Monday, December 26, 2011

Cooler, Scale, Magnifying Mirror- Let's Go.

Insert roof rack for more accurate image

I’m sure a good number of you are away as you read this. If you’re not, take comfort in the fact that you have access to your kitchen, your usual workouts, and your routine. Yes, sure I know some of the “fun” of being away is getting away from all of that but there is a downside. We spend a lot of time in Vermont (where I am right now). Last week, our good friends spent the week before Christmas up here. I received the following text from my friend:
I’m in full on VT mode: fat, hirsute and very bad hair. I have no idea what’s going on in the world and have adjusted to shopping at a 7 eleven. We’ll be up here for New Years; I can’t go out at home given my current state.
My friend was kidding, sort of kidding. The difference from prior years where we all commiserated about the color the well water turns our hair, how forgiving leggings and a giant sweater seem to be and the fact that skiing, when you do it all the time, isn’t really that good of a workout was that I was still in NYC. I had the opportunity to take charge and prevent “VT mode.”

Cooler and then some- I pack a mean cooler for any road trip but for a week in Vermont it was filled to the rim. Sadly, my new pretty stainless steel cooler has no wheels, so my husband had to hoist it from apartment to car and car to house. Ski eating is protein heavy so I packed an array of greens, cauliflower, broccoli, multiple avocados, probiotics and also omega 3 eggs, grass-fed meat and Siggis plain yogurt. Instead of bringing booze and ingredients for festive drinks for our “guests” I kept things to organic red and white wine. As I made balsamic roasted cauliflower and a huge salad last night, I felt as though I was winning the healthy versus heavy battle- round one to Lauren.

Scale- I have never travelled with a scale and sometimes curse hotels when they include them in the bathrooms. The thing is, despite exercise and eating well somehow something happens in this state and I come back feeling resolution-worthy. And lest you think it’s a female or spoiled thing my husband, knowing the “Vermont effect”, supported the precautionary measures. So the scale came in the car and I will get on it daily. I mentioned this on Twitter and received this reply
@Foodtrainers nuts to travel with a scale when you exercise and know what to eat. Slippery slope to a disorder IMO.
IMO (In my opinion) not having the scale is a “slippery slope” to gaining a couple of pounds after a week on the slippery slopes of Vermont despite exercise and eating well. I appreciated this tweeps concern.

Magnifying Mirror- it’s so easy to forego make-up, throw on a hat and go about your day here. You can’t see errant eyebrow hair behind ski goggles but eventually the goggles come off. So, after the hirsute admission from my friend, in the suitcase (only an LL Bean tote, not so big) went the magnifying mirror.

If this sounds extreme, not to worry there will be wine and cheese and I get the “when in Rome” mentality; however, we’re not in Rome. I can have any of these foods any weekend and, for me, getting home feeling good is a “treat”.  I would rather curb the enthusiasm by watching and tweezing that to adopt the ignorance is bliss mentality. I’m all for bringing any part of your routine with you if it makes you feel good.
Have you traveled with any of the items mentioned above? What food or items do you tote to temper the treats? Do you think I’m cautious or crazy? 


  1. Some people might think you're crazy but I think bringing your own food is the only way to go... you just never know what's going to be available to eat during your travels. And 7-11 wouldn't work for me.
    On bringing a scale with you... it really depends what kind of person you are. I don't weight myself at all because for me it results in obsessive thoughts about weight. I find I am much more comfortable with myself w/o watching my weight in numbers. I rely on other tools to keep my weight in check. If my jeans get tight then I know it's time to re-evaluate what I'm eating.

    But if monitoring your weight with a scale is for informational purposes and doesn't result in obsessive thoughts say you discover you've gained a pound then I don't see any problems with it.
    Everyone has different tools and tricks that work for them!!
    That was nice of your hubby to carry the cooler for you =) If he's anything like my husband he probably said "back massage" right when you entered the house.

  2. I'm a big fan of packing lots of food—you save money and spare yourself the stress of choosing between less-than-stellar options.

  3. I don't think your crazy :)

    Planning ahead is key to continuing success. I pretty much planned out the 4 days up to and including Christmas. I knew what I was eating, when, if it was going to be outside of my diet, how to handle it and when I would exercise.

    The first weekend I was away in a hotel when I started my journey, I planned every meal. I took salad, dressing and milk (with my cereal) in a cooler, found a subway, researched the menu and had already picked out what I would order. I collected fruit from the hotel breakfast.

    People generally do not always make the best decisions when they are out and about, hungry and have no plan.

    Hope you're having a great week!

  4. Byzbee- with you on the planning and for my clients it's a key to their success. I think people think vacation should be more loosey goosey but I think you can have fun and still plan and still relax in other ways. You seem to have structure mastered. Jess, everyone including my boys is happy with the cooler ingredients. My kids often opt to come home after their lessons for lunch versus mountain food. And Lisa, yes the chivalry comes with its own price. How many times has he mentioned that the cooler has no wheels?

  5. As I board an 11 hour flight later today the last thing I have on my mind is lugging a scale along. Really, I don't even want to lug my kid along!

  6. Ameena, I never said kids were part of the Lauren vrs the mountain plan, tll Maya she doesn't make the weight limit. 11 hours, where are you headed? Thank you for reading about my anal packing list before you board.

