Travel Pitfall: Weight Gain

It’s summer vacation time and travelers face particularly daunting challenges in staying fit. Tropical drinks, tasty food and lots of lounging can wreak havoc on any diet. Vacation can be a great motivator for weight loss—there’s nothing quite like the prospect of spending a week in a swimsuit to get into the gym. But while traveling to and then reaching your destination, temptation can rear its ugly head in the form of fruity drinks, rich dinners and days of relaxing by the pool.

Getting There

If you’re flying, the average airline meal packs more than 1, 000 calories. If you call 24 hours ahead, you can request the low-fat or low-calorie option. Or better yet, bring fresh food with you.

If you’re driving, bring a cooler and load it with low-calorie snacks of your choice—fruit, carrots, cheese sticks, yogurt. A small meal every few hours will keep you from overeating down the road, and you’ll steer clear of those dangerous fast-food chains.

Once There

Mini-bars: If your hotel has a mini-bar stocked with candy, chips, and liquor you always have the option of refusing the key.

Avoid bad breakfasts: If you’re accustomed to starting your day with a light meal, breakfast on the road could be your dietary downfall. Perhaps the best choice of all: a little box of cereal from the buffet, skim milk, and a piece of fruit.

Pick and choose: This is your vacation. If you want wine with dinner, order it. But then pass on the bread. Get dessert—but split it with a companion. Make every meal an occasion. Seek out foods you really love and skip those you don’t. Eat only what tastes great. Don’t waste calories on foods you can live without.