From daily training to pregame pasta dinner, routine helps to foster a focused mindset that makes an athlete successful. Travel can throw a loop in normal eating frequency and jet lag and can make it difficult for the athlete to fuel properly.
If you’ve got a big race coming up that you’re traveling for or if you’re always on the road with your team, planning food ahead of time for travel can keep your nutrition in check so you’re ready to perform. Here’s a list of my top traveling nutrition strategies for athletes.
1. Scope out the restaurants. Before you leave for your trip, search around for restaurant reviews for the best places to eat on your route and in the destination city so you don’t have any surprises.
2. Pack smart. Stock up on snacks… and pack extras. My favorite travel snacks are dried fruit, nuts, bars, protein shakes, canned tuna with crackers, applesauce, peanut butter and jelly, granola, instant oatmeal packets, single serving almond butter.
3. Hydrate, Hydrate. Fluid losses will happen with traveling even if you don’t notice it. Always carry a water bottle with you. If you’re flying, fill up the bottle after you get though security so that you don’t get dehydrated on the flight.
4. Be consistent. Although it’s tough to stay in a routine with the challenges of travel, do your best to eat on a schedule. The body craves consistent fuel to feel energized and to nourish your muscles.
5. Eat the usual. You’ll likely want to enjoy some local cuisines on your trip, but stick to what you’re use to. The night before the competition is not the time to try new-to-you foods. If you want to be adventurous, wait until after your game to indulge in the local fare.
What are your top travel foods and strategies for eating right on the road?
Make a batch of this Coconut Quinoa Granola for a quick, healthy snack that's great for traveling. Tweet this
Coconut Quinoa Granola
- 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
- 1 cup raw walnut halves, chopped
- 1/2 cup raw sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
- 1/4 cup whole golden flaxseeds
- 1 cup rolled kamut (*use gluten-free oats for gluten-free granola)
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup agave nectar
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. In large bowl combine quinoa, nuts, seeds, kamut, dried fruit, coconut and spices together and mix until incorporated. In small bowl stir together coconut oil, vanilla, and agave nectar. Place coconut oil mixture in microwave for 10 seconds until melted; then pour over nut and oats and mix until fully coated. Pour granola on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes until granola is golden. Allow to cool completely before transferring to an airtight container.