Vacation eating

So, regarding our vacation, we are going to be gone to Disney World for 6 days. Ish asked a question that I figured other people might have as well about eating while on vacation.

Out of curiosity, how do you handle the urge to splurge on food when you are traveling? Do you get hit with that, “Well I’m on vacation so it’s ok to have….” impulse, or are you immune to it now? I always have a hard time when pulled out of my regular environment. It just makes me feel like it’s ok to go overboard, even when I know it is not and I will pay for it later!


I started to answer in the comment, but the realized it was going to be a very long-winded answer.  😳

The short answer is “It depends”.  First off, we don’t really vacation very often.  The last time John and I traveled was at the end of 2010 when we went to visit his family in Colorado.  That trip I was more concerned about eating because when we visit his family, we eat out a lot and they are not usually places that are easy to eat on the lighter side (and not much exercise).  That makes it hard.

I am certainly not immune to the pull of ‘vacation food.’  Heck, I have trouble being immune to peanut butter cups at my sister’s house!

When we go to New Orleans, all bets are off on food.  No restrictions at all there because it is a wonderful city to eat in – especially if you are a foodie.  I eat there whatever I want, knowing that I am going to have to take off weight after  a trip there. And I am okay with that.

For Disney, we aren’t going there for the food.  Let’s face it – large volume theme park food is not going to be gourmet.  The great thing about Disney, though, is that there are plenty of opportunities to eat very healthy there.  It’s just a matter of choosing those options.  I am more conscious about eating on a longer trip because I could do some serious damage in 6 days of eating whatever fell onto my plate.  I do have a plan for this week, which is going to be normal breakfasts of oats or eggs with fruit, and a lighter lunch.  John and I looked online at places to eat to make sure we can get things that aren’t so far removed from how we usually eat and have sort of a plan of which places to go to in the various parks.  That helps so we don’t walk into the first deep fried chicken nugget basket we find.

If you do plan on going to any Disney park some time, check out All Ears.Net.  They have current menus and pricing for pretty much all the restaurants and eateries, which has been a great help when trying to stay on a healthier track, or budget track for that matter.  Also, they have healthy options for snacks in all the parks, like fresh fruit, frozen yogurt, frozen fruit bars, popcorn.  Although I do tend to like my afternoon lattes.

The best link on that site?  Where to find real coffee at Disney  :mrgreen:  You know I am printing that list out.

So, I don’t plan on snacking my way through Disney.  We will certainly be doing a lot of walking, so I am not that concerned about having some treats in there.  I just have to be careful not to go overboard.  I do tend to expect I will have weight gain from vacations.  Not always because of eating choices, but because of the food being different from what we normally eat.  It usually has more sodium than we consume, so I always get travel bloat.

So, long answer is that yes, I do find I want to just splurge on food on vacation.  I just have to find a way to compromise with it and not make it every meal.

And what if it happens where all my good eating intentions go to hell?  It  is okay.  It’s just so not worth it to beat yourself up over food.  It’s just not.  If I am going to gain weight from something, I damn well better enjoy eating it.


Be Sociable, Share!

25 thoughts on “Vacation eating

  1. Marianne

    Hi Lori, hope you have a great time on your vacation to the Magic Kingdom. It is funny I live only 20 minutes away from the parks and hardly ever go. It is quite expensive. We are having wonderful weather here today it was at least 80* and I had the a/c on!! Enjoy your time in Orlando and I can’t wait to see some pictures.

  2. Lisa

    I think you should just enjoy yourself. You’ll be doing so much walking you’ll at least come out even, right?

    I tend to eat more on vacation–not necessarily quantity but in types of food I normally skip. Like we went to Bend last weekend and I drank a bunch of beer (by a “bunch” I mean probably 3 beers instead of just 2 :P) but I also went snowshoeing twice! I burned it off. 🙂

    Have a great trip!
    Lisa´s last blog post ..72 Inches in 72 Hours

  3. Rachel

    We ate and drank our way through Disney but (a) it was our honeymoon and (b) it was the Food & Wine Festival at Epcot. I usually just give in and deal with the consequences later when I’m on vacation. I sure wish I had known about those resources you mentioned when we were going! Rainforest Cafe at Animal Kingdom is a good place to go for breakfast because you can eat pretty healthy and the portions are large. We never really splurged too much on lunch because of breakfast. And we went every day b/c Rainforest Cafe is outside of the Animal Kingdom so you don’t need a ticket to eat there!
    Rachel´s last blog post ..Cupcakes for Dinner ~Rachel

  4. debby

    I couldn’t have said it better myself! LOL at “Heck, I have trouble being immune to peanut butter cups at my sister’s house!” and totally agree with ” It’s just a matter of choosing those options.” There are almost always options. I just have a hard time choosing them sometimes. And other times, its a no-brainer. Literally…

    Have a great time, Lori! I think some of your ‘pre’ pictures are from Disney, aren’t they? It will be fun to have side-by-side comparison pics on your return!
    debby´s last blog post ..Creativity

  5. Kimberley

    Awareness and the lack of beating yourself up over food are splendid!!! This way you can enjoy yourself and not feel guilty about anything. Very balanced approach.
    Kimberley´s last blog post ..Atkins Day 55

  6. Alison

    You are going to have such a wonderful time – and a great time of year to be down South!

