Holiday Traveling Tips
Traveling over the holidays as a post-op bariatric surgery patient
Hitting the road?
Are you hitting the road or the sky to celebrate the holidays? As if you don’t have enough to think through with your packing lists and your Christmas presents and what food you’re adding to the meal…you also have to thinking through your food strategy when you’re away from your home turf.
In my family we rotate the holidays and the years we are gone for Christmas means a week at someone else’s house. I’m trying to think through what food I should bring for the kids as much as for myself. It’s a lot to to expect my hostess to feed us for every single meal! And the easiest meals to make for a lot of people end up being spaghetti, pizza, tacos.
The big holiday meal aside, you have several other meals to consider! Plus, it can be hard to know what grocery stores will be open when you get there, how busy they are going to be or what other plans the family has that would interfere with you getting to the grocery store.
Consider the barriers
These are all the questions to consider. Similar to my lesson on mind mapping, I recommend putting pen to paper. What day will you arrive. How many meals will you be out of town for. How many meals will you be traveling for? Then consider the barriers just like what I’ve listed. Will you be able to get to the store when you arrive? What are you able to pack?
Members have shared that they pack things like tuna packets, protein bars, shakes and water flavors. I do recommend bringing a good water bottle with your name on it. It’s amazing how easy it is to forget water when you’re out of the normal routine!
Another question to consider, does whomever you’re staying with have room in their refrigerator? Have you talked to them about it? Writing out the barriers can help you see the solutions or at least see who you need to talk to for more information before you travel.
Work together with family to make a plan
This year, I made a plan with my sister-in-law to send her my list of perishable items and she will add it to her grocery pickup order. Then I will venmo her my grocery money. How great is that?! She will have food waiting for my family of four.
I also find it helpful to offer to make one meal if you can. This is a really kind thing to do but also guarantees you a meal you know you can eat, plus you can make plenty to know you’ll have leftovers to eat while you’re there. If you do grocery shop when you arrive, meals like rotisserie chicken or pre-cooked chicken sausage links can help cover you if everyone else is eating pizza, again but you don’t want to cook a meal.
Some meals you will be able to make work. You can eat the marinara meat sauce from spaghetti night or make a taco salad and skip the tortillas. Even leftovers from the big meal you can have the turkey and ham. The point is to map out how many meals you’ll be there and how you can set yourself up for food availability. This does not make you high maintenance by the way. Consider people with severe food allergies. They cannot travel and take a chance on what food is available, they have to plan their food as much as their clothing!
Consider meal times and different schedules
One other thought from personal experience is to consider the food schedule of the family you’ll be with. Some families eat way later than you’re used to. You might know this about them.
I have family that tends to skip lunch, put out munchies in the afternoon and then maybe think of dinner at the time that I’m usually eating dinner by. I know this about them and I know to put my own food in the refrigerator and not be bashful about feeding my kids and myself at our normal times, even if no one else is.
It’s okay to stick your routine even if you’re out of sync with everyone else! Remember all the resources you have with Uber to get you to the store, InstaCart to delivery your groceries or Walmart Pickup to grab your items quickly.
There are so many ways to get the food you need, it’s whatever makes sense for you and your family. I’m wishing you all my best in the holiday season and safety in you travels!