Full Day of Travel {What I Ate}

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Hi, I'm Tina!

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.

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Since a bunch of you guys are likely traveling to see family and friends for the holiday this coming weekend, I thought a post about what I ate during my full days of travel to Mexico and back might be interesting and perhaps helpful to you. Maybe they will even inspire some of your food choices!

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Traveling to Mexico

I packed my breakfast, which was a brown rice wrap with almond butter and banana slices inside. I love bringing food from home because it’s typically pretty healthy (quality ingredients + reasonable portion size) and it’s a budget-friendly option! If you’re looking for some travel-friendly meal and snack ideas, check out this post.

When I arrived at the airport, I ordered an iced decaf soy latte from Starbucks. I definitely didn’t need coffee (I mean, it’s decaf after all), but I like to treat myself a little when I am traveling. The only reason I chose soy milk over regular milk is because I like how creamy and sweet it makes my iced latte. Starbucks uses vanilla-flavored soy milk, so I don’t need to add any sugar to it.

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I also stopped at Starbucks because I wanted to buy a healthy snack for later, and it’s my go-to place for healthy food when I am traveling. I can almost always find fresh fruit or veggies there! I ended up buying a cup of fresh fruit salad to take with me on the plane.

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In the middle of my 4-hour flight to Dallas (where I had a layover), I started to get really hungry. I had already eaten my fruit cup, but we still had a good 2 hours until we landed, so I bought a snack on board.

American didn’t have a ton of food options””let alone healthy food options””so I picked the best of the bunch, which was a bag of mixed nuts with dried cranberries and honey roasted sesame sticks. The package included 4 servings for a total of more than 600 calories. My pregnancy hunger definitely took over, and I housed the entire bag in about 20 minutes. Hey, I got some healthy fats in my diet, right?

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When I landed in Dallas, I bought a healthy hummus snack with grilled chicken, pita slices, and raw veggies to hold me over until I got to Esperanza.

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When I arrived at Esperanza, I basically ate my face off: I had a snack when I arrived in my hotel room, ate a crapton of chips and guacamole during the tequila tasting, and then sat down to a 4-course meal, which is probably more than I would normally eat, but, being pregnant and traveling East to West (when you add a few more hours to your day), I wasn’t worried about the extra calories.

Traveling home to Boston

On the way back to Boston, I started my day with a big ol’ breakfast, complete with freshly pressed green juice”¦

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A fruit plate with banana bread on the side”¦

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And buckwheat vegan pancakes with fresh berries and agave syrup. I figured once I left Esperanza, my healthy food choices would be limited, so I loaded up on nutrients and satisfying foods.

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It was almost lunchtime when I headed to the airport, so I grabbed a salad from Carl’s Jr., which ended up being a lot better than I expected since it had a decent amount of vegetables and a good-size portion of grilled chicken. Usually salads from fast food places are so wussy””you basically get a container of iceberg lettuce with one tomato and two slices of cucumber””but this one was substantial. It held me over until I landed in Chicago almost 4 hours later. The chicken had a light seasoning on it and there was plenty of shredded cheese, so I nixed the salad dressing all together.

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Oh, yea, I also enjoyed a couple of macarons on the plane that the nice folks from Esperanza sent me home with.

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In Chicago, I was thirsty and hungry, so yogurt sounded really appetizing to me. I bought a yogurt parfait with fresh berries and granola. I figured the combination of protein and fat from the yogurt and fiber from the berries and granola would keep me full until I landed in Boston. And, of course, it was delicious.

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Before I boarded the plane, I bought a bag of Raisinets, which are one of my go-to sweets when I travel. The whole bag has less than 200 calories and get you a little fiber, iron, and calcium in your diet. Ok, they’re not the healthiest, but they’re better than most candy bars and chocolate treats out there!

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So there’s what I ate during my long days of travel. Some of it was healthy, some of it wasn’t-so-healthy, but I did my best to balance the “good” and the “bad.” I hope my choices inspire you to choose a healthy mix of nutritious and fun foods when you travel!

Questions of the Day

When you travel, are your food choices mostly healthy? Not-so-healthy? A mix of both?

What’s your go-to meal or snack when you’re on the road?

