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MISHOWIE SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (10,380)
Posts: 79
2/20/11 10:11 A

So many great ideas here! I believe that you're on vacation, so don't stress too much, but don't pig out like you would in the past. If you've been practicing healthy eating habits, you probably don't want to anyway. One thing you should think about, and what happens sometimes with me after vacation, is prepare yourself to get back into your healthy routine AFTER vacation. It's easy to come home, tired and happy, unpack your suitcase, and forget the things you were doing before you left.

45ANDFIT1 Posts: 1,003
2/20/11 9:28 A

I allow one "vacation" meal a day and the other meals are what I would have at home. Not drinking your calories is important. I try to stick to one glass of wine or champagne, no mixed drinks or beer.

C_LEIGH SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (990)
Posts: 6
2/20/11 9:22 A

Good luck! There are always healthy choices available it's just reminding yourself to make them. I drink tons of water and avoid high calorie booze drinks, the slushy delicious ones, I eat a perfect breakfast and lunch and then allow myself something a little extra during dinner.

HERMIONE22 Posts: 31
2/19/11 11:44 P

My biggest weight-gain hurdle while vacationing is: adult beverages. Whether it's hanging out on the pontoon at the cabin or going to restaurants/clubs/etc., social drinking is a big part of my family and friends' vacationing routine. I try to stick with water or diet soda during the day, and then allow myself to have a couple of drinks at night. Adding a glass of water in between beverages doesn't hurt either. I'm usually a dark beer drinker-- does anyone know of a lower calorie (but still full flavor) drink out there?

FITFINE40 Posts: 821
2/19/11 11:41 P


CRUISEGUY SparkPoints: (36,165)
Fitness Minutes: (24,716)
Posts: 2,619
2/19/11 11:35 P

I agree with the water weight. When on vacation, since I'm eating out more, my sodium intake is higher. When I get home, my weight is always higher than I think it should be. But once I start eating primarily food from home, my sodium intake drops back to normal. Then I lose about 5 pounds of water weight in two days.

DOWN20BYMAY SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (500)
Posts: 17
2/19/11 11:18 P

We go away someplace warm every winter and I have never gained weight once. Have fun!

NANCYPANTS73 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (26,379)
Posts: 239
2/19/11 11:16 P

I haven't read all the comments so I don't know if this has been touched on, but I think much of the 'vacation weight' we gain is water because restaurant food tends to have so much more sodium than our own cooking.

I'm inclined to think that there are plenty of semi-healthy choices on a cruise ship so just make sure you eat sensibly at most meals, eat lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, and drink more water than you usually would. Take advantage of the fitness facilities on board. Knowing you've broken a sweat in the morning will put your mind at ease about having a small helping of dessert.

When you get home give yourself a few days before weighing in again to give your body time to get rid of the excess sodium.

You needn't stress about this. Enjoy yourself, but keep your long term goals in mind.

NYXWOLFWALKER SparkPoints: (168,070)
Fitness Minutes: (200,346)
Posts: 15,176
2/19/11 9:37 P

I've actually never gained weight on vacation, I either stay the same or I louse weight

The last vacation I went on with hubby we both actually lost weight, even the alaskan cruse I was on (7 days) I lost weight during the trip.

I guess if all you do it sit around watch TV, read a book or in short do nothing what so ever but eat you might well gain weight, but if you are active then I don't see how one would gain weight,less your eating in excess.

LOURON SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (7,009)
Posts: 356
2/19/11 8:30 P

I believe in being as active as possible though it is nice to read a good book by the beach. Where there is a buffet eat only the things you wouldn't eat at home.
Make sure you do eat 3-even if they are small meals a day. Sometimes to save money or being too we tend to skip breakfast and/or lunch

2/19/11 7:32 P

How long is the cruise? If it's not too long, then live a little!

IFFUR77 Posts: 556
2/19/11 6:35 P

not sure...while on vacation i really don't think about anything but enjoying myself and weight loss really needs your attention.

