Common Health Related Travel Mistakes and What the Experts Do Instead

Common Health Related Travel Mistakes and What the Experts Do Instead

We all know it.

Finding balance with health while traveling is hard. How can you enjoy it all and feel your best? There are so many new foods to try, sleep can be elusive, stress is present, drinks are flowing, and we just want to relax our efforts for a bit. But if we totally give in we can end up having low energy, less focus, digestive issues, and/or grumpiness, all things we don’t want while exploring a new place.

We want to be feeling our best. Full of a calm, effortless vibrancy.

So what do we do? How do we find this balance?

Let’s see what the experts in adventure, travel, health, and fitness have to say, shall we?

Rory Bosio: Ultra Trail Runner and Nurse

Rory Bosio is breaking the limits of female athleticism (read the Outside article: The Longer the Race the Stronger We Get in the latest women’s issue) as she won the Mont-Blanc Ultra two times while shattering the previous female record and becoming the first woman to be in the top 10 (she was 7th!). Rory is also on Esquire’s adventure show: Boundless. And she is a nurse. Wow. Photographer: Tim Kemple.                     Instagram:@rorybosio 

“Sometimes when people go on vacation they take a vacation from their healthy habits such as eating enough fruits & veggies & exercising. Big mistake!

To avoid being forced to eat whatever junky food is offered at airports, I always travel with nutritious snacks, such as carrots, nuts, LaraBars, apples, etc. Also, when I’m traveling  I make a point to start my day with activity, whether its going for a run around a new city or doing yoga in a park. That way the remainder of the day is free for other activities. I always pack running shoes for this reason.  I love to explore new cities via running. I also take advantage of layovers in airports to get in some push ups, stretching, & other calisthenics such as squats & lunges. Makes me feel much better than just sitting on my butt, which is what I’ll be doing in the plane anyway! I could care less if other people think it looks weird to be exercising in the airport. Makes me feel so much better!”

World Wanderers: Podcasters and Digital Nomads

Ryan and Amanda are the World Wanderers. As digital nomads, Ryan and Amanda are learning the ins and outs of travel. They share their experiences and interviews with fellow travelers on the World Wanderers Podcast. Amanda and Ryan have great insight, a gentle banter, and interesting thoughts on travel. Check them out!  Facebook:@theworldwandererspodcast Instagram:@theworldwandererspodcast Podcast: The World Wanderers

“When it comes to making healthy choices while traveling, the biggest mistake that many people make (and that we’ve made!) is thinking that you have to make healthy choices 100% of the time.

Food is a huge part of enjoying culture, and sometimes that means saying “yes” to the matcha soft serve ice cream or indulging in a German pretzel. And you should say “yes” sometimes!

We follow the 80/20 rule, where we make the commitment to eating healthy 80% of the time, while allowing ourselves to indulge the other 20% of the time. This allows us to feel good without feeling like we missed out on anything.”

Breakfast Criminals: Breakfast and Health Expert

KSENIA AVDULOVA is the original breakfast criminal. She started her online breakfast culture of treating yourself with love every morning, starting with breakfast. Amazing acai bowls are common on her site as are tasty smoothies. This is your go-to for starting your day right! Breakfast Criminals has been seen in Vogue, Mind Body Green, and Free People. As Ksenia says, “breakfast symbolizes home, nourishment and a new beginning, every day.”                         Facebook:@breakfastcriminals Instagram:@breakfastcriminals

“The most common mistakes are not eating your breakfast the day of travel and not preparing snacks.

When you eat a nourishing, nutritious breakfast in the morning, you reduce your chances of overeating and craving “bad” food later in the day. So make sure you take the time to eat a proper meal to start the day right. Try a green smoothie or a blueberry ginger oatmeal.

Also make sure you take your vitamins a few days before and on the day of the trip, as your body needs support while changing time zones. My go-tos are Life Equals multi, omega-3, a probiotic, and Vitamin C. I also noticed that Wellness Formula really gives my immune system a boost, especially if I feel like I’m about to catch a cold (it’s great to have handy while traveling!)”

Travis Ganong: Professional Downhill Ski Racer

Travis Ganong has been a world cup downhill skier since 2010 taking home two 1st place finishes. He competed in the 2014 Sochi Olympics with a top finish of 5th in the Downhill. As a competitive skier, travel throughout Europe and North America is a major part of competing, therefore Travis being mindful and taking care of himself while on-the-road is key.  Instagram:@travisganong

“It is tempting to watch a bunch of movies and eat and drink your way across continents.

