I’m in LA to attend the Perform Better Functional Training Summit and like most people who follow a strict strength and conditioning program, I was concerned about the long travel time it takes to get here. You not only lose a day of training but you’re also cramped in a small space with limited choices for activities. Unless you’re flying first or business class, most likely your legs and hips will be screaming at you for being stuck in a seated position for so long. Aside from the limited activities, there’s also the limited eating choices that we have on planes and airports.
However there are ways and means to go about traveling and making the most out of what you have around you. It might not be advisable to walk around too much on a plane because you’ll look suspicious but there are still some ways to hack your trip so that you don’t mess things up.
Here’s your travel checklist according to Mark Verstegen, world renowned athletic trainer and author of one of my favorite training books, Everyday is Gameday. I’ve been following Mark’s work for almost a decade already and he’s a no nonsense kind of guy who gets the job done. Exhibit A: his hand on training the current World Cup champions, Germany. He thinks of everything that might affect your performance and he makes sure that you are prepared for everything. Here’s his list of travel essentials and some pretty awesome travel tips as well.
Shaker bottle (for shakes)
Water container or bottled water
Green tea bags
High-fiber cereal, granola bars, or bars of choice
Shake packets, shake packet of choice, or 100 percent whey protein in a ziplock bag
Nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and high-fiber cereal mix
Individual servings of natural peanut butter
Fresh fruit and veggies (apple, banana, orange, carrots)
Beef jerky, hard-boiled eggs, or low-fat cheese
Sandwiches (pita, tortillas, bread)
Whole grain crackers (must have at least 3 grams of fiber)
(Note: ziplock bags and plastic utensils should always be in stock in your kitchen.)
Smart travel reminders
- Don’t skip meals: you must eat every three hours.
- Bring bags and shakes: these are great for light fueling and pre/post workout nutrition.
- Make sure there is a lean protein choice with each meal: grilled chicken, fillet of beef, grilled fish, grilled pork, turkey, ham, and roast beef are great on sandwiches. Avoid anything fried.
- Add your grains, wholesome carbs, fruits and veggies: add baked potato, rice, pasta, whole wheat bread, fresh fruit or veggies to every meal.
- Stay hydrated! Drink 1/2 to 1 ounce per pound of body weight per day. This is especially important with air travel. Aim to drink about 8 ounce of fluid every hour on the plane
- Hunt at the airport: amidst all of the restaurants at the airport, search out the sandwich shops and the kiosks. You can build a great sandwich or salad and final trail mix, nuts, bars, and water at any kiosk or airport store.
- Write it down: if you have problems keeping your travel nutrition in check, take a small notebook with you when you travel and journal what you eat and drink during the trip.
Mark’s book Everyday is Gameday is available now in Fully Booked.