MAGGIEROSEBOWL SparkPoints: (42,597)
Fitness Minutes: (41,159)
Posts: 1,377
2/19/11 6:17 P

I wish I knew the answer to this. I have been on a couple of mini-vacations in the last 14 months, and tried my best not to overeat, but it wasn't easy. I have a couple longer vacations planned for the next several months, and know that I need to have a plan. Maybe I can get some pointers here. I know it will involve eating lots of salads with chicken or shrimp and low-fat dressings, and lots of that kind of healthy food at restaurants--at least most of the chains have great healthy choices now. I know that from eating here in town.

SHANNYBEAR13 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (4,735)
Posts: 356
2/19/11 5:39 P

I am going on an all inclusive next week. I am packing some healthy snack bars and whole food/protein bars so I can have those for some snacks instead of hitting the bread or whatever else I could get into. I am also planning on trying to be aactive and looking for opportunities to do so. I am extremely nervous about how much I will gain but I am also going to allow myself to have good time and relax while I am there. If it is only 2 pounds gained when I get back Iwould be very happy with that.

FLOYDSMOM Posts: 121
2/19/11 5:30 P

Almost every vacation locale has physical activity opportunities. Visiting a new place, take a site seeing walk/hike/snowshoe. Enjoy your meals but still try to make healthier choices. A cream sauce may be delicious and tempting, but you can help yourself by asking for half the usual amount of sauce on your dish. Also, no need to forget proper portions, just do your best to eyeball them. And remember, if you over indulge, you can try to compensate with extra activity.

2/19/11 5:12 P

I would agree with everyone as far as taking part in the more active things that they have available on a cruise boat. I also agree not to stress about it too much, but don't lose control over everything you have worked so hard for either.

If you do go to a buffet, fill at least 1/2 plate of veggies/fruit, and grilled lower fat meats/fish (if you are not a vegetarian) before having higher starch and high fat foods. Have a small amount of the things that are not so good for you, but then take a walk around the boat after every meal to rest your food, instead of sitting at the table.

If you are a drinker, limit it to after a certain time, or a predetermined amount of drinks per day (at the very least make sure you have your workout in before indulging in alcohol). Cut hard alcohol with tonic water or cranberry/pineapple/orange juice.

Also, make sure to have a plan for when you get back home. Perhaps waiting 2 full days for recovery before you weigh yourself. Also, make a plan to meet a friend for a walk or at the gym, so you are sure to get back on track soon after you return.

Most of all have fun and enjoy yourself.

JOANELAINE5 Posts: 4,162
2/19/11 2:07 P

Try to only eat at restaurants where they provide nutrition info. on all their foods-on line or provide a paper. Most places do now days. It's harder if you are staying at someone's house and you are at their mercy for the menus. Try to have as much input as you can - go to the grocery store giving them some of your options.

Don't skip meals or snack times. If you don't let yourself gets extra hungry you won't over eat.

Keep your exercising, bootcamp, walking, etc. as much the same as when you are at home.

Only very few can and want to live perfectly.
Occasionally have something different even if it is not one of your healthy choices. It's OK to take a side step as long as you stay on the right road. With regular exercise you will return home maybe 1/2 lb. lighter.

CHARLOTTE1947 SparkPoints: (44,675)
Fitness Minutes: (55,530)
Posts: 1,751
2/19/11 12:17 P

Eat grilled fish entrees and salads where the dressing is served on the side. Snack on fresh fruits and nuts. Exercise. I lost weight on vacation last year.

LOURDESE Posts: 302
2/19/11 10:39 A

We often equate a vacation with 'letting go.' It should be more about relaxation and stressing doing all of those things for yourself, nurturing your healthier self. It's a mental break from work where you tend to relationships and health not a bingefest.

We also think of a vacation as the fruit of our savings not where we go to break the bank. While in Hong Kong, we didn't eat out, we literally make choices like buying fruits and water from grocery store, oatmeal from another market, and main stay foods if we had a takeaway, we split.

It's all about moderation.

SHADDIAZ Posts: 3,982
2/19/11 10:06 A

exercise, buy food from grocery stores, split meals at restaurants or save half

WCSTATEN SparkPoints: (33,029)
Fitness Minutes: (27,801)
Posts: 1,081
2/19/11 9:39 A

Control diet and exercise!