  7. Traveling can really wreak havoc on the old routine, can't it? I try to come up with strategies in advance but regardless of what I eat or how much activity I get I usually come home feeling (for lack of a better word) irregular.

  8. If you've "lost" the battle of VT a couple of times previous and want to avoid it happening again this is the way to go. I also understand how it sounds super nutty. I say, do what you need to do! If you know what you are up against and you want to prevent feeling bad in a week from now, then by all means, pack a scale!

    I also think that you are an exception to the rule when it comes to healthy eating (as are most of us on your blog). We are super aware of what dangers lurk in excessive consumption of crap-food and we also know how bad it makes us feel physically. We feel it more than other people who don't eat clean on the daily because our idea of "good" eating is much different than other people's, Just like our version of "bad" is much different (ie, wine and cheese platter vs. cookies and booze).

    You are simply eliminating the frills! And indulging in the good stuff.

  9. Yes Cameo, years 2008-2011 were won by the mountain and I will not have it this year. It's nutty but I don't feel pressured or restricted or any of the things people say when they hear about sticking to a routine away. Pressure is feeling my ski pants tight. Yes, my "bad" is different and those who say just watch things may find that works but with this situation I'm treating it like a game. Better safe than chubby.

  10. Lauren, I admire your determination to eat healthy. I wish I had your drive. I smiled at the scale remark :) I hope you enjoy your time and have a wonderful holiday. Thank you for your kind words and wishes.

  11. Isn't Vermont one of the healthiest states?? I would think it would be the perfect place to really stay in shape and eat good, healthy food. Maybe I'm wrong?
    I don't think I would ever bring a scale with me on a vacation (no, actually, I know I wouldn't) but good for you for knowing that what YOU have to do to keep on track. And whoever tweeted that is crazy (about the ED). Bringing a scale on vacation may be slightly strange, but it will in no way cause an ED. That's ridiculous.
    I hope you enjoyed your Christmas :)

  12. I don't think there is anything wrong with bringing a scale with you..if you don't mind lugging it with you.
    I think it's important to still maintain healthy eating while out of town..which can be a difficult task at times.

  13. We just went on a food trip (9 hours) and I split all my snacks down the middle with my in-laws, who were caravanning with us. It was interesting to see/hear what they ate first (small bag potato chips and crackers were GONE) and at the end of the trip they gave back the hummus and lemon slices! ha

    Great reminders, keep the insights going for us!


  14. when you're trapped in a car/plane Lyndi even unhealthy eaters will change their ways. Kristen, it's totally a game let's see what components lead to what weight. If I really cared/obsessed not good.Gina, not first time I've been called strange, ha. I see it as a science experiment vrs anything deeper. How can I figure this ski eating out, let's see.

  15. Cooler packed with healthy food- absolutely! Scale-not for me, but if it works for you, I say go for it! Magnifying mirror-definitely not! I was just looking at pictures from our recent ski skiing hat/helmet hair and wind burned cheeks is not my best look, so would prefer not to magnify :-). Have fun!

  16. Have a great time! I'm glad you took the scale since it works for you. That's what is good - what works for each of us as long as it truly works. Good example for everyone, Lauren.

  17. Yes Caron, sometimes being silly works for me. I thought useful to share that sometimes you over prepare and that makes you sane. Sometimes you wing it. It's finding the system that fits the circumstance. Happy Holidays. Thanks for all your blog love.

  18. I think it pays off to be a little nutty. The more prepared (with exercise options,food etc.) the better we BOTH feel when we get home. Unnecessary indulging is a much more fleeting "satisfaction."

    I've never brought a scale, but if I had to guess I'd say the sheer fact that it's in your house (cabin? I picture a cabin here) will motivate/remind you to keep it sensible. Sort of a placebo effect...?

  19. "Better safe than chubby." I love this one! :)

    Yes to the cooler! That's the way I travel too.
    I don't need a scale or a magnifying mirror but everyone is different. Just bring along what you need to make you feel good today AND tomorrow.
    Enjoy your skiing trip. I am jealous.

  20. I am just so impressed that you bring along a cooler with you!

  21. I don't think you are crazy at all. We have a house at a lake a couple of hours south of the city and I always take a cooler - I always take my own food, despite my huband's protests that we can "just shop down there." No we can NOT. I haven't taken a scale but I am probably going to end up buying one for the house becuase it never fails - despite my cooler I always gain a few pounds so obviously more a drastic measure is needed. I'm with you when you say pressure is my pants feeling tighter! Not a good feeling!

  22. Oh Amber "just shop there" is like me telling my husband to "just play golf" in the back yard. And eating out of your routine can be tricky. I'm flat after 3 days in VT, so far so good.

  23. I tend to go with the flow when traveling but bring snacks and sustainance when needed or if out in the middle of nowhere. Usually we keep pretty active on trips, so I tend not to worry. The scale is not for me. I actually ended up losing weight on our honeymoon cruise. How the heck did that happen? Eating healthier just makes you feel so much better that's what I like especially on vacation. If I do have a splurge item, I listen to my tummy saying it's full and watch the portions. Have a great New Year!