I have really long flights overseas to compete in The World Cup and have be on top form soon after landing. If you want to feel better and be able to enjoy your trip once you land, have a healthy meal before you board the plane and drink a lot of water. Once I take my seat I take a melatonin, which is a natural sleep aid and I’ll watch half a movie, then put in my ear plugs and eye mask and sleep as much as possible. It is like time travel when you do it correctly and it’s so nice to wake up hours later fresh and ready to go!

The first thing when I get to my destination is to go on a hike or walk to get my heart rate up and get my bearings.”

Anne Lowrey- Freelance Travel Writer

Anne Lowrey started her blog: The Part-Time Traveler, when she realized most travel sites are written by full time travelers. She looks to inspire people to find any space in his/her life for travel.  She manages to live and work in San Francisco while visiting 10+ places a year. She is all about finding that balance between home-life and being on the road.   Facebook:@parttimetraveler    Instagram:@Anne_Elizabeth   Twitter:@Anne_Elizabeth      LinkedIn:Anne Lowrey

“I think the biggest thing for me when I think about traveling and health is considering what healthy habits from home I can bring with me on my trip.

I make an effort to find yoga classes or markets with fresh produce wherever I am in the world, just as I do at home. Though it’s not always possible for every destination, the more consistency I can find around my health, activity level, and nutrition, the better I feel. I also often pick up healthier habits while traveling, like walking everywhere, that I then try to implement back at home. It’s a challenge to stay healthy whether you’re on the road or not, but one worth thinking about!”

Megan Michelson: Freelance Adventure Writer

Megan Michelson is freelance writer who writes a weekly travel story for Outside Magazine Online. She is also a regular contributor to Powder, ESPN, Outside, and Mens Journal. On top of that she owns an operates the coworking space: The Tahoe Mill.                                               Instagram:@meganmichelson     

“For me, the biggest thing I tend to ignore while traveling is high quality sleep. It’s also the thing we all need perhaps the most to feel our best wherever in the world we may be. From pre-dawn airline flights to beds that aren’t our own to staying up late to enjoy a new place, it can be tough to get the quality and quantity of sleep we need. (And if you’re traveling with your kids, which I’m doing now, sleep is even harder.)

What works for me is bringing a few items from home that’ll ensure a good night of sleep — an eye mask in case the room’s too bright, a sound machine app on your phone in case your neighbors are partying late, your favorite bedtime tea to help you decompress before sleep, whatever make you comfortable in a foreign place. And you’re on vacation so don’t be afraid to take a cat nap in the middle of the day if you can!”

Jay Wild: Professional Paddle Athlete

Jay-wild-healthy travel tips-1
Jay is a professional paddle athlete competing in outrigger canoes, paddle boards and prone paddling. To keep in top racing form Jay paddles year round in the frigid waters of Lake Tahoe and Donner Lake. Along with his wife, Anik, he runs Waterman’s Landing, a cafe and paddle-shop. Here Jay and Anik run community paddle workouts and kids summer camps.  Instagram:@jaywild_tahoe

“Common health related mistakes people make while traveling that hinders them from feeling their best and getting the most out of their trip: #1 Pre-trip: Expectations/Anxiety/Stress

#2 During trip: Drinking/Eating poorly and the ‘oh I’m on vacation so I deserve this’ (whatever it may be) and then that creates guilt/ stress/ anxiety.

#3 Laziness: they feel like they need to do absolutely nothing when they actually could be doing fun stuff and seeing cool things and getting out of their comfort zone.

#4 Not being prepared or open minded enough to deal with the unknown obstacles of travel and then getting super stressed which leads to self medicating by drinking more alcohol or binge eating.

#5 Not drinking enough water causing dehydration.”

Hilary Paris: Yoga Teacher and Strength Instructor

Hilary Paris has been helping people move for over 9 years. She started with yoga, then added strength training. She is a MovNat certified trainer, encouraging people to move through being playful and having fun. She also leads wellness retreats for women. Find her next at Wanderlust Whistler.  Facebook:@Hilaryparis  Instagram:@hilaryparis

“The most common thing I see people do is stay at hotels and eat out for every meal.