    Last year when I went to Mexico, I ate whatever I wanted (all buffets, all the time) and drank a lot of fruity drinks. At the end of the 8 days though, I think I only put on 2 pounds, which was totally worth the indulgence!! You’ll be doing a lot of walking and moving around which will help. But yes, stay away from the fried nugget houses!! 😉
    Alison´s last blog post ..Busy-ness Begins Anew

  7. Melisa

    Great post! I find I’m the same way – how I eat (and much weight I gain) depends on the vacation. If it’s worth it…bring on the food! But if not, I try to practice moderation and not get swept up by the vacation mentality. I hope you guys have a fabulous time on your trip – take lots of pictures!
    Melisa´s last blog post ..Chicken dinner and some new clothes

  8. Fran

    I never really think about food when going on vacation. The last couple of years I came home same weight as I left. Especially when we’re in Italy we walk a lot and Italian food can be very healthy but oh so tasty. I think vacations are also meant to let go a little. If you constantly worry about your food, you are ruining your vacation.

    Conclusion: I think you are going to be okay with the food, your plan sounds good. Now all I hope is that you find a good coffee place otherwise John is traveling with Grumpy 🙂
    Fran´s last blog post ..Wednesday January 25 – 2012, The workout edition

  9. Amy

    I agree 100% with your approach – do a bit of planning ahead so you know where you can find friendly food, but at the same time be prepared to be kind to yourself if you end up eating things you probably wouldn’t eat at home. And focus on enjoying your trip! That’s exactly what I try to do.
    Have a great time – I really could use some Florida sunshine right now – wish I was going with you!

  10. Satu

    This is a good topic.

    When I travel/vacation, all bets about food are off. I don’t usually stress over it because I travel so rarely and any excess weight disappears in a week or two when I get back to my normal life.

    Since I discovered intuitive eating I’ve started wondering whether the “all bets are off” eating happens because I’m usually too restrictive about eating.
    Satu´s last blog post ..Healthy Lifestyle Stress?

  11. Miz

    besides the fact Im jealous (we have canceled 5 disney trips in the 6 yrs the child has been alive) Im apparently old.
    I now wanna admonish you 🙂 and say DONT TELL US YOURE TRAVELING!! Unless someone is for sure house sitting etc and you arent leaving things vacant.

    I told you Im old! 🙂
    Miz´s last blog post ..Listen to your gut. Please. (guest post)

    1. Lori Post author

      Yes – someone is watching the house. We have the kitty that needs attending to! We don’t board her, so someone has to be there to feed and *ahem* tidy up after her.

  12. Cammy@TippyToeDiet

    We share vacation sensibilities. I used to be more strict on eating when I went on vacation but after reading a blogger who went to France and praised herself for staying “on plan” (not even a nibble of a croissant) the whole time, I changed my tune. Now I try to keep an eye on portions, but I do enjoy the local foods.

    The good thing about Disney is that the junky/snacky items are so expensive as to provide a whole different kind of deterrent. 🙂
    Cammy@TippyToeDiet´s last blog post ..Win a Home Gym

  13. SlimKatie @ Runs for Cookies

    Love this post!! I think it’s very wise to think about what kind of vacation you’re planning (i.e. New Orleans vs. Disney) when you make plans how to eat. I agree, there are some vacations that are worth putting on a few pounds! 😉
    SlimKatie @ Runs for Cookies´s last blog post ..The big 3-0

  14. Jody - Fit at 54

    I was like Carla & I never tell people when I am gone even for a day… meaning on the social media sites. We have been burglarized (before my social media days) & it sticks with you forever!

    Anyway, sounds like you have it figured out & you have a great attitude & that is what counts! I know that even if it goes to hell, you will get back to it so looks good! 🙂

    Does Pixie snub you after you come back from being away cause she is mad at you??? 😉
    Jody – Fit at 54´s last blog post ..The 65 Pound Soda!

  15. Helen

    We use a house sitter too, and we don’t have pets! Just makes for peace of mind.

    I’ve done the thing where you splurge like crazy and usually about 3 days in I never want to eat again! So now, I generally splurge on a couple of really great meals. The rest of the time I might in fact be eating things I wouldn’t eat at home but I also pratice portion control and listening to my hunger.

    Also? I refuse to get on a scale at least two weeks after a vacation. I just feel with the extra meals out, the travel, etc. I want to give my body time to get back into its groove.
    Helen´s last blog post ..Have Your Protein and Eat it Too – Without Meat!

  16. Ang

    I actually lost weight when we went to Disney and while I didn’t go crazy with the food I didn’t take too much care to be healthy either. I would love to go back because they are said to be very accomodating of gluten free diets! That is the hardest part of traveling…eating the wrong thing and ruining a whole day!
    Ang´s last blog post ..A New Favorite Restaurant

  17. Jenn@slim-shoppin

    I know you will do great. I don’t go on vacation that often either, but I remember after losing weight and making goal with weight watchers, we went the the Wisconsin Dells for 4 days. I ate whatever I wanted – gained 5 pounds, but it was off in 2 weeks and I was glad I splurged!

    You’ve been at this for a while, so I’m sure you guys will do great – so jealous – have a great time!

  18. Joanne

    A very healthy way to plan a trip and stay on track.
    When we travel, I try to stick with meals along the same lines as what I eat at home unless there is something that I KNOW I can’t get where we live OR that I’d never even try to make.

Comments are closed.