29 Jan 15 – Clean eating on the road

To all of those loyal, devoted, avid readers of this blog (*coff*), I apologise for the tardiness in my writing of late. Please don’t think that I’ve been wasting away and not doing any CrossFit, far from it, I have simply been exceptionally busy on the road and in my daily job.
Having said that, due to being on the road a lot, I got in to the box on Monday morning but have since not managed to do any training other than 2 short runs; I will be back in the box tomorrow morning though, business as usual.
So, if I’ve not worked out and don’t have an immediate sitrep on my WOD, what am I going to write about?

Well, having been away a lot (and being in the USA next week), it is proving very difficult to maintain some kind of clean eating regime. The temptation to snack from the driver’s seat on a long journey is exceptionally great and almost too tough to overcome. Sugar cravings set in and it becomes too easy to stop and fill up the car, snaffling a bounty bar or something in the process.

But it’s not impossible.

While I try to prepare my normal daily meals the night before and can therefore remain in control, there is nothing to stop you preparing for your long journey in advance in the same manner.

What are you looking for in ‘car journey’ food? As a driver, you need something simple, handy and not-messy. This is why the service stations are filled with pasties and sandwiches, of course. The option of the daily salad gets that little bit harder, or so I initially thought. However, it actually makes things easier when you think about; in fact, eating from a car can have its benefits.

One of the reasons we tend to snack between meals is because we have eaten our meal at speed. It is a common problem in the working environment where you eat at your desk, don’t pay attention, eat soft food that is easily swallowed and before you know it you are looking for something else to stuff in your mouth. Well, long journeys actually enable you to overcome that. The requirement for simple, non-messy food means that you need to be able to eat with your hands and not have whatever it is break open and spill over you; chopped up salads, sauces, cutlery-food is out and unchopped, whole, natural things are in. By remaining in their ‘unchopped’ / unprocessed state, there is a requirement to actually chew the food first, slowing the whole eating process right down.

Sliced meats, hard boiled eggs, whole vegetables, whole nuts, jerky / biltong (natural), sausages (cooked and with over 90% actual meat) are all in. There are other examples, of course, but this is a good starter for 10. Certainly, these are the foods I enjoy.
Having a small(ish) lunch box with a whole carrot, whole celery stick, 100g sliced roast beef and a hard boiled egg will last me a long time and means that I can actually snack on it instead of having to eat it all at once, should I wish to. Keeping a bag of natural biltong and some shelled nuts (because using a nutcracker while at the wheel is probably illegal, I suspect!) gives you an added boost and will stop you intentionally pulling over for nutty / sweets.
By arranging this first in a lunch box, you are setting a defined limit and you can control how much you are eating. Certainly, the distraction of driving means that it is all too easy to ‘forget’ how much you have eaten but by sticking to the same lunch box that you use every day anyway means that you can reassure yourself that you have eaten the same as normal and keep a focused mind on the quantities.

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