Hot sunshine, cold cocktails and lazy days on the beach – spring break is the stuff that dreams are made of.
If you’re not careful though, the week long respite could set back your healthy routine considerably. While it’s totally understandable to want to let loose and indulge a bit on spring break, you’ll regret it if you go overboard and have to work harder at the gym to undo the damage.
Here are a few tips to make sure you eat well even at the resort.
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
Drinking water sounds so simple, but it’s easy to forget when you’re more concerned about getting a good spot on the beach than packing a water bottle. So take extra care to make sure you do the latter. Proper hydration is a key component in maintaining your health on spring break.
Don’t Hydrate With Booze
One beverage that doesn’t count toward your daily intake of fluids? Alcohol. Booze actually dehydrates the body, so you’re not doing yourself any favours by going too heavy on the margaritas. Make sure you drink plenty of water before a night out and pace yourself if you intend to drink.
Work Out When You Can
You may be tempted to totally abandon your typical fitness routine while you’re on spring break, but this just means you’re coming home to an uphill battle. Instead, find ways to stay active throughout the week without letting fitness suck the fun out of your time off. Do a quick workout at the hotel gym one or two mornings or go for a run along the sandy shoreline with a friend.
If you’re staying at an all-inclusive resort, one of the greatest sources of temptation may be the all-you-can-eat buffet, but just because you can eat it all doesn’t mean you should. Fill your plate with lean protein, plenty of veggies and a starch, and don’t go back for seconds. Only indulge in dessert a few nights of the week.
Don’t Skip Meals
Some people skip meals altogether to make up for the calories of a night of drinking or from over-indulging at that buffet the day before. Your body needs fuel each day though, so keep things lighter and healthier instead. Skipping a meal will leave you sluggish and irritable at best, so don’t do it.
Check Food Prep
When you do hit the buffet, make note of the way each dish is described. Opt for items that are steamed, grilled, baked or broiled as these tend to contain fewer calories and less fat. When you see adjectives like “creamy” or “crispy,” that’s a good indicator you should steer clear of that unhealthy option.
Depending on your destination, you may be able to bring along your own food. For example, go glamping and pack healthy groceries to fuel you through your spring break. Book a few fully equipped cabins, complete with kitchens, and avoid the spring break weight gain with ease.
Research Healthy Options
Do you intend to go out to eat a lot over the course of your spring break? Then prepare properly. Research healthy restaurants in the area where you’ll be staying. Look for eateries that serve up lots of veggies, lean proteins and maybe even a healthier cocktail or two. This way, you’ll already have a few options ready to go when you decide to eat away from the hotel.
Watch Your Snacking
When you’re lying on the beach all day, boredom will eventually set in. This might be when you’re tempted to reach for a bag of chips or a box of cookies and start munching. Fight this urge. Snacking might not seem like a big deal in the moment, but if you graze all day, you’ll end up far exceeding your daily number of calories. Either fill up at meals so you don’t feel the need to snack or fill your beach bag with some healthy snacking options like nuts, dried fruit and low-sugar granola bars.
Just Say No to the Mini Bar
Chances are your hotel room will come with a mini bar, which is going to be a constant source of temptation. Remove the mini bar’s contents from the equation by informing the front desk that you’re not interested in accessing it. Many hotels will change your keycard so that it won’t open the mini bar at all — so no need to worry about cracking!
With these tips in your toolbox, it should be relatively simple to stay on track and eat healthy during spring break. Of course, this doesn’t mean you can’t have fun! Feel free to indulge, but always do so in moderation.
Emily is a freelance writer, covering conservation and sustainability. You can read her blog, Conservation Folks, for more of her work.
Read some more of Emily’s work here -> https://artofhealthyliving.com/know-meat-from-healthy-happy-animals/