While we were on our long road trip, Lindsay asked the following question:
I’m curious what you guys eat while you are on the road. Do you pack meals, or do you have a few “go-to” places that serve healthier food? Also, when you are visiting family/friends do you just put healthy eating on the back burner? I’ve gotten the impression that you value relationships with people more than being a stickler with healthy/real eating. So, what does that look like when you are visiting people and staying in their home? And if you do just eat whatever is served, how does that affect how you feel (physically)?
I decided to break down all the questions and answer them individually. So here goes!
I’m curious what you guys eat while you are on the road. Do you pack meals, or do you have a few “go-to” places that serve healthier food?
When we plan to only be on the road for one day, we can typically pack all of our food. This obviously means we can eat much healthier food, plus it keeps our costs much lower. (Eating out costs a minimum of $35 for our family – ouch!)
Here’s a list of 27 ideas I typically pick from when packing food for a trip. In addition, I pack a lot of fruits and vegetables.
Fruits and Veggies on the Go – read more!
Taking along fruits and vegetables has been so helpful in keeping us from feeling gross on a road trip. We munch on apples, clementines, berries, carrots, sweet peppers, and cucumbers along the way so that even if we do need to grab fast food, our stomachs don’t rebel as much. We are also careful to drink plenty of water. Well…I’ll admit to drinking a little less than normal to avoid taking quite as many potty stops. (“Mom, you pee all the time!” I’m not sure why they are still shocked about this.)
When we are on the road for many days at a time, it becomes significantly more difficult to pack food. Somewhere between Durango, CO and home, I snapped a couple pictures of the food in my lap to give you an idea of how we eat during long road trips.
Once I ran into a grocery store while Matt filled our van with gas (LOVING the lower prices on gas right now, by the way!). The deli section had a few items marked down that I grabbed. Some are compromise foods, but wow was this a tasty lunch. We enjoyed big salads with popcorn chicken, fresh raspberries, and sweet peppers. I also picked up some chips and fresh salsa for snacking later that day.
In an effort to keep our food stops quick, we do sometimes hit a fast food restaurant. Sometimes we get salads, but come on. Our family rarely goes to Chick fil a, so we really enjoyed our treat of chicken sandwiches and waffle fries.
That’s the beauty of eating out very rarely. When we do, it’s a treat. And yes, we do feel kind of bleh later. ;)
When you are visiting family/friends do you just put healthy eating on the back burner? I’ve gotten the impression that you value relationships with people more than being a stickler with healthy/real eating. So, what does that look like when you are visiting people and staying in their home?
When we are visiting others, we focus on enjoying fellowship and appreciating the hospitality of others – no matter what food is served. On this trip, we were served everything from farm fresh eggs or mixed green salad to canned cinnamon rolls or non-dairy whipped topping. We ate it all with gratitude. Actually, I didn’t eat it all. My system really can’t handle high amounts of sugar anymore, so I had to graciously decline some offerings. Like on the eggs and cinnamon roll morning, I just ate eggs and drank coffee with our hosts. No one questioned why I wasn’t eating rolls, and trust me, my boys ate my share. :)
During our extended stay in California, we were able to eat many delicious home-cooked and healthy meals – some prepared by me, many prepared by other loving hands. We also ordered pizza once to maintain the sanity of all the mothers trying to keep up with all the festivities. Balance is key, right?
If you do just eat whatever is served, how does that affect how you feel (physically)?
No doubt, our bodies do feel the difference in eating choices (and lack of activity) after a day or so. We’ve found that as long as we continue drinking plenty of water and find ways to sneak in fruits and vegetables, we do okay. Now that we’re home, we’ll get back to our regularly scheduled program of eating mostly whole foods.
Here’s a picture of our shopping cart yesterday when we got back home from being on the road for 12 days:
I had done some price matching on my phone during the 5,934 hours I had to sit and do nothing in the van. Most of what I found didn’t work to price match, but I did get four pineapple for $1.29 each, and golden delicious apples for just 68¢ per pound. Mixed greens, spinach, raspberries, blueberries, carrots, broccoli, mushrooms, and zucchini came home with us, as well as some cheese, buttermilk, yogurt, and cream. Tonight we’ll pick up our farm fresh milk (can’t wait!) and get back to our normal dairy drinking and culturing.
Oh, and see the big turkey in my cart? More on that tomorrow, because obviously, you want to know all about my turkey.
So how about you? How to you eat when traveling? What works best for your family?