P.S. Be sure to enter my giveaway to win a whole bunch of beauty products from CVS! I will pick a winner on Monday!

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      1. @Jess: I was just pointing out a simple mistake.. It happens. But if a person is blogging about a particular food, especially one they got on thier vacation, it should be the correct food. It’s like if I said my name was Coraline but you call me Caroline. And Happy Holidays to you too. 🙂

    1. @Thomisina:

      Ha! You are going to argue over one “o”?? Plus they both come from the similar root meaning and origin.

      One “o”, or two they are both delicious!!

  1. Hey Tina- quick CF question for you. I haven’t found a lot of literature on this but I am wondering if you are cutting out any particular CF exercises like box jumps, burpees, toes to bar, wall walks, hand stand push ups, etc. while pregnant? I am a regular crossfitter and curious what women should be limiting/modifying during pregnancy- thanks:)

    1. I’m not currently cutting anything out, but check out crossfitmom.com for info about exercise modifications, etc. She has a ton of great info on her site! 🙂

        1. @Tina: Maybe she was nervous baby would pop right out! I think its great to see pregnant women still doing crossfit and still kicking my ass!

        2. @Tina: in case her water broke! I’m not a mom so I have no idea.. just the thought of all the squatting. We were all impressed.. that’s all… no real medical/pregnancy knowledge here.

          1. @Megan: it’s legit to be freaked out about wall balls 3 days before a due date. the advice is to stop squatting below parallel after 15 weeks because of the hormone relaxin. Squats below parallel can cause a pregnant woman to “bear down” or go into early labor. Of course, it’s all about listening to your own body, but that hormone is one to look out for.

          2. I’d say you just need to be sure you’re talking to your doctor and being clear about exactly what you’re exercise includes. With my pregnancies, my doctor said to just listen to my body. He said if I was especially tired, etc., not to push through the same way you do not pregnant, but slow down a little that day. He told me weights were ok, but I wasn’t doing anything like Crossfit. I have heard of people having some issues with heavy weights. Also that the hormone Libbi was talking about can effect things…so again, just talk with your doctor.

        3. @Tina: I have a two month old right now and was crossfitting up to the day I delivered. Thrusters, wall balls, pull-ups, you name it. I’m also a coach…I always tell ladies as long as your not high risk, are use to doing the movements, and don’t feel any pain, you’re good to go. I found I was lifting at about 75-85% of my regular lifts preprego. I did step-ups and subbed strict press for any hand stand push-ups by the 2nd trimester….oh and no rope climbs! But as long as you’re comfortable…you know your body best.

          1. @Morgan: Oh and I was definitely in good shape for labor and delivery….natural/no tearing/10 min of pushing…though all ladies/pregnancies are different. You’ll lose strength in your 6 week postpartum “break” but I was back at the gym once my doc approved it and didn’t feel too out of shape.

  2. Love taking my own snacks if possible! Looks like you had a great balance between healthy foods and treats! 🙂 I have never actually tried soy milk in my Starbucks and now that you say it is vanilla that is something I should think of – it avoids extra sweeteners!

  3. I always travel with food – I do my best to pack a jar of peanut butter, an apple or two or other portable fruit/vegetables without totally weighing my bag down. I also started bringing my favorite tea packets as well as plain old fashioned oats in zip locs- totally easy to add to hot water on a plane. I try to stay away from packaged bars as snacks but when traveling, I usually have one or two with me for emergencies like KIND or Quest.

  4. Thank you for this post! I’ll be traveling quite a bit over the next few weeks and I’m always bad about eating on the road, so I’ll have to keep this in mind 🙂 Happy Holidays!

  5. I’m all about packing bars and trail mix to avoid that mid-flight GOT TO EAT SOMETHING NOW hunger. If I’m traveling back and don’t have any of my pre-packed snacks left, I opt for buying fruit and veggies or a KIND bar. It’s so tempting to pick one of the unhealthy options but especially when I’m flying, I know I need to eat my best and avoid any potential stomach upset.

    1. Trader Joe’s brand, but they’re not nearly as good as regular wraps. They’re pretty dry and fall apart, but if you microwave them, they’re a decent option!

