We just came back from a trip to the Grand Canyon. Active, breathtaking and fun!
I love National Parks.
Such beauty and I feel a sense of community—this land is preserved by us (our government) to be enjoyed by all. Love that.
But the food is another story.
It was a road trip, so the eating became challenging right from the start.
We ate at places like The Wagon Wheel, Giggling Cactus, Big E Steakhouse & Saloon and Big John’s Texas BBQ.
Notice a theme? “Big” is one of them.
No kidding! The portions everywhere were enormous which of course makes the micro-environment (the plate) a bit tricky.
Choices can be limited, too, especially when it come to greens.
So, here are three hard won suggestions for eating out while traveling (whether for vacation or work):
Some places literally have none on the menu. So whenever you see any—order them! It’ll help you balance out the times when greens are unavailable.
Salads with protein, double steamed veggies instead of the fries and non-cream based vegetable soups are some ways to get in the good stuff.
And feel free to add salt. The veggies may not be given as much attention as the fried fun, so they may need a little love—enhance them yourself!
Ask for spices and condiments (or consider bringing your own) so you can enjoy your meal while still keeping your digestive tract running smoothly.
This is of course true of any meal out, but especially true across America.
Portion size is why ordering “a treat” is a double whammy while traveling.
Not only is the dish higher in calories than you would normally eat, but the portion is so big you are getting quadruple the calories.
It can be very difficult to eat less than the portion given.
It sometimes doesn’t make sense to take half your meal home when traveling, so we’re less likely to, making controlling portion size even more challenging.
The most reliable way to keep portion size in check is to split the dish with an eating companion. It’s the best way I know to ensure only eating half.
Ordering a kid’s portion or an appetizer could help with the portion size, but a lot of the time there are even fewer safe choices there. You could get lucky!
Choosing to have your non-nutritive calories with or after dinner will satisfy the “vacation” part of you while maintaining some control of the calories.
And you can trade off. Many, many restaurant meals will be had while traveling, so decide to have wine one night and a dessert the next.
Depending on the type of travel, you may be staying in a place with a kitchen. Halleluiah! You save so many calories by going to the grocery store for your usual breakfast and lunch. Something to consider.
Traveling presents a caloric-challenge, but with planning and a little creativity you can enjoy your time and not have too much to deal with once you get back home.