I would suggest staying at an Airbnb and cooking as many meals at home. This is also a great way to meet the locals. If you go to a local farmer’s market, you are supporting them directly, getting the freshest ingredients and saving yourself from more stomach aches.”

Jackie Nourse: Travel Blogger/Expert

Jackie is a self-described travel addict. In 2013 she quit her jobs and created The Budget Minded Traveler, a site full of tips for us money conscious travelers. She also has a personal travel blog: Traveling Jackie. And she leads trips through Patagonia.  Facebook:@budgetmindedtraveler         Instagram:@travelingjackie

“Have some go-to pills to pack for traveling.

I encourage people to take shelf-stable probiotics everyday and bring enzymes to help them digest foods that may be foreign to their systems.

Also Nutribiotic Defenseplus to prevent getting sick. Of all the things I’ve tried to stay healthy and avoid colds and flus on the road, nothing has worked like these tablets. As soon as I start to feel a tickle in my throat or think I may be getting sick, I start taking 1-2 of these per day, and I’d say 4 out of 5 times it will pass and I won’t get sick at all. For as hard as we push our bodies on the road, it doesn’t hurt to have a natural supplement to aid in immune support when we need it.

Plus melatonin for getting good sleep on long flights.

Ambrose WB: Fitness and Health Coach

Ambrose is a health and fitness coach. He works with men and women empowering them to take care of themselves through creating goals while teaching how to actually reach them. He offers his services through his business: MISPIBO Fitness.     Facebook:@ambrosewb
“People go to the extreme. When at home, preparing to travel, they are on one end of the spectrum. No “this” and no “that”. They work so hard and save up so much just to blow all of their ambitions when traveling. And I’m thinking about “vacations” more than traveling here.
But people do too much while traveling.
In particular, too much drinking is the biggest common health-related mistake I see. When you drink too much it wrecks all of the hard work you’ve done. Causes you to sleep in and miss out on what your trip has to offer. And when you’re hungover you want to eat and not work out.
Getting drunk, not necessarily having a few drinks at dinner or at the pool, brings a cascade of problems.”

Randi Dukoff: Wellness Travel Specialist and Corporate Wellness Coach

Randi Dukoff is CEO at the Corporate Wellness Consulting Group. She designs custom wellness programs for businesses. She also teaches health coaches how to have successful corporate wellness businesses.  Facebook:@randidukoff  Twitter:@randidukoff  LinkedIn:@raniddukoff

“One common mistake is associating traveling and vacations with a week of bad eating habits where you break all the rules.

Do the opposite and take advantage of the restaurants and chefs to try local foods, new foods that sound delicious and be adventurous. Foods can be delicious and healthy for you. Accept that you may eat an extra dessert or drink an extra cocktail. Have it with no guilt, the expectation that it’s part of the week (it falls into the 20%) and then move on.

What you eat will affect how you feel and experience each day. Take time to review menus and make reservations ahead of time. Make sure there are options for you at each meal or surrounding restaurants. 

Also plan to keep a consistent workout schedule but feel free to mix it up and try workouts that may be specialized to your location and hotel.”

Two Sundowners: Digital Nomads

Jamie and Lucas are a full-time European traveling duo. Starting in 2016 they started traveling in their car throughout Europe. Currently they are working their way through South America. These digital nomads run a thorough blog on all the places they visit.              Facebook:@twosundowners  Instagram:@twosundowners  Pinterest:Two Sundowners

“This goes for full-time travelers: Take time for yourself and breathe. Do not travel too fast. It might not seem like it in the beginning but changing locations quickly and packing your days full of adventures needs to come with some form of balance. No one has unlimited energy.

Our advice for this is to pick your destinations carefully and stick to them for a while. This way you have a more authentic experience and have the option to allow your body to relax for a day without missing out. We try to stay in one place for a month at a time. On the weekends we do the exploring and the adventures. During the week we work or relax.”

Mike and Suzie: Personal Trainers and Health Advocates

Mike and Suzie are a traveling duo of health. They support people in finding balance with their health without dieting. They integrate personal development and mindset training with mindfulness, nutrition, empowerment, and physical activity. They also have expanded their ventures with and But definitely go to the Mike and Suzie page for healthy tips and free workouts!  Facebook:@mikeandsuzie  Instagram:@mikeandsuzie

“The biggest mistake we see people making is treating “travel” as an extended vacation. It’s easy to get to a new place and want to eat EVERYTHING new and exciting, but this will usually leave you feeling sluggish, bloated, and weighed down — which isn’t exactly fun when there are so many other things to experience about a culture besides their food.

