it’s still nice knowing you have these if needed.
Dark Chocolate- You know those nights when you just want a little piece of chocolate after dinner? Or after lunch? Well, when you are at home that is easy. You just break off a piece of dark chocolate that you have on hand. On the road though, where are you going to get that from? Easy! Just bring a bar with you and it’s there for you when those chocolate cravings get ya. This bar actually made it through almost our entire trip, in part because it is super dark chocolate and neither of my friends liked it. I am a weirdo who LOVES really really dark chocolate. Anyway, I always like having one of these on hand for whenever I want a bite of dessert but don’t want to go buy a huge thing of it.
And those are my tips! From a consultant who has traveled extensively, these are some of the little tricks I have learned to help me stay healthy. Not only do all of these items help me stay healthy, but it just feels so nice to have some pieces of home on your trip. When you pull out that tea bag from your kitchen, or that apple that you picked up at your local market, or those carrot sticks that you cut in your own apartment, it feels comforting to have little pieces of home with you while you are away.
Please let me know if there are other snacks you like to keep on hand for when you travel! I’d love to hear.