One of the most common sentences we hear at the clinic is, “I had to travel for a few days and fell off the wagon, ” or “I got sick and threw everything out the window.” Have you said one of these sentences before? Sometimes it’s the smallest things that get us off track when it comes to fitness and nutrition.
I recently traveled to Minnesota to teach a class and there is always a TON of temptation when I go there. People wanting to take me out to dinner or go for a drink. Lunch being brought in that isn’t so healthy. Dessert flying around like nobody’s business.
After the trip, I was feeling great! Then Sunday hit and I felt like I had gotten hit by a truck. Pretty sure I got some sort of stomach bug. Could barely move and my whole body just ached. Why am I telling you this? Well, this is typically the type of week where someone would completely destroy their fitness and nutrition plan.
My advice to you: Don’t let that happen! I know it may feel easy to give up or you may lose willpower but you’re going to feel even worse if you lose all the progress you made. I love this quote by Jillian Michaels.
Here are a few tips I’ve learned through traveling over the years and getting sick (which pretty much happens to all of us):
- Put your game face on: If you know you are going somewhere that is going to have temptation, you have to know how you are going to handle it in advance. Know you’re going to a restaurant? Check out the menu you in advance OR have a healthy snack in advance and pick the healthiest item you can find on the menu. Spending a bunch of time in the car? Pack healthy snacks so you don’t get tempted by all the unhealthy places you drive by. Got asked to bring food? Bring a healthy food or make something you don’t even like.
- Stay positive: When you’re sick, it can feel like it is never going to go away. If you’ve missed a workout, you may feel like you’re plan is all out of whack. There are several studies that show people who have a positive attitude and remain focused are able to rebound twice as fast as those that sit there and wallow. Celebrate every small win throughout the day. It may be as little as you were able to keep some food down or you drank your water for the day. Pat yourself on the back and say, “I did it! Good job me!”
- Listen to your body: Your body is a great indicator of what you can and cannot handle. If you feel yourself getting overworked, learn when to give your body a rest. Sometimes it can cause more harm than good to continue working out when you really shouldn’t be. I learned the hard way this weekend. I decided to run on Sunday morning even though I already didn’t feel good and it made it ten times worse! Make sure you take the rest your body deserves.
- No binging: You went to the restaurant, look at the menu and see about 20 items you want to stuff your face with. One cheat meal doesn’t mean an all out binge. Trust me. You won’t feel good mentally or physically. It’s not worth it! One rule of thumb I always remember is to take a little breather between each bite. It takes time for your stomach to send the signal to your brain that you are eating and getting full. Give it time to respond! You’d be amazed at how much faster you feel full and you can avoid the all out binge. A friend of mine used to order her food and then would ask for a to go box right away. She would split the meal in half and immediately put it in the box to take back to the hotel room for the next night.
- Request what you need: Don’t know how your meal is being cooked? Ask! Most restaurants are willing to cook your food the way you need it to be cooked. If you’re offered two sides, ask to double up on the salad or if there is a veggie that can be steamed up for you. The worst that could happen is they could say no.
- Keep going!: You messed up? You gave into temptation? You missed a workout? So what! You’re human. Shake it off. Get a good night’s rest and start over the next day. One bad day isn’t going to mess up everything. The most important thing you can do is stay focused, bounce right back and keep going!
You got this. I’m already feeling better and back on track.