Tips for Traveling While on a Whole30

We are now three weeks in to our 2019 Whole30. Amanda and I have been traveling a lot for work this month. It is definitely tough, so for our weeks 2 and 3 update we wanted to share some of our tips for staying Whole30 compliant while traveling.

  1. Pack Snacks. This is a big one. Pack more than you think you need. Airport food sucks even when you aren’t restricting what you eat. Trying to find something without sugar, fried, or wrapped in bread is even worse. When you are on a roadtrip, gas station and rest area fare is about the same. We both stocked up on Larabars, That’s It bars, Thunderbird bars, plantain chips, sweet potato chips, and carrots.
  2. Mexican places are your friend. I ate Mexican food three times last week. It is so easy to get beef, chicken, or pork with whatever vegetables that have on-hand, some lettuce, guacamole, and salsa that you eat with your pre-packed plantain chips.
  3. Most restaurants have a meat + veggie option. Sometimes you have to ask very nicely for substitutions, but your server can usually make it work. Make sure to tip because it was probably a hassle.
  4. Book a hotel with continental breakfast. I stay at Hyatt Places a lot (there always seems to be one where I need to go), and they have a hot continental breakfast included with the stay. I ate roughly four eggs and a bunch of potatoes for breakfast every morning before I left, which held me over until about noon. I avoided the bacon because it probably had sugar in it, but I ate the sausage when they had it, which I’m pretty sure didn’t have sugar in it.
  5. If you aren’t 100% compliant, that is okay. Look, aim for compliance. Try your best. Don’t cheat just because you craved mac and cheese. But if the Mexican restaurant happens to throw cheese overtop what you ordered, scrape off what you can and eat your meal. That little bit of cheese won’t tank your progress, but skipping a meal and eating pizza three hours later because your willpower is gone will. What if you find out after your meal arrives that there is milk in the mashed potatoes? Whatever. Eat them without guilt. It will be okay.
  6. Make conscious choices. There are times when staying compliant isn’t worth it. But you have to set those boundaries for yourself and know what they are. I have one main conscious boundary: I’ll break compliance for high quality, unique, local cuisine. I only broke once for a small thing. My coworker Dave and I went to a seafood restaurant in Charleston. One of their specialties is roasted local oysters with breadcrumbs and pimento cheese on top. I had a few. They were delicious. One other situation that sadly didn’t occur but I would have chosen to break for if it did is if someone got us reservations at Husk. Amanda is at a conference in the mountains this week and they have a dinner planned at an incredible Alpine-style restaurant. That is totally worth breaking for. This goal of this Whole30 is to break our over reliance on sugar and carbs, not to turn us into British monks.
  7. Good bartenders will make you alcohol-and-sugar-free drinks. Being the only one in a social situation not drinking sucks, and you are very likely to be in a situation like that if you are traveling. If it is at a good bar, ask the bartender if they can make you something without alcohol or sugar. At the oyster place I mentioned above, the bartender made me a drink with cucumber water, muddled basil, lemon juice, ginger, and lemon peel. It was delicious. Some places even have something like Seedlip available for people who don’t want alcohol.
  8. Drink plenty of water. First, you are more likely to get dehydrated when traveling because of the break in your normal routines and schedule, plus all of the dry air on airplanes. Second, drinking water can help stave off hunger for a bit.
  9. When all else fails: Salads with extra protein. I ate so many salads last week because they were the only compliant option some days. When possible, I opted for field greens, spinach, or kale as the base and always doubled up on the protein, usually grilled chicken. I got whatever veggies I could thrown on top. Olive oil, lemon juice, and black pepper as the dressing. Burger places are usually pretty cool with putting two burger patties on a salad for you. I did that twice last week.

What are some of your favorite Whole30 travel tips? Throw them in the comments!

Whole30 Week 1: Preparation and Snacks!

Amanda and I decided to do another Whole30 this January. We like to “reset” after eating and drinking too much over the holidays to cut some weight, feel better, have more energy, and prevent the usual winter sickness from a weakened immune system.

The TL;DR of Whole30 is to only consume meat, vegetables, seeds, and fruit for 30 days. No dairy, added sugar of any kind, legumes, grains, or alcohol.

This isn’t our first rodeo. We knew that we both have a jam-packed work schedule, so the only way we’d make it through is by prepping. We decided to start on January 2 this year so that we could get back from the New Year’s party, go grocery shopping, and prep as much as we could before we start.

We uncharacteristically planned out our breakfast and dinner menus for the entire week in advance. I made frittatas in advance for breakfast and Amanda chopped up vegetables so they’d be easy for me to roast.

Snacks!

Snacks are always our downfall. We can’t seem to eat enough at main meals to hold us until the next one and need to fall back to snacks. That is probably because we aren’t big breakfast people and we tend to eat dinner pretty late, usually around 8pm. Snacks hold us over.

If we don’t have Whole30 compliant snacks on-hand, it is not good. We planned ahead this year.

Here are the Whole30 compliant snacks that saved us this week:

  1. Carrot hummus
  2. Magic green sauce (h/t to Hannah Wegmann) We couldn’t find pistachios without shells, so Amanda and I cracked a ton of pistachio shells while watching Netflix one night…
  3. Carrot sticks, celery sticks, pepper sticks, and cucumber sticks. We prep these all at once and keep them in the fridge. Perfect to pack for work in tupperware.
  4. Plantain chips of all varieties. I think we’ve had 3 different brands this week.
  5. Trader Joe’s Root vegetable chips
  6. Trader Joe’s fruit wraps
  7. Satsuma oranges
  8. Almond butter
  9. Almonds
  10. Cherry Pie Larabars

What are your favorite Whole30 snacks? Let us know in the comments!

 

Our meals this week

Day Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Jan 2 Black coffee Western Omelets from the corner bodega Spaghetti squash cooked in the Instant Pot with a quick veal and pork bolognese made from home canned tomatoes
Jan 3 Black coffee, Frittata with breakfast sausage, potatoes, peppers, and onions Leftover spaghetti squash Whole Foods’ hot counter before we did our grocery shopping across the street at Stew Leonard’s. I had pork loin, broccoli, and cauliflower. Amanda had salmon, broccoli, and mashed potatoes
Jan 4 Black coffee, Frittata with breakfast sausage, potatoes, peppers, and onions Leftover spaghetti squash Chicken Enchilada Soup (h/t to Hannah Wegmann)
Jan 5 Black coffee, Frittata with breakfast sausage, potatoes, peppers, and onions Chuck: Leftover spaghetti squash, Amanda: leftover chicken enchilada soup Instant Pot pork and cabbage bowls with avocado, cilantro, and onions
Jan 6 None Black coffee, Veggie omelet with a side of bacon and winter vegetable hash at Sweet Grass in Tarrytown Flank steak and roasted vegetable bowls with pico de gallo and avocado
Jan 7 Black coffee, Frittata with Italian sausage, potatoes, and onions Chuck: Leftover pork and cabbage bowl, Amanda: Salmon and leftover roasted vegetables Curried cream of broccoli soup
Jan 8 Black coffee, Frittata with Italian sausage, potatoes, and onions Chuck: Roasted vegetables, Amanda: Curried cream of broccoli soup Chuck: Curried cream of broccoli soup, Amanda: Salmon and roasted vegetables

 

Here are a few photos from this week’s meals:

(The hot sauce you see is Crystal, which is compliant.)

Challenges

We are doing completely fine on sugar/carb cravings right now and our workouts are going fine. Our main challenge right now is that our work schedules are crazy. Planning is the only thing that kept us from eating Chipotle fajita salad bowls five days in a row.

See you next week!