I can spend a considerable amount of time, driving or travelling between clients so can I eat away from home several times a week. Hotel breakfasts are a convenient way to get started in the day, sandwich lunches at client sites are not uncommon and dinner selected from the preferred motorway service station supermarket is an established habit. Sound familiar?
This month I decided that if I was going to improve my diet and fitness then I would have to follow a programme in order to get some discipline and routine back into my daily life. I chose the ‘Arbonne 30 days to Healthy Living and Beyond Programme’ then set about working out how to follow it.
The instructions were simple – have a protein shake and two plant based meals a day for 30 days, or to lose weight, substitute a second meal with a shake. The programme required setting myself goals and methods to overcome any obstacles then measure my progress over the 30 days.
This is where the problem started…….
How to eat healthily and maintain an exercise regime with so much time spent away from home?
Create smaller goals as part of an overall improvement plan
My personal exercise goals had to at least hit the Public Health England minimum target of 150 minutes per week but I threw in a 2 minute plank challenge to boost my core strength. Starting from 30 seconds it certainly seemed liked a goal that would stretch me mentally and physically! I uploaded an exercise DVD onto a memory stick and used that whenever I was staying somewhere without a gym.
Plan food shopping to include meals and snacks eaten away from home
The food goals then boiled down to what I could increase and what I could decrease. I chose 5 portions of veg a day as a target and replaced bread with wholegrain rice, quinoa, oatcakes etc. The snacks were usually tangerines, dark chocolate and almonds.
Build flexibility into your meal plans
I managed to have a basic protein shake most days although when I was at home I could add 3 portions of veg and kill 2 birds with one stone. I chose eggs for breakfast when staying in hotels or plain yogurt and fruit.
Have a hit list of products that available from your preferred retail outlet
I bought packs of ready to eat houmous and carrot sticks, salmon salads, crayfish and rocket salads from the motorway service station shops when I needed to get vegetable based meals. When on the run in town then avocado and edamame salads were another handy choice.
Remember to drink plenty of water
Water is not only refreshing but also filling. Unlike consuming sugar sweetened drinks and fruit juice, you can drink to quench your thirst without overdoing the sugar.
In general I was able to follow the plan but the beauty is that now it has finished, I have a ready made shopping list and routine that can work with lifestyle and keep me fit and healthy.
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