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Bring a bit of home along on vacation to stick to your diet plan

By Lisa Spodak (ResultsNotTypical@worldnow.com)
Provided by WorldNow

Week 57 Weigh In:

Change this week:  -1 lbs
Change overall:  -74.5 lbs

Week 58 Weigh In:

Change this week:  0 lbs
Change overall:  -74.5 lbs

Week 59 Weigh In:

Change this week:  -4 lbs
Change overall:  -78.5 lbs

Week 60 Weigh In:

Change this week:  0 lbs
Change overall:  -78.5 lbs

While part of me is a little disappointed to not have hit my mini-goal of getting to my 80-pound milestone today, another part of me is thrilled that I have lost weight or stayed the same for the past four weigh-ins.  I’m going to stick with the thrilled part!  Especially because at this point, a 1.5 pound shortfall seems relatively insignificant stacked up against what I have accomplished.

I’m particularly excited to have lost four pounds while I was on vacation!

I’ve written about sticking to a diet on vacation before, but I’m going to do it again – because I had a markedly different experience this time and learned some new strategies.

In the past I’ve focused on how to control myself and make good choices while dealing with all the new and exciting temptations on vacation.  This time, I’m going to focus on bringing a bit of home and the familiar along on vacation to make it simpler.

I realized that “sticking to it” on vacation could be easy after I got a text message from my brother, who I was staying with for the first part of my trip.  He and his girlfriend were going to the grocery store and he asked if they could pick anything up for me.  “Yes!” I answered.  And then, in the limited characters of a text message, told him the most important things I needed to feel prepared:  “Arnold Sandwich Thins, skim milk, Kraft 2% slices, grape tomatoes, Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches, Laughing Cow Light wedges, Hostess mini chocolate cupcakes.”

When I got to their apartment in Florida and found all my staples ready and waiting, I felt so much less stressed about staying on track.  My breakfast the first day was exactly what I would have eaten at home!  And finding snacks in their already healthy household was easy.  In fact, after a few days of poking around in their refrigerator, I even came away with some new ideas for snacks – Lori’s favorite was popping the yolks out of hard-boiled eggs and filling them with hummus instead.

Halfway through the week, my brother handed me off to my mom.  We all went out to dinner the first night and I asked if we could pop into the grocery store next to the restaurant before we headed home.  A quick pass through the aisles and I had my staples ready for the second half of vacation.

On the second night, we were eating at home and my mom had a couple of options – lamb chops and ribs.  I asked if we could run to the store again and pick up some tilapia instead and then, I proceeded to cook for her and my stepdad (something I don’ think I’ve ever actually done before!).

We all enjoyed the dinner and I got to feel like I wasn’t straying too far from my norm.

Now I know that the point of vacation isn’t to simply recreate being at home – what fun would that be?  But what I found was that by making sensible decisions most of the time (and making sure I still clocked significant exercise time), I was able to indulge a bit when we went out without setting my efforts back with a totally “bad” week:

  • At a Brazilian Churrascuria with my friend Heidi, I filled up on the great salad bar, sampled small bits of all the meats, indulged in their delicious cheese puffs and skipped dessert.
  • At Joe’s Stone Crab in South Beach, I stuck primarily to steamed shellfish – but also had some of their amazing Key Lime Pie.
  • At the local burger joint near my mom’s house, I split a burger and a salad with my mom, leaving half (of my half) of the bun off. I also substituted a baked potato for fries – but still snuck a few of her sweet potato fries.

I know not everybody vacations by staying with family, but even in a hotel it’s possible to bring a bit of home along.  If you can’t get a room with an efficiency or even just a small refrigerator, pick up one of those disposable Styrofoam coolers and some ice – you’ll still be able to stock up on at least some of the supplies to make your choices easy.  Even if you have to pay a little bit more in a hotel store to keep some food in your room, I think it’s a good choice for the long run.


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