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Travel Snacking Success?

Zachary and I had the privilege to join his extended family last weekend in Kentucky for the funeral of his cousin Beau. While a death in the family is a tragic thing, I am thankful for the cultural practice of gathering for a funeral. It can bring so much closure and give loved ones special time together.

The drive from Longview to Lexington was supposed to be 11 hours and 53 minutes, according to Google Maps, but there is no way to not add at least 2 hours with stops. So, it took us 14 hours both ways.

I am trying to make healthier eating choices while at the same time being frugal, so I packed snacks from home to eat in the car.

How did I do at eating healthy on this trip? I failed. There is no shame, but I definitely indulged in way too many carbs. Like I said–no shame. But the reality of healthful living is that it’s hard. And I didn’t have the emotional or mental reserve to make better choices.

But I think I have some tactics to try next time we road trip.

1. Exciting snacks. I was trying to save money, so I just grabbed the snacks we already had in the pantry–almonds, apples, and peanut butter. These things are good for me when I just need something to hold me over for the next meal, but in the car, I absolutely did not want to eat another apple (after #3). Next time, I plan to stock up on healthy things that my brain considers treats, like Lara bars and the like.

2. Exciting drinks. Indulging in a diet coke is something I will plan for next time we travel. I need the caffeine to stay awake while my husband drives (of the 28 hours we were in the car…I drove a whopping 3.5!). Fancy coffees tend to have more calories, but if I make a plan for those calories, I will enjoy the treat more. The only problem with this strategy is that I have a bladder the size of a pea. And the more I stop to go to the bathroom, the more temptation there is to buy snacks.

3. Rest Areas. They are designed for potting and leg-stretching, not snack-purchasing. Who carries single dollars anyway? Sometimes we do, but see #4.

4. Bring cash for food purchases. We have moved out of our good habit of using cash back into just using the debit card. It is so much easier, but it spends a lot faster. Yes, it can make Rest Areas more of a temptation, but if you can see how much money you have to get you to your destination and back, it makes you be more frugal.

5. Plan at least one ‘splurge.’ Money-wise and calorie-wise. The problem on my most recent trip was that I didn’t want to have any splurges, and I ended up splurging, like, 7 times. I’ll be doing some extra Refit this week!

What are the strategies you use on road trips to keep yourself healthy? Please share!