What is it about traveling that completely derails an otherwise healthy diet?

Maybe it’s the break from your typical routine. Or maybe it’s the fact that we’re not around people who make us feel accountable. It could just be the vacation vibes that get us lining up for that second pina colada. Whatever it is, it’s real.

The five pounds that appear after every trip act as a reminder that we’ve gone off course. Yet again.

So, how do you combat the urge to stray from a healthy diet when traveling?

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Here are a few targeted tips to help improve your diet while traveling.

1. Prepare in advance

If you want to stay on track during your trip, it’s important to start on the right foot. That means getting through the airport without stopping for a coffee and a bagel. Or a sweet treat.

We all have our vices, but you’ll want to avoid veering from your diet so soon. Pack some healthy snacks for the airport and flight that can keep you full and satisfied until you get to your destination.

2. Research your food options

While traveling, you’ll probably have to have to eat at a few restaurants. It’s not ideal, but you can still stay on track if you make the right choices. Try to find restaurants with healthier options around your hotel.

Review the room service menu to see what you could get in a pinch. It’s best to come prepared. This way, you aren’t making rash decisions while your stomach is growling. Those are never the best dietary decisions.

3. Shop farmer’s markets

If you have the opportunity to cook while you’re on the road, definitely take advantage. Not only will this be cheaper, but it will also be healthier than eating out. Shop farmer’s markets and local grocery stores to find fresh ingredients to build your meals.

And even if you can’t cook during your travels, you may be able to benefit from farmer’s markets and grocery stores. These are great places to buy healthy premade meals and snacks that you can eat throughout your trip.

4. Have patience with yourself

When you’re traveling, you may not be able to follow your ideal diet to the letter. This is especially true if your ideal diet involves juicing or smoothies. But that doesn’t mean you should throw your hands up and stuff cupcakes in your mouth.Find the closest alternative to the things you would usually eat or drink, and you’ll be much better off.

For example, if you’re missing out on a juice or smoothie, consider stocking up on a healthy powdered green drink that you can make anywhere.

5. Cut back on happy hours

If your goal is to lose weight and become a healthier version of yourself, you’ve got to cut back on those happy hours. Alcohol is not your friend here.

With alcohol, you’ll pack on the extra calories and deplete your body of essential nutrients. These are not conducive to anyone’s health goals. So, try to drink in moderation during your travels. This may be a challenge for many reasons, but you can overcome.

If you often travel for business trips and must attend networking happy hours, stick with one alcoholic beverage and then switch to water or club soda. And if you have trouble cutting back at all, this may signal an alcohol problem. Seek help for alcohol addiction before it’s too late.

If you want to change your habits, one of the most important things you can do is change your mindset. The tips outlined here will be extremely helpful, but you first have to reframe the way you think about your diet on the road.

Before you leave, plan your meals, and research healthy restaurants to start reframing your thoughts. If you create a roadmap for healthy eating on your travels, you’ll be much more likely to stick to the plan.

It’s very possible to stay on your diet while traveling, and this is true whether you’re on vacation or a business trip. Plan for success and keep a positive attitude. You can do this!

Trevor McDonald

Trevor is a freelance writer and recovering addict & alcoholic who's been clean and sober for over 5 years. Since his recovery began, he has enjoyed using his talent for words to help spread treatment resources, addiction awareness, and general health knowledge. In his free time, you can find him working with recovering addicts or outside enjoying about any type of fitness activity imaginable.