We instill simple trade-offs when we’re dining in new places. We only eat the ‘treats’ that are really appealing to us, and if there’s something we know we want to try that isn’t exactly nutritions, we make sure that the other meals of the day are extra nutritions. We also try to find accommodations with kitchens so we can cook some of our own meals. Finding local markets is always a great way to get fresh veggies and delicious authentic dishes.”


Travis Sherry, The Extra Pack of Peanuts: Travel Hacker

Travis is the creator of Extra Pack Of Peanuts, a blog on traveling the world for less. His site has all sorts of ways to save money while traveling. He knows how to get cheap flights, hardly pay for hotel rooms, and get deals on rental cars. He and his wife, Heather have been traveling the world on little money for years!  Facebook:@extrapackofpeanuts  Instagram:packofpeanuts  Twitter:@packofpeanuts

“The biggest mistake people, including myself make, is thinking they have to either stick completely to their regimented diet that they have back home OR that they should completely ignore it and do what they want.

Basically, they see eating well when traveling as black and white – either they don’t enjoy the place and their food and cuisine because they feel they can’t “cheat” or they indulge too much, every meal, all the time, and feel gross (trust me, I’m speaking from experience).

Instead, I recommend people adhere to a super simple rule: Never eat two bad meals in a row. If you pig out at an awesome breakfast buffet, fine. But then get something sensible and healthy for lunch or dinner.
Do this, and you’ll at least keep some semblance of balance.

Oh, and always take the stairs instead of an escalator or elevator. It’s a little thing, but it’ll keep you feeling a little bit better!”

Ryan Lambert: Boat Captain

Ryan has been a full time boat captain for 3 years now sailing his 50ft boat: Soul Rebel throughout French Polynesia. He offers charters and crewing opportunities. Ryan’s boat journey started with buying his beautiful boat in Florida and sailing it through the Panama Canal over to Polynesia. When not showing clients all of his favorite snorkeling, swimming, beaches, and fishing spots he spends his days surfing, kiteboarding, paddleboarding, and of course sailing.   Facebook:@ryanlambert

“The most common by far health related mistake is constipation, I would say that 60-70 percent of people that come onto the boat suffer from this. So plan ahead by hydrating and find a natural remedy that they are familiar with like senna or something.

Also, I find the people that come to a place like this to decompress really need it more than they ever knew. It is common for people to be exhausted and they can’t figure out why. It can be a source of frustration of them not fulfilling their idea of what the first few days should be like. So I guess people need to prepare themselves for time for their body to recover from the stress and the load of a busy Babylonian life and just chill, recover, rest, and be stoked that they have this opportunity.”





Yoga Nomads: Traveling Yoga Business Coaches

Anne and Brandon are the yoga nomads, the couple who combines a yoga lifestyle with travel. They empower yoga teachers around the world to create sustainable business and they do this while traveling the world. Pretty cool stuff!   Facebook:@theyoganomads   Instagram:@theyoganomads 

“Staying healthy while traveling is a top priority to us, given that we lead a very nomadic lifestyle.

One tip we always recommend to other travelers is to drink enough water! It can seem to obvious (or not) and simple, but increasing your water intake can make a big difference in your overall well-being while traveling. Just think – our bodies are made up of nearly 75% water. That alone is reason to drink up! Drinking water also helps flush toxins through your system, allowing you to look and feel your best. But! Ensure it’s safe to drink. We usually bring charcoal sticks and/or Grapefruit Seed Extract to clean and detoxify water to make it safe for drinking.”





What-the-experts-do-imageNow that you have an idea of what these experts do to stay feeling their best while traveling, it’s your turn. Pick one area to focus on for your next trip: sleep, eating, movement, or staying hydrated. Or pick one little thing you can do for each.

Just make sure you come up with a plan that will support you in realizing your goal and then implement it! No need to try to be ‘perfect’ right away. Start small for your next trip whether its camping with the family or adventuring in Greenland.

Now go and have the best trip possible, through feeling your best!


Please share below in the comments section: Which tip inspired you the most? Which one will you implement on your next trip???


More healthy travel tips for you…



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