  6. I try to bring a few things and try new healthy things in the airport. I definitely treat myself but not a ridiculous amount since my stomach is sensitive and I don’t want to be sick on vaca. btw I love how you handle rude people 🙂 happy holidays 😉

  7. I like to travel with an assortment of healthy food because you never know what you’ll actually feel like eating. I usually include: apples, bananas, and/or clementines and a snack bar of some kind (I’ve really been digging Clif Kid Z Bars lately – they’re lower in calories than regular Clif/Larabars). Usually if we’re driving and stop to get gas/take a break I’ll buy Blue Diamond Habanero BBQ almonds (amazing) and split the pack with my travel companion. And I really love, love Krave Jerky – it’s one of the only no nitrate jerky brands I’ve been able to find and it’s delicious!

      1. @Tina: Thank you! I love that you eat healthy like 99% of the time (the fruit you bought on this trip looks delicious!) and then add a few special treats – we’re all human, right? Anyway, this shows that it possible to eat healthy on the road (or in the air) with a little planning 🙂

  8. Eating while flying can definitely be a challenge. My go to snack is apple slices, cucumber slices (pre-packed) and trail mix. I am a snacker to begin with but traveling always makes it worse. My absolute favorite is Cranberry Jubilee from Whole Foods bulk bins. It has a good variety and if I have that in my bag I avoid the bad snacks. My treat is popcorn. Next time you have a layover in Chicago (O’Hare) you HAVE to try Garrett’s Popcorn the Chicago Mix is amazing! Not healthy at all but hey its a treat.

  9. I HAVE to bring food with me when I travel, car, train or plane.
    I make sure to pack a few slices of sprouted bread w/PB; almonds, banana, apples and a Lara or PickyBar.
    If a car trip, I will make a protein smoothie with fruit, and also some sliced veggies and hummus.
    If we go to an all inclusive hotel, I try to bring alot of extra bars so I can snack on them instead of just ordering snacky foods (nachos, chicken fingers, ice creams, frozen drinks…)

  10. Next time you’re in Chicago (O’Hare) you have to hit up Garrett’s Popcorn and get the Chicago Mix. Definitely NOT a healthy option but oh so delicious! Caramel and cheese popcorn – a match made in heaven!

  11. I’m 36 weeks now, but in the beginning of my pregnancy when I was feeling pretty sick and the only thing that helped was a small snack, I would pack a TON of different options in my lunch bag for work. I never knew what I would want and what would sound not so good on any given day.
    There were times when I had like 6 or 7 different options, not including my actual lunch, just in case! Fruit was always a safe option on the really sick days.
    Your trip sounded awesome, I could use a warm vacay right about now but that’s not really in the cards for me 🙂

  12. I’d definitely say my food choices are a mix when traveling, I always try and pick the healthier option when I can to balance out the treats that I usually enjoy on a trip. I also try my best to bring my own snacks to save money and know that I’ll have something during a flight, I love your wrap idea!

  13. I always pack snacks when I travel, as I find that travel makes me more hungry than normal (which I feel is already more hungry than most “normal” people!). I always pack fruit, a bar of some sort (I know it’s basically a candy bar, but I LOVE the coconut lara bars), maybe a few packages of a 100 calorie something, some nuts, etc, and generally a PB and Jelly sandwich. I also always bring my empty water bottle to the airport and fill it up once I get past security (I’m lucky that here in Boston, we have awesome tap water). And I also usually treat myself to something chocolate during my travels!

  14. I’m totally obsessed with Starbucks spinach feta wrap…and it pretty low in calories and high in protein! I eat paleo most of the time but its a worthy cheat…so delicious. I agree that starbucks has great options.

  15. I have traveled more than my share of international flights, typically from Seattle to Iceland on Icelandair which doesn’t have any snacks and only brings around water once 🙁 I always am sure to pack an extra water bottle, luna bars and apples are my favorite snack to have on the plane. And there is always a bag of pretzels around to munch on, plus they help with any motion sickness that I may get on the flight:)

  16. Thanks for all of the options that you shared. I never know what I can and cannot take with me through security when I travel. I live in Minneapolis and they just re-did most of our airport shops. Thankfully we have some good options – I typically pick up a greek yogurt and fruit cup or a string cheese. If it is around dinner time I like to grab a sushi roll as a treat. And I always pick up a bar of dark chocolate for a sweet treat that I can use throughout my entire trip.

