How to Eat Healthy on Vacation Without Missing Out

Everyone looks forward to vacation. When that time comes around each year, you start counting down the days until you can switch off and take a well-deserved break. The only problem is that, when vacation time hits, you may feel like you lose your grasp on your exercise routine and diet. You have been working hard to achieve your goals all year only to be thrown off by a week-long vacation. Well, it does not have to be that way. The good news is that you can still enjoy amazing food and experiences while staying on track with your health goals. Keep reading to for tips on how to eat healthy on vacation and stick to your wellness goals. 

Staying Motivated to Eat Healthy on Vacation

If you have ever been on vacation at an all-inclusive holiday village, you will be aware of the temptations to stray from your wellness habits. It’s not an exaggeration to say that you can end up gaining seven pounds in seven days. When you’re overindulging daily on delicious foods and not moving much, things can quickly add up. Instead of your usual workout routine and trail mix snack, you end up indulging in a few platefulls of desserts while sipping on a strawberry daiquiri. 

What I Eat In A Day | How To Be Healthy On Vacation – Maggie MacDonald

That’s not to say you shouldn’t loosen the reins a little when on vacation. You can still enjoy every minute of your holiday while making healthy choices and avoiding unwanted vacation weight gain. By marking smart choices and staying active, you can avoid feeling like an overfed couch potato by the middle of your trip. After all, you want to have the energy to explore and go sightseeing. Selecting the right foods and staying active are crucial to sticking to your goals and making the most out of your vacation. 

6 Tips and Tricks: How to Eat Healthy on Vacation 

Eating healthy on vacation doesn’t need to be a massive challenge. With a few simple tricks and switches, you can make a big impact on your vacation diet. You’ll be happy to hear that cocktails are included. If you haven’t already, start planning your next vacation, and with a few little tweaks, you can keep to your goals and healthy eating habits. 

Exercise in the Morning

Sneak in exercise where you can. This doesn’t need to be an intense weight lifting session. Take a walk with your partner or friends. Try to exercise early in the morning so that you have the rest of the day to enjoy activities, fun, and food. 

Multiethnic couple jogging in the city at early morning with sunrise as part of how to eat healthy on vacation.
Try To Exercise Early In The Morning So That You Have The Rest Of The Day To Enjoy Activities, Fun, And Food (Image Source: Shutterstock)

It can be tough to get in your standard workout routine while traveling, so go for something that you can do on the move. HIIT workouts are a great choice for a quick vacation sweat session. High-intensity interval training can get your heart pumping and body burning fat in thirty minutes, which is perfect for a morning workout. 

If you’re not into HIIT, you might consider investing in some travel workout equipment. Jump ropes and fitness bands are super light and portable. You can do a quick workout in your hotel room, by the pool, or on the beach. 

Start Your Meals with Greens or Fruit

Eating healthily on vacation isn’t about deprivation. It’s not about cutting out certain food groups. It’s about making smart choices and eating in moderation. A great tip is to start your meals with greens or fruit. It sounds super simple, but it will fill you so you will be less likely to overeat on richer foods. Since you won’t be so hungry, you will be less likely to add every single item at the buffet to your plate.

Eating healthy food sitting in the beautiful interior with green flowers.
It’s About Making Smart Choices And Eating In Moderation (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Remember that your eyes tend to be bigger than your stomach. With this in mind, don’t overfill your plate. Chances are that you will continue to finish off the plate, even if you’re no longer hungry. Moderate your portions; you can always go for a second serving if you’re still hungry. 

Limit Your Sugary Drinks

Don’t be afraid to eat or drink; you’re on vacation, after all. A holiday tends to be the time to enjoy a gin and tonic (or three). You can still enjoy a buzz. The real calorie killer is sugary drinks. Try mixers like sodas or tonics. This will save you a ton of calories over your trip. 

In general, Americans consume 200 more calories a day just from sugary drinks. That’s four times the amount consumed in 1965. There is a growing body of evidence linking sugary drinks to the obesity and diabetes pandemics. Choosing zero-calorie soda, water, or tonic over sugary drinks is one of the best things you can do on vacation to stay on track with healthy eating. 

Stay Hydrated

It’s really easy to get dehydrated when traveling. When you’re out of your standard routine, you can forget to hydrate and even mistake thirst for hunger. Proper hydration benefits your sleep, mood, and cognition. Bring a travel-friendly and portable water bottle on vacation so that you can fill up wherever you are. This helps you to stay hydrated on the go.

Woman drinking water after jogging.
Proper Hydration Benefits Your Sleep, Mood, And Cognition (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Don’t Forget to Share

If you’re on vacation with friends or family, sharing food is a great experience. Instead of overindulging on everything you fancy on the menu, order a few different dishes and share the experience. This gives you a chance to try lots of foods without eating the whole thing yourself. 

Pack Healthy Snacks

On your first vacation day, visit a local market to stock up on healthy snacks. Choose things like dried fruit, seeds, and nuts that you can put in a backpack for the day. That way, you can have a snack whenever hunger strikes to help curb your appetite and give you a healthy boost of energy. Pre-plan healthy snacks for airport and travel days where healthy options are more likely to be limited. 

Get Back on Track and Focus on Your Healthy Eating Goals After Vacation

It’s completely normal to indulge on vacation. You’re not following your regular workout routine, and your diet can go out the window. If you stray from your wellness goals while on vacation, don’t beat yourself up. If you had a few days where you overindulged, that’s okay. Don’t let one vacation slow you down. Enjoy your time away, try to make smart eating choices, and stay active.

How To Stay In Shape On Holiday – Mike Thurston

Your long-term fitness goals are precisely that: long-term. Don’t feel guilty about eating delicious vacation food. If you feel sluggish or bloated after your trip, don’t weigh yourself immediately. The scale will tell you what you already know. Instead, kickstart your healthy eating and get back to your workout schedule. 

You’re on vacation, so go ahead and enjoy that dessert. Savor each bite slowly and remember that portion size counts. Try to stay active at every chance you get, and integrate exercise into your day. Instead of getting a cab, walk to your next destination. Your vacation is a time to disconnect, reflect, and recharge. But there’s no need to sway from your healthy eating goals. Enjoy your time off and hit the ground running when you get back to home turf.