Category Archives: Fit Travel
Fatcation: /fatˈkāSHən/ (n) While on vacation, you do more getting fat than sightseeing.
I just got back from a fatcation, I mean vacation. Vacations can be scary for dieters, but just because you go on vacation doesn’t mean you have to take a fitness vacation too. You can still have a ton of fun, try new foods and “cheat” while not completely losing your mind – and your progress.
Here are 6 tips to help control your vacation eating – and help you bounce back quickly once you get back home.
1. Taste, don’t gorge. More is not always better, but when you are on vacation, it’s fun to taste foods you normally don’t eat. Key word: Taste! Grazing all day is actually better than pigging out a couple of times a day. When you are on vacation, share plates and appetizers so you can taste more, but eat less.
2. Be picky. Just because something is sitting on a plate in front of you doesn’t mean you have to eat it. I actually ordered 3 meals that were a disappointment to me. After I tasted it and discovered it wasn’t what I hoped, I just opted to skip it altogether because it wasn’t worth the calories to me. If you are trying to lose weight, it pays to be picky. If it’s not worth 1-2 hours in the gym to burn off, then it’s not worth eating.
3. Make room for more calories. When I say “make room”, I’m talking about making room for more calories. We typically consume a lot more calories on vacation than we do when we are back in our normal routine at home. However, many times people workout less. If you are watching your weight, account for the extra calories you are eating and try to stay active so you can “afford” the extra calories. Whether you hit the hotel gym, go for a jog, or you just try to walk everywhere instead of taking a cab, increasing your activity while on vacation will help you decrease your chances for vacation weight gain.
4. What happens on vacation stays on vacation. What I mean is, the overeating, drinking, laziness, etc ends when your vacation ends. It’s very easy to let your vacation habits come home with you. Instead, make a mark in the sand and decide to jump right back to your normal routine as soon as you get back. So, as soon as you get home, hit the grocery store and start planning and cooking for the week so you are ready to eat clean again.
5. Forgive yourself. I’ll be honest, I feel fat as a cow right now. That’s how I FEEL. Is that reality? No. I know good and well there is no way I can erase months of training and hard work in just a few days. Can it set me back? Sure, but if I hit it hard (with both diet and training), I’ll be right back where I want to be in no time. That’s the reality. No matter how bad you feel, forgive yourself. Realize, it’s just a vacation. You deserved the break and, often times, you will even hit it HARDER when you get back. Ironically, it’s those kind of cheat days that can make you double your intensity and the drive you need to take your routine to a new level.
6. Set new goals and guidelines. In order to reach a goal, you need to have a goal to strive for. Once you’ve set a goal, you need to plan to get there and that requires setting some rules. Often times people set some pretty stiff rules but they have just as many exceptions as they do rules. For instance, they diet and train hard all the time except for special occasions or weekends. The problem is, many people have a lot of special occasions. Between dinner dates, birthdays, Holidays, events, etc – someone can easily have something that interrupts their routine every week if they are ont careful. My suggestion is to not allow for any cheating for 3-4 weeks so you get a really good powerful start. Then schedule one cheat day. Then go right back at it. Once you get closer to your goal, your cheat meals can be closer together. Setting rules like this keeps you accountable and on schedule to reach your goal.
It’s been so quiet here at PFITblog for the last week. Why? Because I was on VACAAAATION!! Woo Hoo! But now I’m back and I’m ready to type until my fingers bleed!
After our Team Max group (pictured above with me in the center) competed in the NPC Southeast Classic on April 6th, Steve and I jumped on a cruise ship and headed for Mexico. To be honest, I was a little nervous about going on vacation. Not because of the recent Carnival cruise disasters, but because I was afraid of the enormous amount of food I’d be facing and I didn’t want to blow all my hard work. Cruises are known for their never-ending buffets and all-you-can-eat gourmet meals.
On prior cruises, I remember the amazing food and knew I’d be tempted to go crazy. Surprisingly, either my taste buds have changed or my emphasis on food has changed. I honestly missed clean eating and was craving a simple grilled piece of meat and steamed vegetables. Everything was so oily and saucy. The chefs were clearly not concerned about my waistline.