FLOWERGIRL1313 Posts: 16
2/19/11 9:39 A

Stay active! A walk on the beach, a hike, bike ride, anything to get you moving. Make use of the fitness center if you're at a hotel. Watch your portions when dining out but you're on vacation so let yourself splurge on one meal a day. For me that is usually dinner. Most of all have fun and don't beat yourself up over indulging. Remember all you've learned about nutrition and get right back to tracking when you get home.

HOPEFUL38 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (34,461)
Posts: 201
2/19/11 9:12 A

Lots of good comments! I just came back from a 2 week trip to Kenya where I didn't have nutrition info nor much internet for checking Spark People. That being said, I'd say to not stress about it but to follow the guidelines you've learned. I was not as active as usual but was being served more food than usual, so I tried to make conscious decisions about what I was eating / doing as best as I could without letting that control me. I had no idea what to expect weighing myself after that trip but was happy to see that I hadn't gained anything. I am now glad to be back on track but was glad to be able to enjoy my vacation without stressing about calories and weight.

PHDMAMA06 SparkPoints: (93,518)
Fitness Minutes: (105,855)
Posts: 6,334
2/19/11 8:55 A

It is harder to track food on vacation (at least for me) because a lot of the food I run into doesn't have nutritional info. I still right it all down so at least I have that level of accountability. If possible, I'll also take some of my own food so at least I can have healthier options for breakfast or snacks.

Also, key for me has been to STAY ACTIVE. I'll find a place to walk or jog and do some basic strength training moves (that don't need weights or equipment) in my hotel.

2/19/11 8:05 A

Wow, there is a lot of great advice here.

Tell yourself you can have whatever you want, but have sensible portions. Do active things for fun. If you come back and have gained a few pounds, get right back to your regular routine.

On my last vacation, I had whatever I wanted and was surprised that I didn't gain anything, and then I realized that the country I visited served smaller portions than what I get here and even though I felt like I was splurging I wasn't.

MSJWIN Posts: 71
2/19/11 12:41 A

Go on a bike riding tour or walk as much as you can if you are taking taxi or renting a car. Packing healthy snacks and getting a big healthy fiber-filled breakfast always keeps me from tempting local treats.

If I want to get something not so waist-friendly, I share it with others and make sure I divide it evenly or else I can be like PacWoman and eat everything.

JOYOUS111 SparkPoints: (31,426)
Fitness Minutes: (27,038)
Posts: 1,742
2/18/11 11:34 P

I go to a grocery store and stock my hotel room with good breakfast stuff. I have breakfast in my room every morning. starts the day right...I have a salad ALWAYS for lunch and then I enjoy dinner...hell, I;m on vacation....I always workout while on vacation...walking, the gym at the hotel, pool....I use the stairs over the elevator...

BRINDA01 Posts: 461
2/18/11 10:18 P

Make it a very active vacation

IFFUR77 Posts: 556
2/18/11 9:38 P

love to hear your suggestions

LADYANGIE2011 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (3,784)
Posts: 112
2/18/11 6:48 P

Stay active while on vacation and remind myself that it's not a vacation from my healthy lifestyle but a vacation to have fun with my family. I have a vacation everyday I look in the mirror and see the great improvements I've made.

2/18/11 6:47 P

Make sure you eat on a regular schedule as much as possible. With the extra walking around an other efforts, it's easy to forget to eat, and then wind up stuffing yourself with something unhealthly as it's the easist thing to do.

JMUCKINHOUPT SparkPoints: (88,417)
Fitness Minutes: (100,242)
Posts: 485
2/18/11 6:45 P

I like to take my jump rope, and Yoga DVD with me. Then, I try to walk any safe place that I can find. If I don't feel comfortable walking around the hotel, I use their treadmill. I just try to move as much as possible and eat healthy not getting completely obsessed with what I put in my mouth. I do record my food and fitness on my SparkPeople app.

ROFOMOM Posts: 117
2/18/11 6:33 P

I like the "eat well 2 meals and let yourself have a treat for the 3rd" approach.

