Road Trip! Eating Well and Staying Active on your Driving Vacation
Are you taking a road trip this summer? If so, of course, you'll fill your tank and plan your route. But what about fueling your family during your journey? Eat well and stay active on the road with tips like these:
Map Out Healthy On-the-Road Munchies
Pack some healthy foods so you don't have to rely on vending machines, convenience stores, or fast food drive-thrus for meals and snacks. Packing your own is fun because you can enjoy a picnic at a rest stop, park or playground where the kids can burn off some energy while you relax. Plus, you'll save time and money, too!
Stock up on travel-friendly options like these at your local supermarket:
No refrigeration required. Peanut butter sandwiches on whole-grain bread, single-serving cans of water-packed tuna, fruits and vegetables, nuts, sturdy fresh fruits like apples, oranges and bananas, dried fruit, whole-grain crackers, whole-wheat pretzels, small boxes of ready-to-eat whole-grain cereal, granola bars, and plain popcorn provide premium fuel. To curb mindless munching, put individual servings of snacks like nuts and crackers into snack-size plastic bags.
In the cooler. Bring an insulated cooler to expand your healthy food options. Pack sandwiches made on whole-grain bread with fillings like lean beef, turkey, or reduced-fat cheese, light mayo, mustard and lots of veggies. Stop at the supermarket for containers of cut-up veggies and fruit salad. Toss in some low-fat yogurt cups and reduced-fat cheese sticks. Bottled water, 100% fruit juice boxes, and single serving bottles of reduced-sodium tomato juice and fat-free milk make great thirst-quenchers.
Surround cooler foods with ice or frozen gel packs to keep them chilled and help minimize risk of food-borne illness.
In-room breakfasts. Before you bunk down for the night, hit the local supermarket for quick and healthy breakfast options. Buy whole-grain bagels, a jar of peanut butter and fresh fruit that can stay at room temperature. If you have a fridge, pick up low-fat yogurt and fruit salad, or whole-grain cereal and fat-free milk. Or, bring packs of instant oatmeal—just add hot water from your room's coffee maker, stir in some raisins and chopped walnuts, and enjoy!
Stay on the Move
When you travel long distances by car, exercise often falls by the wayside. But squeezing in some physical activity not only helps keep you healthy, it adds fun to your trip, too.
Moving plans. Pack sneakers, workout wear, and a bathing suit. Choose hotels with a fitness center or pool. If you belong to the Y or a health club that's part of a national chain, ask whether you can visit a location at your vacation spot. Or ask hotel staff whether local health clubs accommodate hotel visitors (there might be a small fee).
Restless rest stops. At rest stops, jump out for a quick walk around the grounds or do some stretching. Keep a jump rope in the car—for the kids or for you—and take a few turns for an invigorating workout. Toss a Frisbee at a park, swing at a playground, or explore a quaint town on foot en route to your final destination.