Some people say losing weight and traveling are diametrically opposed. I beg to differ! I lost over 170 lbs ins a year and a half while traveling on a weekly basis. This is how I did it:
- Eat at the concierge lounge for breakfast – When you travel often, you normally get access to a concierge lounge. You can use this access to your advantage if you make the correct choices. I love Sheraton and SPG but other hotels have similar offerings. Here is the approach. For breakfast, fill up on lean protein (hard-boiled eggs, non fat Greek yogurt, etc.), oatmeal and fruit. Also grab at least two bananas and two apples for your snacks throughout the day. Lastly, stay hydrated by taking a few bottled waters. 9 times out of 10 when you are hungry it is just a substitution for being thirsty!
- Walk to work. No Uber for me! Unless it is pouring or 10 below (sometimes the case in the Midwest), I walk to work. I also pick a hotel about a mile away so you get 2 miles in no matter what. This at least gets you up and going. Remember to bring a book on tape (Podcasts and Overdrive if you are a member of a library are free!) or time your walk with a work call. It gets you outside and you barely notice the activity. One other trick in DesMoines. Take the Skywalk if it is cold. It is indoors and actually can make you sweat if it is cold outside!
- Plan your lunch and order it up-front. When we are traveling for work, we are often pressed for time at lunch. Client meetings and working through lunch is often the case. When you know that is going to happen, either order lunch in advance and track your calories or bring a low cal lunch with you that you pick up on your morning walk. When in one city, for example, I order a healthy soup such as Chicken Noodle or Turkey Chili on an app from Zoup. I then pick it up when ready. It gives me a quick 10 minute break on my trip to pick it up and burns the calories that I am about to eat on the walk! If you are even more pressed, you can eat from a vending machine but be careful! My go to’s are Peanuts, Peanut butter crackers, and the chicken salad with crackers.
- Walk and meet clients. Sometimes you are hard pressed to get your assignment done and you become what I call a “work potato”. That means you sit at your desk and crank out the next deliverable without getting up and walking to your client to learn what they truly want. Walking the length of the hall to see your client and to understand their needs can better burn calories and also save you time! Instead of guessing your client requirements, you can talk to them.
- Eat at the concierge for dinner. This is the bookend to number 1. Most concierge places provide appetizers, vegetables, cheese, and a desert for dinner. I load up on the vegetables, each an appetizer or two and get an ounce of cheese. I skip the desert normally and opt for a banana instead. This routine is a lot less calories than going to have a steak on the company dime. Your boss and body will love you for it!
- Walk before Drinking – A long day out of town and at work usually deserves a beer if not stronger. But you cannot drink without a plan to burn it off. Most cities either have a trail near beer or sidewalks to get to it. I check out a different brewery within a mile and plan a walk for my reward! Here is me walking past the Maxwell’s Silver Hammer in Columbus en-route to my evening beer!
- Break up the day – When you are out of town, you are not pressed normally with the activities that may take time at home. You usually can leave after your last client meeting, exercise, and then get another 2-3 hours of needed work done. Plan accordingly to get some exercise so you are even more productive.
- SLEEP – Usually when working out of town, you get to stay in a hotel near your work. Even though you may be walking to your work, I have found that it is a lot less time to get to work, allowing more time for sleep, even with a tough work schedule. Also, you are eating at the concierge where the food is already prepared!
- Weight Watchers – I never miss a meeting even if I need to stay in town for work over the weekend! I have attended my weekly meetings in Columbus, Phoenix, Houston, Salt Lake City and other cities while out of town. Going to a meeting in another town is always invigorating!
Working out of town does not mean you have to gain weight. It actually is an opportunity to shed more or keep fit. If I did it, you can do! Life is fun and attractive, when you are traveling and stay active!