If you have done much business travel, you know that it can be pretty easy to eat unhealthy, skip exercising and put on weight. Like the joke that in college you had the ‘Freshman 15’ where you gained 15lbs your freshman year, employees at my first company had a joke for people who newly started that they had the ‘Travel 15’ where they gained 15lbs in their first year of traveling.
It can be easy to get out of shape and unhealthy when traveling but it can be avoided, starting with these Tips for Staying Healthy on the Road.
Tips for Staying Healthy on the Road
1. Avoid Fast Food
I know that sometimes if you want to eat at all you have to get something quick, either in between flights or running to catch a meeting, and you have to get something fast. So fast food is what you resort to. For times when you have any other option, don’t choose fast food.
2. Take the Stairs
Most of the hotels that I stay in outside of city centers are only 4 stories tall, yet to go up one or two floors, I see people taking the elevator. Taking the stairs won’t turn you into a triathlete but it will get your legs working a little bit.
3. Avoid Fried Food
You don’t have to only eat salads, but when eating out for many meals in a week, fried foods can lead to many health problems.
4. Don’t order the extra appetizer (even if it is someone else paying for it)
It can be tempting to splurge on meals and get some extra appetizers when it is on someone else’s dime. But studies show the more food that is given to you, the more you eat. And the more food that you eat, the more weight you could put on. With the average restaurant portion size these days, you likely already have enough food on your plate. Being on a Per diem expense reimburse structure can help avoid this.
5. Take leftovers to go, and eat them the next day
If you have too much food to eat for a meal, get it boxed up and eat the rest of it the following day. Most hotels have fridges in the room and microwaves available for guests to use. You will eat less this way. Plus, if you are per diem, it is two meals for the price of one.
If your hotel ‘gym’ is dismal, with a broken treadmill, a squeaky elliptical, and mismatched free weights, that doesn’t mean you can’t exercise. Go for a walk, do some sit-ups or push-ups in your room, walk to dinner. Anything to get you up and active will help.
Summary – Tips for staying Healthy on the Road
These tips for staying healthy on the road won’t prepare you for your first marathon, but thinking about them as you travel will help prevent you from gaining the ‘Travel 15’.