Road trips are great, unless they happen at a time when a strict diet regimen needs to be followed. I was 6 months out from RNY surgery when I embarked with a friend on a 2 week road trip, I worried how to handle the fast food temptations and restaurants with Southwestern cuisine that I love, but it worked out great and I learned a lot.
I packed 2 tote bags with protein drinks, bars, powders and prepackaged protein treats. I also packed fresh fruit, instant oatmeal, Nut Thins and beef jerky.
Eating and Drinking in the Car
Having a carload of healthful food is a good start, but it doesn’t matter a bit if you don’t choose to eat them. The fear of Dumping Syndrome, while on a long car trip does help. Keeping to your schedule helps to curb those feelings to splurge. Having a traveling companion who supports your efforts and chooses to follow along with you is invaluable.
Liquids can still be a bit of a challenge. There is a tendency to slow down fluid intake to avoid too many bathroom breaks – but don’t let that slide. Fluid intake is key to sticking to the plan. Keeping water cold is a problem on an extended road trip without room for a cooler. Most places will not give you a large cup of ice — in a pinch buy a large soda with extra ice and no soda. It sounds like a waste of money, but it’s worth every penny if it helps to maintain your fluid intake.
Decaf coffee with some added vanilla protein drink and individual servings of sugar free drink mix, like Crystal Light are good go-tos.
Eating at Restaurants
Many of us can do well at restaurants near home, but Southwestern cuisine and green chili are weaknesses of mine — that was a challenge on my last trip. At lunch, I ordered green chili chicken enchiladas and ate the chicken inside and a few bites of a blue corn tortilla. Rather than feeling deprived, take a bite or two of something and savor it. As long as they fit into your calories/macros for the day it’s okay to have a few chips (count and journal them) and guacamole, or a few bites of a sopapilla with a smidgen of honey.
Make sure you eat your snacks during the day, especially high protein snacks. Make mostly good choices, don’t overload your pouch/sleeve, and log every bit of it. Enjoy yourself!