Plan Your Travel Meals

Whether you’re going to the south of France, South America or South Dakota, traveling almost always means extra eating – which may mean extra pounds.

There are two reasons for this. One is that – whether traveling for business for pleasure – you’re susceptible to an almost overwhelming array of scrumptious choices, out-of-the-way three-star restaurants, local festivals, and roadside eateries. Over laden buffets and exotic snacks further sabotage your best weight-maintaining efforts.

The second travel trap in more subtle, and therefore more dangerous. On many vacation plans, you pay for food whether or not you eat it. And business trips are famous for the “expense account” syndrome – exuberant repasts where the company picks up the tab. Both bring on the “it’s-paid-for-so-I-might-as-well-eat-it” syndrome which, in turn, brings on extra pounds.

What’s the solution to the traveler’s eating dilemma? Anticipating and planning your trip. With just a bit of thinking ahead, you can sample the locale fare, meet your quota of business meals, dine with friends at the bistro and still maintain your weight – even lose weight.

You can go to my website at www.ConquerFood.com for some tips or email me with questions directly at Caryl@ConquerFood.com.

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Staying Lean During The Summer Months

Just because you’re on vacation or taking long weekends in flip flips, t-shirts, and shorts, is no reason to leave your eating habits at home. Concentrate on simple things that really matter like the company of others and healthy delicious meals. You can fill up on the ambiance, not the food.

  1. Share a meal. Consider ordering one appetizer & one entrée to share. You may think its not going to be enough but you will realize afterwards it was just fine.
  2. Brown-Bag it. Control portion size by planning ahead.
  3. Buy the lunch special. Feel free to order it but do take home some of it for another meal (or two).
  4. Soup’s on. Sip it.
  5. Take a walk. If you have time to walk….walk.
  6. Consider taking the stairs up one flight or down two.
  7. Reward yourself for staying on your Program. Put into a jar the money you would have spent for extra food and spend it on something that will last. 
  8. Be creative. Meet at a museum rather than a restaurant.
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Cruise Ships and Resorts

Going on a cruise or all-inclusive resort? The-unlimited-quantity-all-you-can-eat-comes-with-the-room-vacation whether on a cruise ship or at a resort — is an American classic experience but don’t forget “I want to weigh ____ pounds!” The everything-included vacation is here to challenge you.

You can assume there will be many more items than you normally serve yourself, and you can assume the portion size and unlimited choices will also be greater than you’d ever purchase or prepare when at home.

You cannot possibly eat it all, it is not the last meal you’ll ever eat, and just because the hotel promotes unlimited everything is no reason to have six desserts and three entrees.

Unlimited portions equal an unlimited body.

Know that a consequence comes with every extra mouthful of food.

If you make good choices you would have sampled a variety of different foods and won’t have gained any weight. You might even lose a few pounds on your trip. Go to www.conquerfood.com for some tips.

Bon Voyage!

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Taking in the Waters

Water rehydrates the body, moisturizes the skin, and gives you a general sense of well-being. It’s also a terrific boon to the weightconscious, at home or away. Water with meals cleanses your palate, aids digestion and counteract the adverse effect of dehydration from travel and sun. Get a water bottle and keep it in your office, car, boat, room or cabin. Carry a bottle in your tote or gym bag. Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water each day; at least one glass with every meal, whether you have an additional beverage or not. Sip. Don’t gulp.

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Two Extremes

Do you wonder, what is the greatest amount of food you can eat and not gain weight? Do you put yourself at risk with all-you-can-eat restaurants, big portions, and frequent eating encounters? Do you bring junk food into the home for the kids and end up eating it yourself? Do you end up stuffed, bloated, sometimes nauseous, sick to your stomach, and certainly uncomfortable? The frenzy eventually passes, and the ferocity subsides. You might feel remorse. The next day you go to the other extreme. Then you wonder what is the smallest amount I can eat without feeling deprived and without passing out in the street? So you eat two peanuts, some 40-calorie bread, celery and carrots, a bite of this and a swallow of that. Yet you’re still hungry. You filled up your body but never nourished it. So you want more. And more. And more. You might feel physically full but remain emotionally and nutritionally empty. Do you see yourself in either extreme? It is an example of all or nothing thinking. Both extremes, are rituals of the food addict, designed to distract. You get so busy with the ritual, so great is your preoccupation with doing all the steps in each ritual, you don’t have time to feel the feelings that caused you to seek distraction in the first place. You need to change your thinking.

