January 29, 2014
Another day, another airport. Nashville, Tennessee. Melbourne, Florida. Hartford, Connecticut. Boston, Massachusetts. That was my January. And that’s the life of an entrepreneur. Growing the business means being on the road, but it makes my New Year’s resolutions all that much more difficult. Working out? Sure, totally normal to do squats and burpees in the airport lounge. Eating healthy? No problem. I’ll grab a side salad with my fried chicken at the T-Gate Popeye’s in the Atlanta airport.
Sigh. If keep this up, I’ll hit that 20 pound goal shortly. Just 20 up instead of down. So what’s an entrepreneur to do? I turned to my fellow road warriors for their help and advice.
The overwhelming suggestion? Water and snacks. Nothing is dryer and more energy-sucking than recycled airplane air. Pack your own flat water bottle and refill at airport fountains. And let’s be honest, those little bags of pretzels are far from nutritious. Suggested snacks? Protein or snack bars, avocados, almonds, hemp or flax seeds and fruit.
Crafty road warriors like Andrew Angus, the founder and CEO of SwitchVideo make their own healthy snacks on the road.
“I keep a magic bullet in my luggage so I can make a smoothie anywhere I go,” he says. “I buy the best ingredients I can, and I travel with protein powder.”
But eating is just one component of healthy travel. Sitting all day in airports and meetings is bad for your health and your back. Some road warriors recommend packing bathing suits (many hotels have pools), or traveling with elastic or resistance bands that take up little space in your suitcase. Compression socks are a go-to for me on on flights over four hours and in-seat leg exercises may seem odd, but they’re essential.
Trying to pack for exercise? If your sneakers take too much room, Ministry of Supply co-founder Aman Advani suggests leaving them behind:
“Many consultants go to the same site week after week – leave your running shoes and a few pairs of athletic clothes at the hotel in a small bag (they’ll gladly hold it for the weekend) – that way, you’re not lugging it back and forth.”
Others suggest working with the hotel concierge to map the best runs, or using fitness apps to save favorite workouts and runs for return trips. But for cold weather, hotels without gyms, or for when you’re short on time or equipment, Aron Schoenfeld, founder of Do It In Person, recommends creating a specialized workout.
“Work with a trainer or someone to design a quick workout program that can be done in a hotel room or gym, regardless of equipment.”
It’s also important to remember to sleep. Travel often means catching up with friends or colleagues or taking advantage of hotel amenities. Set a specific sleep time every night, and stick to it, even if it means cutting off socializing.
And when you are home, take full advantage. Since I’m off the road all week this week, I used Sunday to food shop and plan the family meals for the week focusing on lots of protein and vegetables that are harder to find on the road. I also planned my workout schedule for the week ensuring I get some quality time in at the gym and my hometown yoga studio.
That doesn’t mean next week you won’t find me with a cocktail and a bevy of Biscoff cookies in the Delta lounge. Just don’t laugh if I get up to do some lunges, too.
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