Nutrition For The Traveling Athlete

Whether you’re traveling for fun or going to a competition, sticking with the routine and healthy diet is important. It keeps you on pace and you won’t lose ground. While your dietary needs are the same as when you’re at home, getting adequate nutrition for the traveling athlete is more difficult. Some of you use juicers and food processors at home, but traveling with all your kitchen appliances isn’t an option that most people want to take. Rather than letting everything slide and starting from scratch when you get home or facing the potential that all your work will be for naught at competition, finding ways to eat healthy, while traveling is the best way to resolve the problem.

Plan ahead.

No matter where you’re going, planning ahead to ensure there are healthy options available is important. Check out the hotel or location you’re staying, restaurants, groceries and farmer’s markets in the area. Are you staying in a house or in a hotel? That makes a difference, too. You have far more options for healthy eating in a house with a kitchen. Your mode of travel also makes a difference. If you’re taking a bus or car, there’s room for a cooler and packing healthy food for the road. Flying brings different challenges.

Make sure you stay hydrated.

A diet higher in carbs right before you leave helps build extra energy and increases fluid stores, but you should drink a cup of fluid every hour if flying. Don’t drink tea, coffee, alcohol or soft drinks as they dehydrate you. Plan ahead by eating probiotic foods a few weeks ahead to boost your immune system and also adjust your body to the new time zone. Go outside as soon as possible after you land to adjust to the new time. Pack nourishing snacks, like nuts and fresh fruit to eat on the plane.

If you’re driving, it’s easier to pack what you need.

You can fill your cooler with healthy snacks to eat on the drive, but it’s best to stop at a rest stop and sit down outside for the meal. Getting out of the car and moving around is important for your circulation. Plan ahead with some exercises to do at the rest stop. If you’re spending several days on the road, plan ahead by mapping out stops where healthier food is available. There are always whole food stores that have a deli or healthy restaurant options. It’s all about planning. Make sure you have plenty of water and everyone on the bus or in the car has a bottle available at all times.

  • Some snacking options, such as raw vegetables, hard boiled eggs, yogurt, berries and hummus are great options for driving. For flying, dried and fresh fruit and nuts are good.
  • Don’t forget local options like farmer’s markets, for snacks along the way. Buying organic fruit locally is an option that you can use as you drive or when you arrive.
  • Whether your travel is for fun, business or competition, don’t change your eating habits just because you’re on vacation. Choose from sensible options from buffets and stick with your dietary restrictions if you’re in training.
  • If you need more help on how to stick with healthy eating when you’re on the road, that’s part of the coaching program at JARfit. Just ask and we’ll help.

For more information, contact us today at

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