  17. I like to make homemade ‘trail mix’ with whole grain cereal, nuts, fruit (and M and Ms!) and then portion it into single serving bags. It takes care of both salty and sweet cravings.

  18. Hey Tina! I love that you’re stilling CFing while pregnant. I was able to CF through almost my entire pregnancy with twins! Have fun!

  19. I like to pack my own food especially sense I have a gluten and dairy intolerance, but if I can’t pack enough food, then I am resorting to the healthiest items I can, with maybe a little splurge! 🙂 I love bring nuts with cereal with me, I feel this gets my salty, sweet and crunch cravings under control. I also love to bring oranges and other citrus fruit that I peel and it won’t bruise like an apple or banana.

  20. Apples, unsalted mixed nuts, pretzels, and Pure Organic Bars are my go-to travel snacks.
    If I have a really early flight, I pack a pb sandwich or some plain shredded wheat in a bag and add raisins and almonds.

  21. If I’m traveling over meal time, I’m all about healthy sandwiches. If I’m just traveling in between meals, I’m all about a fun drink (chocolate coconut water is my fav) and trail mix. It’s my go to!

  22. I love posts like this. I usually opt for some kind of sandwich before I get on a plane because traveling makes me really hungry (might be the boredom factor). I also like bringing nuts/fresh fruit with me because the combination is filling and it’s easy to carry. There’s a Pour la France café in the airport in Denver and if that’s where I’m flying out of, I stop and get a lemon hummus plate with extra veggies instead of pita chips. They have the best hummus!

  23. I had to laugh while reading your posts, and all the references to your pregnancy thinking of how HARD it must have been for you not to write about your it over the last three months! I’m sure it was always on the tips of your fingers! 🙂

    Thank you for sharing this part of your life with us!

  24. When I travel it is mix of healthy and not. I also like Starbucks and will usually get one of their boxes, with hummus. I also try to bring granola bars, pretzels and a piece of fruit from home.

  25. Travel is such now that you really do have to plan your meals. The airlines don’t feed you, airport food is so expensive and at times healthy options are not readily available. Now I pack my snacks to sustain me until I get to my destination. I do love eating at the TGIF’s in the airport in Hotlanta, though. Lol.

  26. I bring a crap load of food because it’s so hard to get tasty and healthy gluten free and vegan options when dining out, let alone when travelling! Those buckwheat pancakes would be right up my street though! I usually bring something baked..homemade granola bars..or something like a banana bread. Sachets of nut butter are super handy and lots of fresh fruit . A tub of roasted veggies with homemade hummus has been known to accompany me on occasion too!

  27. I’m pretty certain my food choices while traveling are terrible, I’m so ashamed! I do try really hard though to take my own water bottle if I can, and keep it filled up by my side so I’m less tempted to buy the nearest soda!

  28. I always make sure I have unsalted peanuts, beef jerky, cheese sticks/string cheese & water with me when I travel anywhere!

  29. I also like to bring packets of instant oatmeal — you can get hot water and a cup just about anywhere in an airport, as well as onboard, and in a hotel room (just brew some water in the coffee/tea maker). it’s also not heavy or messy to carrry.

  30. I feel like I eat 10 times more when I travel. Cliff bars, Lara bars, you name it, I pack it and eat it. My favorite snack to buy lately has been Starbucks goodies. I love the nutritional content on the container and NOTHING beats the brown rice veggie salad. I am telling you, its a life changer.

  31. I really hate to even bring this up because I am a long time follower and LOVE your blog, but before you were pregnant you never really focused so much on clarifying “healthy” meals or counting calories. Is there a reason you are now? Or was this specific for the traveling post?

    Especially since your pregnant I just think it’s important to listen to your body, obviously you are now supporting another life. I know you do listen to your body and will continue too, but it was just an observation of the numerous references to things being “healthy” and the amount of calories.

    Regardless, I hope you had a great trip! And I never said congrats on the pregnancy on other posts so CONGRATS!!

  32. I always try to eat healthy when traveling just because I know it’ll affect me for the trip! I always try to drink as much water as possible to ward off dehydration and the tiredness of travel!

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