Traveling with Meal Prep: Checklist, Meal Planning, TSA, Hotels and Tips for Success

Summer is almost here and chances are you have upcoming travel planned. You are in a good routine while you are at home, sticking to your nutrition plan by meal planning and prepping (meal prep Sunday!!). You want to stay on track while you are traveling, but aren't sure what healthy meal options will be available, or you simply aren't willing to leave your nutrition to chance. Traveling with meal prep seems overwhelming and you need someone to break it down for you and show you the ropes. 

My name is Kristen Reddin and I am the founder of My Fat Loss Boss where I specialize in fat loss consulting; helping successful and busy people reach their fat loss goals. I help my clients achieve success in this area, which is typically the only area in their life where they have not yet been successful. I do this by customizing individual plans for optimal fat loss in the areas of nutrition, fitness and motivation, both when clients are at home and when they are traveling. What sets me apart is my experience as a corporate traveler successfully losing forty pounds of fat in six months, and going from thirty three percent body fat to fifteen percent.  

Asa corporate traveler I was traveling more than one hundred nights per year. I was eating most meals out, not prioritizing exercise or nutrition, and was super stressed. I felt defeated, not confident in myself and unclear as to why I was not successful in this area of my life. My wake up call came after I had spent three months living mostly away on a work project. I got home and realized that I had hit my highest weight. I drew a line in the sand for myself and decided to change. I hired a coach to guide me with a fat loss plan covering the areas of fitness, nutrition and mindset. The key for me was to master how to be successful with it all while traveling. Once I did, I was able to lose forty pounds of fat in six months, during which I was on the road ten nights per month. I felt happier, more confident and ready to take on the world!

I discovered that I am extremely passionate about about inspiring and helping others to create lasting change in their lives. So much so that I quit my corporate job to use my experience to help others achieve their fat loss goals and make the kind of lasting lifestyle changes that they are seeking. 

Thanks so much for reading and when you follow this guide you will be on the road to successful travel with meal prep! Let's get started!

Checklist (the things you need):

  • Cooler: either a soft sided basic model or one made specifically for meal prep (includes containers and is more expensive).
  • Containers: plastic ones with tight fitting lids are best for travel; select a size that fits well when stacked inside your cooler.
  • Ziplock Bags: various sizes from snack to gallon.
  • Ice packs (gel) or gallon size Ziplocks to fill with ice.
  • Pro Tip: bring an empty re-usable water bottle to fill up and stay hydrated during your travels (and cut down the cost of water in the airport/hotels).
  • Pro Tip: bring a shaker bottle with pre-portioned individual scoops of protein powder in snack size Ziplocks stuffed inside to make sure you get enough protein.
  • Pro Tip: use the same sized plastic containers so you can stack them inside each other when done eating to reduce space (also use Ziplocks when possible to reduce space).

Meal Planning: 

  • Prep, weigh, cook and portion everything at home into individual servings.
  • The smaller and more compact the containers (or Ziplocks) the better.
  • The less ingredients and more simple your meal plan, the better.
  • Proteins: grilled chicken, hard boiled eggs, tuna pouches, roasted sliced turkey.
  • Starchy Carbs: brown rice, quinoa, rice cakes, oatmeal.
  • Fibrous Carbs: spinach, asparagus, broccoli, cut up raw veggies.
  • Fats: nut butters and whole nuts (almonds, cashews, peanuts).
  • Pro Tip: plan out your meals and portions ahead to ensure you are meeting your calories/macros for the day.
  • Pro Tip: bring (store bought or homemade) protein bars to have for snacks.

TSA/Airport:

  • Liquids are limited by TSA to 3.4 ounces or less per container, and you are allowed a maximum of one quart sized bag of them. This includes anything with a gel like or soft consistency (peanut butter, hummus, etc). Larger containers will be discarded by TSA. 
  • Melted gel ice packs will not be allowed through TSA so either pack them into your checked luggage or leave behind at home.
  • Pro Tip: your cooler counts as a carry on so bring a bigger canvas bag to put it in with your other plane essentials before you board or you will have to check your rolling bag. 
  • Pro Tip: buy empty travel shampoo bottles at the drugstore and fill with any liquids you want to bring with you, like almond milk (and keep them in a quart sized ziplock bag).
  • Pro Tip: bring single serve (or pre portioned to 3.4 ounces or less) containers of peanut butter and hummus for easy snacking (and keep them in your quart sized ziplock bag).

Hotel:

  • Call ahead to arrange a fridge in your room (usually $25 or less). Call as soon as you book as most hotels do not have many.
  • Call ahead and request that the mini bar/all snacks be removed from your room ahead of time for more fridge space and less temptation.
  • Unpack your cooler into the fridge as soon as you arrive to ensure everything stays cold.
  • Pro Tip: if you have access to the executive lounge they will have free bottled water, fruit and tea.
  • Pro Tip: the gym almost always has a filtered water dispenser, so fill up the bottle you brought there. 

Follow this guide and these tips and you will be on the road to traveling with meal prep like a pro in no time. Thank you for reading! Follow My Fat Loss Boss on Facebook and Instagram for inspiration, tips, and meal prep ideas. For inquiries on fat loss consulting email: Kristen@MyFatLossBoss.com