Searching for the “Food High”
Everyone does it – it’s the search for a new “food high”. That’s that moment you’ve tasted something new or more amazing than ever before. The problem is, when you aren’t dieting, that food high can be harder to reach. But, when you eat clean (simple, healthy whole foods), you taste more of the actual food you are eating and rely less on all the sauces and fillers to entertain your tastebuds. As a result, even a little goes a long way. However, if you are eating rich foods all the time, you almost need even richer foods to wow you. It’s almost like a drug. The more you are used to, the more you need to taste to get your food high. However, if you eat clean, it takes very little to excite you.
Although I admit, I had enough chips and salsa to kill someone, the other thing I missed was smaller portions. Since I ate more than I would at home, my belly was constantly fuller. I am not just talking about my stomach, I’m talking about my entire gut. The more you eat, the more you digest. This alone makes you feel fat, even if you don’t gain one pound of fat. I tried to graze all day, but when it came to Mexico, I couldn’t stop eating the guacamole! ha!
After a day exploring Cozumel and tasting every pico, salsa & guac they had on the island, we ended at Three Amigos Restaurant, where we finished the night eating even MORE chips – and posing in this fun Three Amigos prop (left). Left to right: Dawn Borders, Christopher Borders & the last happy face is ME!
Lastly, sometimes it’s just best to say no. I don’t know why we feel the need to try everything. It’s almost like we are scared of missing out. I believe it is healthy to have limitations even when eating out or on vacation. Despite how much food I DID eat, I still had rules and still tried to improve my choices. For instance, I had 1/2 a burger with no bun, I tasted some fries but didn’t finish them. I ordered some spinach stuffed mushrooms but didn’t eat them all. I tasted desserts but only ate what I loved and ditched the rest. Most mornings I skipped over pancakes and greasy breakfast items for egg white omelets, ham and fruit. I still had PLENTY of goodies, and STILL overate, but my “going crazy” still had limits.
So, here I am, back at home sharing my experience with you. Although I am no longer on vacation, part of my vacation came home with me – and it’s time to shed my vacation fat and jump back into my healthier routine.
Check back tomorrow for my “6 Tips to Recover from Fatcation”!
Do you take a vacation from your diet when you go on vacation? Or do you still try to be good?
One of my favorite sayings is “if you fail to plan, plan to fail”, and it is SO true – especially in the fitness world. Proper diet and training takes preparation. And, as soon as you find yourself unprepared, it is easy as pecan pie to go off plan.
Eating on the go and going to the gym takes a certain level of preparation. Your food needs to be portable, and packed up in Tupperware with all the utensils you need. Also, your gym gear has to be loaded up and ready before you head out the door each morning. That means my Live Well 360 bag needs to be packed with all my favorite fitness accessories, healthy food and apparel ahead of time. I suggest packing everything up the night before so you don’t run out of time, and run into excuses to go off plan.
20 Items in my Bag RIGHT NOW!
- Tilapia, a sweet potato & a banana
- Shoes, shorts, tank and socks
- iPad (for watching TV on the elliptical)
- Yurbuds earphones
- Wrist Wraps (PR Wraps)
- iPhone Arm band
- Voss Water bottle
- Impact Energy Gum (new to New York – and now available at our gym!)
- Powder & lipstick (I never use it, but I have it just in case)
- Body Lotion (just in case I am smelly or dry! ha)
- Hair ties & head band
- iPhone charger (gotta have enough juice for my tunes!)
- Hoodie (stays in my bag just in case)
- Wallet (because I don’t carry a purse during the week)
- Speed rope
- Camera (yes, because you neeeever know when you’ll need to make a fitness memory!)
- Bath & Body Works Body spray
- Protein bars (I had Designer Whey bars in mine right now!)
- Macbook Pro (because it goes everywhere I do!)
About My Favorite Bag
I have 2 LiveWell 360 bags. This is the CORE bag. Totally comfy and not bulky. My other bag is the Luxx bag, with a built-in padded laptop case!
Million pockets! Ok, not really ..but a LOT! Yes, I’m TOTALLY organized!
I plan to succeed with a well-packed bag! Take a peak of what I can fit inside!
Built to last.
