This was the second major road trip that my boyfriend and I have taken in 2021. This time we drove from Nashville, TN through North Carolina, South Carolina, and back to Central Florida. We were on the road for a total of seven days. That was a lot of time during that week thinking about food! Navigating eating three meals a day from various restaurants that you’ve never been to before can be challenging. I still want to feel good while on vacation and I know I have no control of how my meals are prepared. Having said that, eating on a trip since restriction is no longer a part of my life there were still some very eye-opening thoughts and feelings that I experienced last week. I did my best. I made a choice to travel and see the country, I made a choice to take a break from my daily responsibility of cooking for myself and my boyfriend. So, I was also going to make a choice to not freak out over my options or sometimes lack thereof. I absolutely enjoyed our trip and ate foods that made my body happy when I could. I even found a few amazing doughnut shops which I will list at the end.
I feel like this topic can be misconstrued for people who have “Ditched Diet Culture” that doesn’t mean thinking about food goes away or choosing foods to eat that make our bodies feel our best. We have already come to grips with the fact that our bodies process all foods differently and I choose not to eat those types of food that make me feel sluggish or cause painful bloating. How in the world are you supposed to enjoy your vacation on the hotel toilet? I’m being completely honest with you. Telling you that I eat whatever I want without guilt or punishing myself is very true but so is knowing that some foods still make me feel like crap or, even better, don’t even sound good to me! I have traveled through every stage of my different weights and one thing has always been a real downer for me and that’s eating on vacation with all of that inner chatter in your head. It really takes away from your experience.
I get it that the topic of vacation eating looks different for everyone, for couples or families or if you are lucky enough to travel somewhere by yourself! But food as we all know is something we have to think about every single day and to throw a plethora of options at yourself can be overwhelming. Dousing it with shame or guilt is the part we can choose to look at differently. I’ve also learned that traveling on a budget greatly affects the types of places you dine in but it doesn’t have to mean only fast food. Your traveling companions can also dictate the types of foods you eat. Let’s just say that my boyfriend could care less about eating in fancy restaurants because of their reputation or their ambiance. Going on trips with my girlfriends looks different than when I travel with him. My girlies and I do brunch! Or we go to a restaurant that has 3 or more stars, my boyfriend’s mantra is I eat to live, I don’t live to eat. Travel tip: know your audience.
Having these amazing experiences and eating new foods also has reinforced my beliefs that feelings about my body are temporary and making the choice to have a good time on vacation without the joy sucking fear that I can’t eat what I want while I’m away from home and exploring a new part of the country is extremely freeing. There is absolutely nothing wrong with staying true to yourself so that you can completely enjoy your vacation. Doing a little research is always helpful prior to a trip. I found a few restaurants, grocery stores, and farmers markets in the three places we were going to and I knew that I didn’t have to go one day without a Honeycrisp Apple whoo hoo!!
You can find both of these awesome donut shops on Instagram