If you’re on holiday, I think you can safely unclench for a bit and have a few cocktails and a slice of chocolate cake every now and then because god damn it, that’s what holidays are for. There’s not a whole lot of damage that you can do in a week or two so just relax and eat like a normal person. However if you’re planning on travelling the word for an extended period of time or if you fly interstate or internationally for work it can be a bit of a strain on the old waistband if you never say no to cheeky treats. Here are a few tips to keep your health in check while you’re away from home. 

How To Stick To Your Diet While Traveling 

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Ditch The Hotel Breakfasts

If you’re away for a work conference and you have a giant ham and cheese croissant for breakfast every morning with a freshly squeezed orange and a few slices of bacon you’ve just had a days worth of calories in one meal. The best option is to buy some cereal, fruit, low-fat yogurt or pre-mixed smoothies from a local supermarket and have a breakfast that’s similar to the ones you have at home. You can always fit a few tubs of yogurt and a banana in a tiny bar fridge and a tea-cup makes a nifty little breakfast bowl. Easy.

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Don’t Drink on Weeknights

If you don’t do it while you’re at home, don’t do it while you’re away. Have a glass of wine at a function if you feel like it but hitting the turps hard every time you have a hotel room with a bar tab will be bad for your head and your waist line… and possibly your career.

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Pack Snacks

Protein bars, little packs of dried fruit and nuts, fresh fruit or a boiled egg are all excellent and very portable snacks to carry to conferences. If you pre-prepare little nibbles to stow away in your handbag it will stop you from snacking on nasty conference cakes and slices and keep you alert and awake for the day. It’ll also stop you gaining conference kgs on foods that are so not worth it, like cold quiches and stale biscuits.

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Book Serviced Apartments

Hotel rooms are the devil when it comes to healthy eating. Often you can’t even make yourself a piece of toast, so you’re forced to eat greasy chinese takeaway or whatever unhealthy snacks you can find at the local 7 Eleven. Try to book a serviced apartment with a kitchenette. That way you can boil an egg, make some toast or even throw together a simple salad so you can at least eat a few decent meals in between all your conference socialising. 

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Make Sensible Choices When Dining Out

By the time you’ve had a few too many white bread conference sandwiches and several pieces of caramel slice you’ve already upped the calories you would normally eat by about 1000. If you then order a giant burger with a side of fries and a pint of beer for dinner you’ve eaten a few days worth of calories in just a few hours. The best thing to do is to adopt the 80/20 attitude. Eat as best as you can 80% of the time and let yourself have a few treats 20% of the time and maybe hit the running program or yoga studio a little harder when you get home. Just play the weighing game. Would you rather have a few tasty macarons with your afternoon cup of tea? Or a glass of red with dinner? Choose one, not both. Easy. 

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Keep Up With Your Exercise Routine

Even just a short session on the hotel treadmill or a quick spin around the streets of what ever city you’re in will do you the world of good. It will up your metabolic rate for the day meaning that your body is in good shape to cope with extra conference calories and you’ll feel amazing knowing that you’ve kept up your fitness routine.
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Stop Treating Work Trips As Special Occasions

When I started travelling regularly for work and writing conferences I would splurge every time I went anywhere. Champagne on the plane, cheese board at the hotel, fancy dinner that’s being sponsored by a big brand – and I would eat all the things. It took a few months of constant travel and several pairs of too tight pants before I realised that conference calories are actually real and that what goes in my mouth on conferences, ends up on my midsection just like all the other calories. It’s not the last hotel you’re going to stay in, it’s not the last free drink you’re going to get and it’s not the only time a French pastry master is going to give you a double chocolate extra chin. Just choose your treats and eat sensibly. Simple.


Do you travel a lot for work? What are your tips for staying in shape when free food and alcohol are in abundance?