I flew yesterday for the first time in 16 months and from beginning to end, it was a 12 hour expedition in an airport or on a plane. Living a plant-based lifestyle, traveling presents a fun opportunity to figure out how to eat healthy. Here I share how I planned and executed a healthy day of eating in transit from Safety Harbor, Florida to Erie, Pennsylvania to visit my brother, Brian, and sister in-law, Linda. I also explain what I ate on day one of the get-away in Erie…oh it was awesome!
I’m a planner in some respects, especially when food is involved so the first thing I considered when preparing for the travel day was when I would eat my meals. My first flight left at 1:50 PM, stopping in Charlotte, North Carolina where I had a long layover until my 8:56 PM connecting flight to Erie targeting a 10:37 PM arrival.
After a bike ride Sunday morning I wasn’t very hungry after a big Saturday night dinner so I delayed my breakfast cereal bowl till 10:00 AM followed by avocado toast around 11:00 AM. After that I was stuffed so I knew I could make it to Charlotte for a late lunch or early dinner.
If I did get hungry on the flight I packed a couple bananas, a few bags of raw almonds, and Lara Bars. These could bridge me to any meal for the entire trip so I packed a lot. When I arrived in Charlotte I was hungry and began my search for plant-based options. To my surprise, the airport didn’t have my typical fallback option of Chipotle…usually found everywhere. I searched the directory board and found a juice bar restaurant called, Red Mango, who offered smoothies and acai bowls. I ordered an acai bowl and devoured it quite quickly. It wasn’t great but wasn’t bad either and satisfied my hunger sensation.
I had four hours till my flight to Erie so I kept busy working on training plans for my team. The time went by fast and before I knew it, I had another hunger urge. I wasn’t sure Auntie Anne’s had vegan options so I searched online and found out they did by special request so I ventured over to the counter and asked. To make their traditional pretzel vegan all you have to ask for is have it prepared without the butter. They told me it would take 10 minutes to make and I was fine with that. It came out smokin’ hot and it satisfied my second hunger urge nicely.
I can make any situation work regarding finding something I can eat and if there weren’t any options it would have been a great opportunity to make it a fasting day until Tuesday morning where I could get food. On the flight to Erie I had a Lara Bar and that held me over till Monday morning where my brother had already stocked his house with my cereal…what a brother! I added raspberries, banana, agave and almond milk and I felt like I was at home.
We then headed to Cleveland to check out the West Side Market and stopped at one of their favorite restaurants, Aladdin’s, to score vegan food and it was fantastic! I had a falafel and hummus wrap and a lentil soup & chili combination. At the market I picked up blueberries and avocados for the morning breakfast and snack.
For dinner Monday night, Brian had prepared a Black Bean Enchilada Bake over the weekend that was outstanding! I was stuffed and fueled with two super foods to fuel my Tuesday morning run…black beans and sweet potatoes.
Traveling and eating healthy, including spending almost a full day in an airport or airplane most certainly can be done. A little preparation on the front-end and the use of Google to find options on-the-go works! And when arriving at a destination far from home and having a family not only supportive of someone on a plant-based lifestyle but living one as well helps. But even if my brother and sister in-law didn’t eat plant-based we would make it work finding options for all.
Save the animals, save the planet, and promote health on a plant-based lifestyle.
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