Surviving the Hotel Buffet

So this morning a client of mine looked a bit hesitant when I asked him where he was going on holiday. “Well, I’m heading to Thailand for some R&R with the family”.

“That’s great,” I said, ”So why the long face?”

“Well I’ve been doing so well these last few weeks, I’ve really got my eating back on track, lost a few pounds and I don’t want to pile it back on.”

So I’m sure many of you are in the same boat right now, about to jet off and will either be staying with family or in hotels and still wanting to keep your diet and fitness on track.

Here are 7 realistic tips to keep the scales happy:

1.  Get a workout in in the morning

If you’re staying at a hotel, most will have a half decent gym. If not, you may have a pool to swim in. Failing that, go for a run or do a bunch of hill sprints or a quick HIIT session. Making sure you get active before breakfast will raise your metabolism for the day. Chances are if you put it off until later, you will get caught up in sightseeing, relative visiting or sidetracked by that lunchtime glass of wine.

2.  Eat a good breakfast

This means ensuring you eat a good source of protein; eggs, steak, fish, chicken, with some veggies and some good carbs. Leave the sugar loaded rice krispies and the weetabix where they are. Most hotels/ relative’s pantries should have some eggs in them, at the very least.

3.  Pack some protein powder sachets and raw nuts in your suitcase

Then if you are hungry and you have nothing healthy to eat, you have some healthy snacks on hand!

4.  Keep away from the crisp and fried nut snacks

There are lots of hidden calories and trans-fat there.  Have some of your healthier raw nuts, seeds or a piece of fruit.  

5.  Aim to eat whole foods and minimal sauces

Opt for meat, fish or chicken that’s barbecued or grilled.  Leave off the sauce as these are generally loaded with sugar and preservatives, and always add a good healthy portion of veggies.

6.  Alcohol aware

I’m not going to pretend you won’t be drinking anything while you’re on your holiday, so let’s get real.  Any alcoholic beverage is empty calories, but a cold beer is nice to have at the end of a hot day.  Keep your alcohol consumption to 1 or 2 per day, intersperse with water and the impact won’t be too great. Try to have alcohol free days as well.

7.  Build exercise into your day

Go for a hike, walk, cycle ride, play with the kids, swim in the sea. Having the time to be active is one of the most enjoyable things about being away.

Last but not least, if your best laid plan goes belly up, don’t fret too much, it’s nothing that we can fix when you get back.

Happy holidays!