We always stay active on vacations and try to pack our own snacks or take them along from the continental breakfast.

We usually eat a substantial breakfast.
Eat "on the go for lunch" (granola bars, apples, bananas, nuts)
And then sit down for dinner.

If you are active and indulge sensibly you should be OK.

You HAVE to weigh yourself when you get home and then get back on to your "health" routine the next day!

Even if you gain a pound or two don't let that be a discouragement.

Just get right back on that train!

2/18/11 6:16 P

I would always try to use their gym, or walk around the top deck. :) Enjoy yourself, but I loved the idea where eating sensibly for two meals-then enjoy on the third. Great advice!

JULIEMAX Posts: 244
2/18/11 6:01 P

We go on cruises at least once a year. I just try to eat healthy, if the spa fare appeals to me I have it, sometimes the vegetarian dish and sometimes I just eat whatever. When I do hit the buffett I usually stick to salads or a lean meat entree with veggies. If I want dessert I always pick the sugar free or fruit cup. When I have done this I have not gained any weight. Oh and I make sure I drink plenty of water. emoticon If the pizza is good I may have a slice of it as a meal.

MSNTNKRBLL SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (20)
Posts: 52
2/18/11 4:52 P

For us, Vacation means Disneyland. If there is one place we don't worry about the diet, it's Disneyland! Constant walking, going on the rides, eating on the go...fortunately, Disneyland has tons of great places to eat, menus for every sensibility, many vegetarian options, and lots of fresh fruit wagons placed strategically around the parks. We don't eat at the "fast food" places (we don't like "fast food" at home either), usually pick up healthy snacks and graze our way through the days. We will have ONE sit-down restaurant meal, and always start out each day with a good breakfast (preferably with Goofy!) The only downfall is now there are so many awesome bars at Downtown Disney, it's the cocktails we have to watch out for! NO alcohol is served to the public INSIDE Disneyland itself ("inside the berm") but now you can have a cocktail anywhere else in the Resort complex. No, we don't worry about gaining weight on vacation...maybe just the extra weight in my suitcases for the trip home! emoticon *tink*

SSTAFFORD10 SparkPoints: (3,813)
Fitness Minutes: (6,958)
Posts: 4
2/18/11 3:55 P

I think eating smart at two meals a day and enjoying yourself on the third is the best idea coupled with at least SOME exercise each day. My husband and I walked the deck each morning and that worked just fine. No weight gain!!

MKCC94 Posts: 78
2/18/11 3:41 P

I agree with eating smart two meals per day, thus allowing extra calories for the third meal. I eat my regular high-fiber cereal for breakfast, and fruit and protein for the second meal. Having either lunch or dinner out with drinks still works, as long as you don't completely binge. Choose what really tastes good, and stop eating when you're full. It's better for me to avoid dessert, because calories add up fast with fat and sugar, and you don't get any nutrition! Also, keep up some type of exercise at least 3 days per week.

CRUISEGUY SparkPoints: (36,165)
Fitness Minutes: (24,716)
Posts: 2,619
2/18/11 2:54 P

1. Eat smart at two meals each day, so that you can indulge a little on the third meal and enjoy your vacation. There's plenty of fresh fruits,vegetables and other smart choices on board! If you really want something go for it!
2. Allow yourself a dessert every day, but limit the portion size, and don't eat multiple.
3. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. At least one up and two down. I always go for at least double that.
4. Go for a morning, evening, or after meal walk around the promenade deck or track for at least 30 minutes each day.
5. Walk in the ports, or take an excursion where you will be active.
6. Smim or use the gym!
7. Drink plenty of water. Limit the amount of alcohol and sodas you drink.
8. Dance in the clubs!
9. Keep yourself busy so that you don't do excess snacking, but plan for snacks so that you don't over eat later.
10. Try to plan your meals out for the day. Also, get into your healthy eating habits ahead of time so that you have an idea of what you can eat without gaining!

Relax and enjoy yourself! You're on vacation.

We also have a Cruise Critic Spark Team. It's been quiet the last couple months, but we've been working to liven it up the past couple weeks!

