Let me preface this post with something. When you are on vacation, you should enjoy your vacation. You should’t be worrying about eating perfectly healthy or going to the gym.
The purpose of this post is to give you some tricks to stay on track in an airport when you might otherwise feel unprepared. If you’re not prepared, you will be caught by the smell of a cinnamon roll wafting towards you in Terminal C. It’s not your fault. They do it on purpose. Now, if cinnamon rolls are something you LOVE and look forward to at the airport, have at it. Enjoy that cinnamon roll. BUT if you’re only going to grab that thing because you are starving and you have nothing else to snack on but overpriced trail mix from terminal shop? Then that’s a different story.
Four Tips for Healthy Air Travel
1. Bring an empty water bottle.
Hydration is key when flying. The air is dry and the days are long. Don’t let yourself get dehydrated. Did you know that you don’t have to spend money (& waste plastic) to stay hydrated in an airport? Almost all airports have bottle filling stations near the water fountains. It’s filtered, it’s free and you can take as much as you want. Just make sure your bottle is empty before you go through security or you will have to do some chugging.
2. Pack snacks (or entire meals).
This is a no brainer. You will not only have some healthy, easy options in your bag, but you will also save LOTS of money. I recently flew to Vancouver and looked at the prices of some of the snacks in the airport and it’s INSANE. I think people forget that food is allowed to go through security. As long as it’s considered a “solid food”, you are good to go. What exactly is “solid” may be up to the discretion of the TSA agent, but most foods are going to be ok. You can pack a sandwich or even tupperware full of pasta! I wouldn’t suggest anything that you need to heat up or anything smelly. If you pack tuna salad, you will get stared down by your fellow passengers. Protein bars, crackers, veggies, pasta salad or even a PB&J are all going to be better options than airport food.
3. Walk the airport.
Skip the moving sidewalks (unless you’re short on time.) You don’t have to walk to your gate and then sit there for hours. Get up and move. At the Atlanta airport, there is a train that takes you between terminals that I NEVER use. You can walk right next to the train and get your blood pumping a bit. That will help if you have a long flight ahead.
4. Choose the aisle seat.
There are two reasons why. First, you will be way more likely to get up and stretch during your flight. Your body will thank you. If you’ve ever arrived at your destination and noticed your feet are so swollen you can barely put your shoes back on, that means you didn’t move enough. The other reason is related to tip #1. If you’re on the aisle, you will be less likely to feel guilty getting up to go use the bathroom which will in turn allow you to drink more water. I’ve been terrible about this in the past. I’ve been known to dehydrate myself so I won’t have to ask the person next to me to move. Not advised.
That’s it! Let me know in the comments if you have any other tips for healthy air travel.
There will be a part 2 to this post coming soon. It will include general healthy travel tips that don’t involve airports! Check back soon!