How To Stick to a Diet & Stay Healthy on Vacation


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Ricky & Lynn

Ricky and I took a 3-day weekend to do a “Low Carb Road Trip”. We’re big on getting out together staying active in our 40’s, which includes eating healthy and exercising – while having FUN! 😀

I posted this (goofy) picture of us online with the update “Wide awake at midnight and off to hunt down (healthy) food! 😉 “

The first comment on that was:

“Sometimes if’s okay to treat yourself in special places with special people.”

There was a similar comment on my update about ordering a low carb breakfast in the resort cafe, which was:

“(I’d order) Whatever I wanted. If I’m there, it means I’m on vacation and vacations are a time to eat whatever I want!!!!!!”

A lot of people feel that way, but I actually prefer NOT to “splurge” when I’m on vacation – or traveling period. I don’t want to feel bloated & miserable, but rather full of energy and at my absolute best! I’d rather ENJOY my trip, and there are plenty of ways to do that without making food “the main attraction”.

In fact, that’s the whole reason I started this blog. It was three years ago on the very same beach where we stayed this past weekend that I decided to start I was having breakfast with a couple of girl friends and one of them commented that she was impressed I eating low carb on a beach trip, and that she didn’t stick to her diet plan when she was on vacation.

I laughed and said “I’m on perpetual vacation. That would never work for me!” 😛

It’s true that I travel a lot (by choice), but even if you don’t travel that much… it seems there’s ALWAYS something to celebrate. This comes up a lot in my Low Carb Challenge Group too. There are holidays, birthdays, vacations, anniversaries, parties, reunions, and tons of little things in life to celebrate all the time.

I’m all for celebrations! I’m big on celebrating the little things, even. 😀 That said, food does NOT have to be the main focus. Sure it’s a big part of our culture, and most of us were raised to be “treated” with food (like a good dog! lol) or for celebrations to revolve around food.

Learning how to stick to a diet is as simple as changing your focus.

You can still celebrate, attend celebrations and events, travel and go on vacation even. But instead of focusing on food as the center of it all, focus on the experience – the people around you, the laughs, and the fun! You’ll be amazed how liberating it is not to a slave to FOOD.

Eating is for health and sustenance, period. There’s nothing FUN about overeating, feeling bloated, having a sick stomach, feeling miserable or run down, or being upset with yourself for what you ate – or how you look. It’s unfortunate really that we’ve been conditioned to associate “food & fun” together.

Midnight Walk on the BeachInstead… decide to FEEL GOOD, have fun, and focus on all the other great things around you!

We took a lot of walks along the beach, for example.

In this picture we were headed out for a “midnight stroll” and walked over a mile down the beach and out to the end of the pier and back. And let me tell you, a brisk walk in the sand is a serious workout. 😛

It feels GOOD to get your body moving, get out and see the sights, experience neat things with people you love, and even to break a sweat! It feels a lot better than being bloated & miserable, and you end up with a sense of accomplishment (and a smile!) instead of being disappointed in yourself.

There are so many FUN things to do in life, and so many other things to focus on other than food!

It does take a little practice, so make it a point to start practicing it in your own life. Every time you find your focus is on food, consider what you could focus on instead – and practice that. At a Summer BBQ? Focus on the friends & family, the great conversation, play in the water with the kids, laugh a lot and have fun!

Getting together with old friends? Plan a scenic hike, get together for bowling or a game of volleyball, or walk your dogs together.

I can pretty much promise you’ll have more laughs and more memories doing something FUN than you would sitting around a table of food. 😉

Ricky and I headed out Friday morning knowing we wanted to stay healthy on vacation. We’re not hardcore gym rats or health nuts either by the way, just normal folks. But we wanted to make the absolute most of our beach trip, and for us that meant feeling good so we could get out and do everything we wanted to do.

Here’s a picture of us after a morning swim, and on our way to a healthy breakfast:

Healthy Vacation Together :)

Ricky doesn’t eat low carb – but he’s happy to “cook low carb” for me 😀 – which is awesome! He sticks to “real food” though, so we avoid processed foods and sugar, and I’ve talked him into limiting carbohydrates because he dislikes that bloated lethargic feeling after a carb-heavy meal. So for this trip we stuck to a “low carb / real food” menu with a focus on having LOTS of fun and getting some exercise. Plenty of swimming, long walks, playing in the ocean, etc. Which is a lot more fun than the gym, in my opinion. 😉

How To Stick to a Diet & Stay Healthy on Vacation? It’s simple: Focus on having a great time, and make healthy food choices that will give you the energy to get out and do everything you want to do! View food as a necessity, not a treat. Your “treat” will be in experiences, laughs, smiles, and all the great memories you’ll make on your trip. 😀

Like this one ^ Ricky was goofing off in the pool (that’s him under the bridge), which we could jump into right from the patio off our room.

Happiness :)We had an amazing time, and felt SO GOOD the entire trip.

It’s worth it to stick to a healthy diet, on vacation or not, and put your focus on more of the fun things in life!

Besides, staying active and eating healthy, and making it a point to get out and have FUN, are the things that keep you young – and happy.

I can’t think of a better reason to stick to your health goals than that. 😉

Food is not about treats, punishment, rewards or socializing. It’s JUST food. Period. That doesn’t mean you can’t treat or reward yourself, there are just MUCH better ways to do it! Stop giving food so much power – and so much attention – in your everyday life. You’ll be amazed at how many things you can come up with to ENJOY in life… other than food.

Obviously preparation is key when it comes to vacation or any other major trip or event. In my next post I’ll share my “Low Carb Road Trip” food choices with you, so you can see just how easy it was to stick to a diet on the go.

I’d love to hear your thoughts. Do you struggle with sticking to your diet on vacation, on holidays, at events and get-togethers, etc? How do YOU handle it, given there are SO many throughout the year??

About Lynn Terry

I love making the low carb diet EASY for people with a busy lifestyle (like me!) with my KISS / Keep It Simple method. :) About Lynn Terry: Host of the Low Carb Challenge
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