When trying to eat healthy, cooking your own meals is definitely the way to go. But what about the times when you are running around like a chicken with its head cut off, perhaps without a lot of time, or traveling somewhere…or whatever. We all face these kind of challenges once in a while and to me personally, there is nothing more annoying that eating an unhealthy meal, that makes you feel horrible about yourself, especially when it was due to the circumstances (vs intentionally pigging out which we all need once in a while!). This is why I have made it one of my missions to find healthy food alternatives when on the run or on the road. Because of my “real” job, I spend a lot of hours driving around and traveling between Fresno and the Bay and Fresno and Bakersfield. Eating healthy on the road isn’t easy, but I think that I’ve found some pretty decent options that I am constantly relying on:
- Starbucks Salads: In case you didn’t know, Starbucks sells more than just coffee and pastries. A lot of their locations also offer warm sandwiches, bistro boxes and salads. When I am on the road, Starbucks is one of my usual stops, not just for my morning coffee, but for my lunch healthy meal as well. My personal favorites are the Zesty Chicken and Black Bean Salad Bowl and the Hearty Veggie and Brown Rice Bowl. They are not only both very YUMMY, but they are also pre-portioned controlled for you as well. I usually don’t use the dressing that comes with them and eat them dry, but even if you put in a little bit of dressing in the salad, they are still a good low calories, high fiber alternative. I usually pair them with a banana or a small bag of popcorn and a Venti cup of water.
- Subway Chopped Salad: I am not a big fan of Subway’s meat options (they look kind of fake to me) but when on rush, adding them to their Chopped Salads is a great alternative. When I eat at Subway, I order my salad loaded up with all the veggies. I also ask for tons of lettuce and spinach and for oil and vinegar mixed in. They are really delish and filling. I also make sure to get a large cup for unsweetened iced tea and sometimes I even indulge on a bag of Baked Lay’s
- Carl’s Junior All Natural Burger Wrapped in Lettuce: This option almost makes me feel like I am cheating. I love that their meat has no steroids, no added hormones or antibiotics and it tastes amazing!!!!!!!!!!! I usually order my All Natural Burger without mayo and wrapped in lettuce and a side salad. I also order a large cup of water and leave the drive thru feeling so exciting. This burger is so good that I rarely leave the parking lot without eating it right there. Carl’s Jr also has Turkey Burger options that I eat sometimes.
At the end of the day you will always be better something that you prepared. But it is also good to have “emergency” options just in case. I always make sure I pack an apple of a banana to make sure I pick right when I get hungry in the middle of nowhere, but even when you are driving and snack-less there is no excuse to throw your diet out the window. Sometimes I just stop at a local supermarket and grab some fruit and some tuna…THERE ARE ALWAYS BETTER OPTIONS THAN A BIG MAC, I promise 🙂
What are some of your “emergency” healthy to go places?
She lives in Fresno with her husband and two Boston Terriers, Babushka and Bambino who like to run after soccer balls just like their dad.