CPANTS52 Posts: 182
2/18/11 2:53 P

Last time I went on a cruise, I often had their healthier or "spa" fare, which they indicated on the menu. Also, I found it was better for me to go sit in the dining room for most meals, and skip the buffet style dining except for a veggies and protein snack. Going to the dining room over having the more casual buffet style option will allow you to ask for special things, or for your food to be prepared a certain way...and its still super yummy!

BEARCLAW6 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (15,376)
Posts: 1,939
2/18/11 2:48 P

I was travelling over Christmas break and did my best to stay true to my diet plan. This meant that I ate a lot of restaurant salads and got a few meals out of a grocery store. I didn't do anything to keep up physical activity, but I was pretty active anyway. I lost three lbs!

A note about those free breakfasts at hotels and motels....just because it is free, you don't have to eat everything! You are fully aware that they typical American diet is garbage, but you don't have to eat that way when options are limited.

SPARKLEYSHINE SparkPoints: (29,927)
Fitness Minutes: (4,899)
Posts: 732
2/18/11 2:16 P

Try to plan your meal ideas ahead. If you go to they have a wonderful forum of people that can help you with what is currently being served on the cuise line you are using. They usually have a 'spa menu' that is much healthier.

Some tips:

Beware of the bread basket emoticon
Find the gym if you like or run/walk on deck.
Choose excursions where you can be active.
Take it easy at the midnight buffet emoticon

You will have a great time and can keep the pounds off doning it! Have a great cruise!

Edited by: SPARKLEYSHINE at: 2/18/2011 (14:17)
2/18/11 2:10 P

In future, try alternatives to cruises such as a week at Aspen skiing or something along those lines.

Edited by: BILLKIDNEY at: 2/18/2011 (14:10)
ALIHIKES Posts: 4,456
2/18/11 1:07 P

Try to make healthy food choices and eat lots of fruits and veggies (smaller portions of higher calorie foods), and take advantage of exercise facilities like the pool and gym. Personally I would set a goal of not gaining too much, and not stress about being perfect.

AHMARROSE SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (66,815)
Posts: 13,873
2/18/11 12:57 P

say to yourself you can do it and you will do it . Try to eat healthy food

AMMO-JULES Posts: 15
2/18/11 12:55 P

I am like you when it comes to the cruises abundance of food. But I have to agree with the other posts on here...enjoy yourself and take advantage of the excursions to burn off some of the calories! Enjoy!!

CHOCOCOYOTE SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 1,197
2/18/11 12:35 P

I want to echo "need to move". It's 1-2 weeks of your year, and you can refocus when you get back.

If you are stressed, or denying yourself, then you may not enjoy the trip as much as you should.

Another thing is that you probably will be pretty active, though I"ve never been on a cruise. I assume they have pools, but don't they also have dancing? Gyms? running tracks? and even sometimes exercise classes on deck?

I think it would be wonderful to run around the ship (if they let you) and watch the ocean. Far better than me running and wtching the school building at our local track. :-)

ENJOY and i'm envious.

YELLOWDAHLIA SparkPoints: (94,861)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
Posts: 13,413
2/18/11 12:26 P

When I go on vacations my goal is to do my best to maintain my weight. And if I gain a pound or two- not a huge deal.

I would never go on vacation with the expectation of losing weight- for me that would be NO fun.

Also, try to focus on all the fun non-food (calorie burning) things you can do while cruising.

Have a great trip!

NEED2MOVE2 Posts: 1,463
2/18/11 12:06 P

I know how you feel.. last year I went to Mexico and I was so scared of gaining weight... I can honestly say once there.. I never gave a calorie a second thought.. I gained 2 pounds. Enjoy your self .. if you gain a few pounds you can get them off.

WHARROWER SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (612)
Posts: 1
2/18/11 11:58 A

We are going on a cruise in April. I am already stressing about gaining weight. In the past cruises have been a time to "gorge" 24/7 on food. I have been trying to get weight of since Jan. and been exercising and doing very well. My daughter getting married in June. I am so worried about all the temptations that will surround me 24/7. But - I also don't want to be so possessed that I cannot enjoy myself.

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