Our annual January Whole30 with the QCKB community is complete! While we learn so much about our members and ourselves each time we press reset with this program, one thing really stood out to us this time around, and that was how many people travelled while on the Whole30.
In years past, many people used business trips or vacations as reasons NOT to partake in the Whole30. If we had a Whole30-approved piece of bacon for every time we heard that excuse, we’d have a whole lot of compliant bacon (mmm, bacon).
We asked those brave travelers for some of their best tips and advice for navigating traveling during a Whole30, so read on for their tips and insightful realizations along the way!
ABBY: The biggest challenge over the 30 days was work travel. I had one full day of travel (Day 8) and four days of travel (Day 21-25) to Florida. Planning was key here, and luckily I had enough control over trip logistics during these two trips to set me up for success. For the first travel day, I scoped out “healthy eating” venues in advance, but also starred Whole Foods and Chipotle in Google Maps as good back-up options. Whole Foods is mecca for the business traveler with hearty salad bars and compliant snacks galore.
Before I left my house at 3:50 a.m., I cut up an apple and added some lemon juice to keep fresh. I quickly microwaved some veggie egg muffins I made the previous weekend and ate those on my way to the airport. I grabbed an epic bar, almond butter packet, a banana and a few Chomps for my bag. These were nice snacks to have on the plane and in the car on my way to meetings. The day progressed nicely, until I was thrown a bit of a curveball when my day ended at the airport earlier than expected to catch an earlier flight. I found myself at the Atlanta airport in a terminal with almost all fast food options…and, of course, starving. I found one tolerable restaurant that offered a plate of mixed steamed vegetables and they gave me a piece of grilled chicken on top that had questionable seasonings (remember that the perfect Whole30 doesn’t exist!).
The fact that my second hotel had a full-sized kitchen was a Whole30 miracle! I managed fully compliant meals in the comfort of my own kitchen, much to the amusement of my coworkers. Speaking of which, I initially got some ribbing from colleagues when I mentioned my eating plan and no drinking. Once they realized I was committed, they applauded my discipline to say no to all the cocktails.
Something interesting also happened on that second work trip. Admittedly, I had a pretty toxic December. I don’t necessarily regret what I did to myself over the holidays, but it certainly made the first two weeks of January difficult. During that time, I experienced some good days, followed by bad days. When I arrived in Florida on Day 21, I finally began to feel consistently good. And as a result, I was totally fired up for work responsibilities as well as nailing some hotel-based workout routines. Had this trip happened a month earlier, I would have been way more stressed and anxious and probably would not have performed at the level I did. Another lesson learned — making good food decisions during potential stressful moments cannot be underrated.
The past 30 days have been truly transformational. Michelle has been on me for years about the importance of nutrition for peak fitness and performance. While I always believed her, it wasn’t until I made a commitment to the Whole30 that I truly became a convert to this way of thinking. As of this writing, I still have adhered to the Whole30 eating plan and am considering how reintroduction will work for me. I’m still loving all the options that I have (thanks again, Pinterest), but will plan to reintroduce something when it really speaks to me. The long-term success of this experiment will be remembering those key observations I mentioned above and knowing that I have both the freedom to make good decisions to eat good food as well as good decisions to eat non-compliant food, knowing that a quick reset will get me back on track.
KATE: It also helps to be visiting people who planned for w30 guests ahead of time and made sure everything that was prepared was compliant.
NATE: Tips and tricks were well stocked, approved road snacks and very accommodating and conscientious hosts.
ANGIE: Most cities have a Walmart, and they have frozen Whole30 meals now. They’re in the healthy/gluten free frozen section. They work, but aren’t delicious.