Vacation is meant to be a time for indulgence, fun and relaxation.
However, if you’re right in the middle of a body transformation plan this can cause serious issues, setting you back considerably for weeks or even months.
Luckily, there are multiple steps you can take to ensure that you are still enjoying yourself, yet doing so from within the guidelines of your transformation plan.
Just when you thought you couldn’t have both, below are 5 of my favorite tips for enjoying your vacation while sticking to your body transformation goals all at the same time!
Tip #1: Have A Clear Game Plan
Going on a vacation can often be considered a free-for-all when it comes to indulging in food and drink. While vacation should certainly be a place for those things, it can cause issues if you have a serious body composition goal.
If your goal is important to you and you feel as though your vacation might pose an issue, I suggest having a sound plan of action to apply once the vacation begins.
This plan can range from how many calories per day you’ll eat, deciding whether or not to exercise, how much you’ll drink and even ways to manage food if you are presented with less than optimal options.
By making a plan, you can ensure that you are able to stick to your goals to the extent you wish to.
Tip #2: Buy Groceries
One of the best things about hotels is that many offer the ability to cook your own food. Sometimes, hotels even offer full or modified kitchens with full-size fridges.
While vacation is certainly about enjoyment, finding ways to manage that enjoyment is quite easy if you have the option to cook your own food.
My personal suggestion is to buy groceries to enable you to self-cater for at least half the day, every day.
Not only will this method likely be cheaper than eating out at every meal, it will also mean you can stay on track for much of the day, while allowing room for some indulgence later in the day.
As opposed to eating out with temptation at every meal, cooking your own foods for much of the day will allow better self control, enabling you to continue your body transformation, while still leaving time for enjoyment later.
Tip #3: Opt For Low-Calorie Drinks
Everyone knows that vacation can be a prime time to indulge in alcohol. However, one or two drinks can quickly turn into ten.
While doing so isn’t always an issue, if you’re drinking higher calorie drinks, consuming upwards of a 1000 calories from drinks alone isn’t unheard of.
Fortunately, different types of alcohol have different amounts of calories. When vacationing with a body composition goal in mind, I suggest opting for clear liquors rather than focusing on beer.
For example, one drink of Gin or Vodka will set you back roughly 60-80 calories while an IPA can set you back 200 calories or more.
Now onto cocktails, which will pull in around 600-1200 calories per single cocktail, normally a mix of cream, sugar and alcohol. Over time, these calories can really start to add up, and that’s without even calculating any of the foods you enjoy.
Luckily, many clear types of liquor go quite well with flavored sugar free beverages.
For example, by opting for a rum with zero calorie soda, you’ll avoid consuming at least 100 extra calories as opposed to if you chose a regular rum and coke.
If you drink 4 of these a day, over a 10 day vacation, that’s 4000 calories and 1000g grams of sugar you just saved with this one simple change!
In short, limit cocktails and calorie dense alcoholic beverages and stick with zero calorie mixers and spirits.
Tip #4: Program Your Vacation As A Re-Feed
Chronic calorie restriction is a thing of the past with periodic re-feeds being one of the best ways to avoid metabolic adaptation and continue weight loss progress.
Often times, re-feeds or programmed increases in calorie intake, are used as needed or even programmed far in advance to ensure control and accuracy.
Personally, if you are aware of a vacation that is going to occur during a calorie restrictive dieting period, it makes sense to pre-program your re-feed to be during your vacation.
Since vacations are often times for indulgence in food, drink and relaxation, there really isn’t a better time to have a programmed increase in calories. Doing so can provide you and your body with a much needed break from restricting calories.
However, keep in mind that re-feeds are not meant to be cheat meals (or a cheat week in this case). They are programmed increases in calories that are manageable with a focus still being on high quality foods.
Rest assured that a week of bingeing on vacation is certainly different from a re-feed. Enjoy yourself, but do so in moderation.
Tip #5: Focus On Protein And Veggies First
Vacations are often associated with fancy dinners and even lavish desserts.
Along with this comes the temptation to overindulge on different high calorie offerings.
Because temptation such as this can often be too good to pass up, I suggest going along with it, but doing so after you’ve consumed protein and vegetables.
While a simple suggestion, it’s one that many people rarely use to their advantage, even outside of a vacation.
By prioritizing your intake of protein and vegetables, you ensure you get all of the quality nutrients required for your body composition changes. Moreover, these nutrients are very satiating, which means you’ll likely consume fewer calories after, from those higher calorie temptations.
If you do wish to enjoy less than optimal foods after protein and vegetables, you will at least be getting all the nutrients you need first while still being able to enjoy other foods, in moderation with little effort.
5 Tips For Sticking To A Body Composition Plan On Vacation
While vacation is for enjoyment and relaxation, it can often present serious issues if you have a body composition goal.
Using the above tips are my favorite methods for enjoying vacations to their fullest; by only slightly moderating your enjoyment you can still remain within the guidelines of your body transformation plans and goals!