Brendan – Small Changes While Traveling

I’ve been good most weeks since I started the Viva Fresh Clean Eating Challenge(CEC) — eating three square meals with relatively healthy snacks in between, some exercise and increased fruit and vegetable consumption. It’s not been perfect, per se, but definitely feeling better about myself and my choices with regards to food & overall lifestyle. 

Last week, my family and I went to Disney World, as my kids were off for fall break and due to the annual New Jersey Teacher’s Convention. This was my first time away, with family and not for work, since I started the CEC. And, since starting the CEC, I had been very thoughtful about what food I look at in my home. Yes, that’s right, what food I look at in my own home. For instance, I know there are Halloween candies in the kitchen, but I don’t often look in that area of the kitchen because I know how often and to what degree I’ve consumed them in the past. What I found interesting about Disney was how often SUGAR is displayed before your eyes – whether it’s in the hotel, in the theme parks or even within some of the shopping areas surrounding the ‘happiest place on earth’. It’s everywhere!!!

One of the first things we did as a family, was decide that we weren’t eating out every morning. So, in the continued effort to eat more fruits and vegetables as inspired w/ the CEC, I choose two breakfasts thru the hotel food hall: an overnight oatmeal bake (oatmeal, blueberries, pecans) and a makeshift parfait. The overnight oatmeal was pre-made — and, consisted of oatmeal, blueberries and pecans. It was not too dissimilar to what I’ve started making at home and I loved having something like that to start the day. Another breakfast I had last week required slightly more effort – one individual portion of Greek yogurt w/ berries, a granola bar that I smashed up before opening and a banana. I combined all three ingredients into a bowl and had that ‘parfait’ in the hotel room before we rushed off to the parks. Typically, inthe past, I’d almost always go for the bagel sandwich with hash browns on the side and maybe even top it of with a donut. 

This is not to say I didn’t consume more calories or sugar over our vacation across different meal times – because, in short, I very likely did. Yes, I’m looking at you Ghirardelli with your Cookie Crumble Hot Fudge Sundae that was incredible even with its approximately 1k calories and $16 price tag. 

However, I took steps to alter my approach, even doing something I’ve not done often when it comes to the world of ice cream sundaes – I shared this one w/ my wife. 

This subtle change with regards to the Sundae or Fruit/Veg consumption in my routine aligned w/ my overall approach last week to maintain some bit of healthy eating w/ more fruits and vegetables than I have on past vacations.

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