You can find bags cheaper, but I promise I will still be using my Core bag after you go through your next 3-4 cheapos! If you are a gym rat, it’s worth the investment to buy a gym bag that is perfect, high quality and that won’t let you down!
Have you ever thought about what happens while you sleep? Have you ever thought about how important our sleep is? Not just how good we sleep, but how our body is aligned while sleeping – our pillows, our mattress, our bedding. We may get out of our bed in the morning, but if we don’t have the right bedding, the result of poor bedding may not get out of us.
A little over a week ago I received a Technogel pillow to try out. I have to admit, I was SO ready to get rid of my other pillow. Although I thought my old pillow was comfortable, I felt like it was on it’s last leg and harboring who-knows-what kind of bacteria from years of sleeping on it, sweating on it, and being sick on it. When I thought of it that way, I almost would have rather slept without a pillow at all.
I couldn’t wait to come home and see that box on my doorstep. To be honest, I had no idea what to expect. I’ve always used regular pillows and getting a high-quality pillow like this was something new. I picked up the box, and OMG it was HEAVY! I thought, “what the heck is in this box?!” Then when I opened the box up, I realized the pillows were what were heavy. I was intrigued.
So, I quickly changed sheets and put my new pillows on our bed. I hardly could wait to go to bed (which is totally not like me). When the time came, I crawled in bed and placed my head on the pillow. I wasn’t sure what to think. It was totally unlike anything I ever laid my head on.
Both Steve and I realized we would have to “sleep on it” before we decided if we liked our new pillows or not. We expected it would take a while to get used to, but the more we analyzed the pillows and our sleeping patterns we learned something.
The Technogel pillow was only about 5 1/2 inches tall, compared to my 7-8 inch fluffy pillow I was used to. Then it hit me, my pillow was fluffy, but once I lay my big head on it, it sunk right in. I wondered how the two compared once my head was resting on it. So I decided to do my own little test.
I took a big container of protein (go figure haha) and placed it on my new Technogel pillow to see how much it sunk in compared to my other pillow. Of course my other pillow caved right in, but the Technogel pillow barely budged.
Every night I went to sleep I’d think about how I was liking my pillow. Although I missed my fluffy pillow, I started to realize that many of my weird sleeping patterns were learned behavior I developed to add support to my pillow. For instance, placing my hand under the pillow or pushing the sides of the pillow up to support my neck and head. I then realized my old pillow wasn’t ideal at all – I was making it ideal by shaping it into the object I needed to get a good night sleep.
So, as I lay in bed with my head on the new pillow, realizing it needed no adjustments to give me the same support. Although it was flatter, it was actaully thicker than my old pillow when I had my head on it. It curved just right and, quite honestly, my body had no clue what to do now that it didn’t have the job of molding the fluffy object all night.
Sleep on This
At first, I admit I still wasn’t sure if I liked it or not. I had years of bad sleeping habits to erase. It did take getting used to, but every night I like it more and more – and I really believe it is better for me. Soft and cushy is not always healthy. As I age, I realize my body needs more support and I need to invest more in my physical health – not just my outer appearance and being “comfy”. I need to be healthy.
I realized the same thing with my tennis shoes recently. Soft and cushy feeling shoes were not necessarily what my feet needed, but I had never thought of that same principle applying to my bedding – and I sure sleep a lot more than I run!
My old pillow was $59. This new one was $100 more, but isn’t my head and neck worth the extra $100? Duh! Funny how I don’t blink an eye on investing money in putting the right shoes on our feet, but I have never thought about how important it is to protect my neck and head? What a revelation! I guess I learn something new every day!
Sleep Tips from Technogel
1. Stick to a regular sleeping routine.
2. Limit other activities in the bedroom other than sleeping and rest
3. Don’t overeat before bedtime
4. Don’t exercise at least 3 hours before bedtime
5. Stretch before you go to bed to loosen tight muscles and relax the body
6. Limit naps to 20 minutes or less
Get more tips from Technogel
Learn more about Technogel pillows.
FitFluential LLC compensated me for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Although our gym rocked, our workouts were really pretty simple and could be done almost anywhere. Steve shares his Cardio and Abs Hotel Workout he did this weekend, which required little equipment or time.
FitFluential LLC compensated me for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.