So how do you keep yourself fit and eating right while you’re away so you don’t have that ‘ugh’ moment when you come back a few kgs heavier, just after landing on HK soil.
So what to do? Here are my handy hints if you want to keep up the good work and the lean tum that you’ve been working for all year.
Here are 8 realistic tips to keep the scales (and you) happy:
1. Get a workout in in the morning
If you’re staying at a hotel, most will have a half decent gym. If not, you may have a pool to swim in. Failing that, go for a run or do a bunch of hill sprints or a quick HIIT session. Or take along a TRX; easy to pack and light; you can ask your trainer for an easy programme to follow. It’s also a good idea to ensure you warm up before-hand too, especially if you are going to cooler climes and going for a run (ooh the joy of humidity free air!) Making sure you get active before breakfast will raise your metabolism for the day. Chances are if you put it off until later, you will get caught up in sightseeing, relative visiting or sidetracked by that lunchtime glass of wine.
2. Eat a good breakfast
This means ensuring you eat a good source of protein; eggs, steak, fish, chicken, with some veggies and a handful of good carbs, especially after a workout. Hotel buffets usually have all of the above, just leave the rice krispies and the weetabix where they are. Most hotels/ relative’s pantries should have some eggs in them, at the very least. Offer to pop to the shop if you are staying with friends or family, at least then you can make sure you have some food in the fridge that works for you!
3. Pack some protein powder sachets and raw nuts in your suitcase
Then if you are hungry and you have nothing healthy to eat, you have some healthy snacks to hand! Take a shaker to make the protein shake. I always take a selection of my array of supplements with me but some people leave them at home.
4. If you can help it, keep away from the crisps and fried nut snacks
Lots of hidden calories and trans-fat in the bar snacks. The salt will make you thirsty and roasted nuts often contain rancid oils. Have some of your healthier raw nuts and some fruit or if you’re in Asia, order chicken satay!
5. Keep to whole foods
Go for meat, fish or chicken that’s barbecued or grilled. Leave off the sauce as you don’t often know what it contains and always add a good healthy portion of veggies or a big salad.
6. Alcohol aware
I’m not going to pretend you won’t be drinking anything while you’re on your holiday, so let’s get real. Any alcoholic drink is empty calories, but a cold beer is nice to have at the end of a hot day. Always have food before drinking as you will only eat more if you start drinking first….Limit your alcohol consumption, intersperse with water and the impact won’t be too great. Try to have alcohol free days as well.
N.B. Vodka, tequila and red wine have the lowest glycemic Index.
7. Build activity into your day
Go for a hike, walk, cycle ride, play with the kids, swim in the sea. Having the time to be active is one of the most enjoyable things about being away.
8. Sleep and Rest
Take the opportunity to sleep in, have a siesta, snooze by the pool, read that book, daydream and chill out. Holidays are for taking it down a notch, which ultimately is very important for your health.