On the Road Again: How I’m Staying On Track While Travelling (Part 2)

What LAX Looks Like These Days

Well, this week has been a mixed bag to say the least! Fortunately, my family and I tested negative multiple times throughout our travels. We are now staying in a quarantine facility for the next two weeks. Honestly, I’ve been hanging on by a thread in terms of my eating and exercise habits. Emotionally, I thought I was ready for this move but visiting my grandfather’s grave brought out a wave of anguish and anxiety I wasn’t expecting. After a good cry, I felt a deep sense of renewal and excitement for the future. This isn’t goodbye forever—just goodbye for now. 

Eating healthy during this trip has been so much more difficult than I anticipated. Once we traveled to L.A., everything was so much more crowded that we ended up just eating peanut butter jelly sandwiches in our hotel room rather than venture out. We did go out to eat on occasion, but our options were limited to whatever was served in the hotel restaurants or the Starbucks café in the lobby. I was constantly reminded why I never go out to eat. I would make what I assumed were sensible choices, only to find my plate filled with unexpected French fries or my oatmeal obviously heavily sugared. I opted for Starbucks when the line was short, but this was only the case very early in the morning. Fortunately, Starbucks has many healthy grab and go options. I’m particularly fond of the reduced fat turkey bacon breakfast sandwich and egg white sous vide egg bites—and they have sriacha!

Getting exercise has been much easier than I hoped. In L.A., we were able to take long walks on the beach or around the hotel area. There was little to no foot traffic in the areas we went to walk and people were very compliant with mask wearing. I haven’t picked up on my yoga practice yet, but I did find a great yoga strap at a grocery store that will help me get some good stretches. In quarantine, we have been able to go for multiple walks per day. They have a nice track outside that is separated from the rest of the facility. We can walk for one hour stints several times per day—all while masked up and keeping our distance from others. I had a bad post-flight headache the first two days of quarantine, so I’ve only just started getting my exercise back in. 

My key takeaway from this week is how much I hate not having control of my meals. I hate ordering something off the menu and getting something I didn’t want or need added. Even in quarantine, the meals we are given can have quite large portion sizes sometimes. The meals are so delicious that I end up eating the whole thing. I appreciate the hospitality, but I can’t handle that kind of temptation. I’ve accepted that there’s only so much I can control right now and that’s ok! Quarantine is temporary and I’m in this for the long haul. Tomorrow is always a new opportunity for improvement. 

Please like, comment and share with people you care about.

Remember, always be kind to yourself and keep moving forward. 

4 comments

  1. This is a great blog post, Amanda! I get anxiety just thinking about traveling post-COVID and where I am going to get my next healthy meal. Even if I were to pack my own meals, it’s a lot of extra work. Eating healthy on the road is super tough, so I commend you for being conscious of your decisions! Tomorrow is a new day.

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  2. Good afternoon Amanda and I appreciate your blog content as I have struggled with balancing travel, a graduate degree, maintaining my diet, and my fitness goals. Often caught with cognitive dissonance as we have to perform certain due diligence to stay on track with schooling and therefore I keep pushing back my meal prep and trips to the gym. Given the current health state that we are in, I do not care to be in a crowded facility and therefore choose to go at odd hours to avoid as many people as possible. I find that meal prepping on Sunday or Monday works best for me and I am more likely to push myself to the gym if I do so. Fortunately, after May 14, I will be able to focus on my career goals, health, and fitness with greater accuracy. Looking forward to the content you procure.

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  3. Nursing a restricted diet, and complementing it with appropriate amounts and types of exercise are very hard on the road. Most of my family (2 daughters and me) have Celiac. Many restaurants are good, but even the most well meaning can have cross contamination in the kitchen that they are unaware of. My elder daughter travels with a Nima gluten test kit just to make sure. At one dinner, the waiter insisted that the food was gluten free, and the chef came out to reinforce it, yet it tested positive for gluten with the Nima. So they had a kitchen issue that they did not know of.

    And on exercise, one’s muscles and metabolism are optimized for the type of exercise one does. I have friends who are swimmers, and it can be very hard to find a real lap pool on the road. Runners and walkers are the most flexible — bikers — forget it unless the hotel gym has stationary bikes. In my experience, a stationary bike is not the same thing as a real bike, especially a mountain bike on a beautiful trail. I can easily go out for a couple of hours on my trail bike, maybe 20 minutes on a stationary (mostly I just get bored).

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    • I agree! I just decided that I will focus on moderating my portion sizes and taking advantage of outdoor exercise as much as possible. Other than that, not much is in my control at the moment. Eating out with Celiac sounds like such a challenge! I have friends and family with this condition and they do not typically go out to eat much at all. I think that restaurants should take dietary restrictions much more seriously so that everyone can eat safely. I admire the efforts of Food Network Chef Ming Tsai to advocate for stricter food safety regulations in restaurants after one of his children was born with 7 different food allergies. I found an article here for more information: https://abcnews.go.com/Health/food-allergy-awareness-chef-ming-tsai-inspired-son/story?id=17879455.

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