Road Trip Tips for a Healthy Holiday
Do your holiday plans include a trek across I-70? Up I-80 to Iowa? Down I-35 to Wichita or beyond? No matter the distance, there’s nothing quite like a road trip to send your good eating habits packing. Try these road trip tips and keep that travel day in the “healthy” column. Save the cheat day for grandma’s famous homemade cookies!
- Pack a small cooler with fresh fruit (think: grapes and sliced apples), low-fat cheese sticks, carrots, and individual hummus or peanut butter packets. The dippers add protein and entertainment for the kids…no spoons needed. Just remember to stick the cooler in the backseat–not the trunk–so the snacks are accessible. We learned that the hard way once.
- Make sure each family member has a reusable water bottle filled with ice before you take off. Throw a couple of big bottles into cooler for refills. Sipping on water, rather than juice or soda, quenches thirst without added sugars. Bonus: no sticky or smelly messes if it spills (and someone always does!).
- Dial back the sodium by staying away from traditional car snacks like crackers. Opt for something like Fuel Up Power Bars, which are high in protein, fiber and flavor. If you are super on top of things, pack a picnic and avoid the drive-thru line altogether.
- Trying to stay awake? Load the driver’s door pocket with sugar-free mints and gum, instead of candy. And don’t forget a playlist of their favorite tunes and podcasts!
- Finally, plan your stops in places that allow for some physical activity; rather than a restaurant parking lot, use your mapping app and stop at a park or playground, or even just a neighborhood with sidewalks. Just one quick loop around the block can renew your energy for the drive. Bring a ball for older kids or bubbles for the little ones and have a 10-minute play stop to move around and get the wiggles out. If your stops are really limited, or the weather is really frigid, just a few lunges and easy stretches while you pump gas are enough to get the blood flowing again.