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Be Kind To Yourself

Create your own positive voice. Think of the reasons you want to reach your weight loss goal (or any goal), not the reasons you don’t want to remain at your present weight. Tell friends how good you feel, rather than reliving your less-than perfect efforts. Give importance to the good stuff. Let go of all else. Try to monitor your negative, unrealistic thinking. How many times you give yourself credit for doing something positive – “I ate only when I was hungry the entire week” – to take it away by adding, “. . . except for Thursday night when I worked late and had three slices of pizza?” It is not a good habit of thought to give one evening of pizza the same weight as six days of staying on your Program. Thinking realistically and positively may be tricky at the beginning because you may have been thinking unrealistically and negatively. It takes practice and perseverance to change your attitude, but you will succeed. Perhaps not immediately but one baby-step at a time. If you believe you can, you can. Napolean Hill said, “If you can conceive it, and believe it, you can achieve it.”

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Staying Lean During Lean Times

Just because money is tight, your clothes don’t have to be. Today’s more conservative mood gives you an opportunity to concentrate on simple things that really matter – like the company of others and a healthy, delicious meal. Fill up on the ambience not the food.

  • Share a meal. Consider ordering one appetizer & one entrée to share. You may think its not going to be enough but you will realize afterwards it was just fine.
  • Brown-Bag it. Save money while controlling portion size by planning ahead.
  • Buy the lunch special. Feel free to order it but take home some of it to make it into another meal (or two).
  • Have soup. If you see soup on the menu order it. It’s cheap, delicious and filling.
  • Take a walk and save money. If you have time to walk then walk.
  • Consider taking the stairs. Go up one flight or down two.
  • Reward yourself. Put the money you saved into a jar and spend it on something that will last. 
  • Be creative. Meet at a museum rather than a restaurant.
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Do You Eat Too Quickly?

Are you a speed eater? This could be a plus if you’re a contestant at the Nathan’s Fourth of July competitive eating contest in Coney Island. If you’re trying to reach your weight loss goal, slowing down while eating is worth achieving.

Take this quiz:
– Do you cut nickel-sized bites of food?
– Is each bite chewed before swallowing?
– Is mouth empty before inserting more food?
– Are utensils put down between bites?
– Are you mindful when eating?
– Do you sip water between bites of food?

If you answered no to most of these questions, you’re most likely eating more than you need. By slowing down while eating, you’ll feel signals of satiation long before you’ve finished everything on your plate.

Be consistent with your efforts and you’ll reach your weight loss goal.

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Travel Eating – Before, During, After

Before
When you’re planning a trip, you plan the clothes, airline, hotel, and even some tours you want to take but you probably don’t plan your eating. The problem with most vacations is that people want to sleep late and perhaps leave the rigid schedule at home. If that translates into leaving all good habits back at home, rethink your thinking. You want to weigh (goal) pounds 365 days a year, not just when it’s convenient. Carry some food supplies in case your plane doesn’t take off on time and you’re stuck with the fatty choices at the airport. Plastic bags with portions of miniature shredded wheat might be helpful.
During
If you make every food foray away from your home into an exception to the rule, you’ll end up with more exceptions and no rules. Whatever you’re doing to lose and/or maintain your weight while at home, you want to do while on vacation. If you eat slowly at home (put utensils down between bites, make sure mouth is empty before inserting more food), do the same thing when away. Plan ahead the content of food so when the bread or salad or starch arrives, you can wave it away and concentrate on your entrée, drink, or dessert.
After
Acknowledge that what you ate was enough. Think about how your plan was achieved. And most of all, that your clothes are looser and you feel good about yourself. More food is not better nor is overeating to the point of discomfort. You’ll only feel remorse. Eat the right amount. Push your plate an inch or two to end a meal. And realize that planning ahead feels great.

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Mindful Eating

If you are a compulsive overeater, a binge eater, or a food addict, there are some things you can do.

1.Set a goal. Rather than waiting, start now and decide how much you would like to weigh.

2.Decide whether you want to lose weight, gain weight or stay the same weight. Every time food is offered, proffered and pushed, think: I want to weigh ______ next month. I can do it!

3.Plan ahead. In that way, if something comes your way you’ll know if it was part of your plan or if it was a visual, situational or circumstantial stimulus to eat. Then you can decide if you are really hungry.

4.Eat with utensils. No finger foods. It makes it too easy to eat more than you had intended to.

5.Cut each bite of food to the size of a nickel or dime. Anything bigger leads to shoveling not savoring.

6.Put utensils down between bites of food. Fill up on ambiance and conversation.

7.Drink water between bites of food. Sip, don’t gulp.

8.Make sure mouth is empty before inserting more food. The slower you eat the more memorable and enjoyable the meal (and after the meal) will be.

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