To Travel Is To Live

By: Janine Serio

While I have ALWAYS enjoyed traveling, it hasn’t been until recently that I have really grown to love it! Not only is it a way to see the world – although my worldliness has only taken me so far – BUT, it has become a practice with my lifestyle and getting me OUT of my comfort zone. 

Today’s post is, actually, spurred by a recent – and very last minute – (quick) trip to SoCal with my Mom. Sure, we were there for a little business BUT, let’s be honest, there was a LOT of pleasure in the mix too. I mean, come on, it is California after all!

Back in the day, I would view travel as a “Holiday” sort to speak. What do I mean? Well, kind of a free for all when it came to eating whatever I wanted, drinking whatever I wanted, and no concern for working out or staying active.

For however long I was away, my lifestyle back home was put on a MAJOR HOLD!!

I never knew WHEN I would get to “come back,” or travel for that matter, so the mentality of “might as well do it all NOW,” seemed to be the vicious mantra that would always put me back to THIS state when I got home –> feeling miserable, guilty, and now needing to be on a PLAN.

I can remember one time traveling home from a family vacation to the islands, and going through the various fitness magazines I brought with me, desperately trying to find the PERFECT plan to get me “back on track.” I would write out my fitness schedule and meals for when I got home, and SWORE to myself that I would stick with it!

Was I motivated to start something new? Absolutely!

Was I dreading what I had in store for myself? I am sure!

Was I learning anything about myself and my process? Hell no!

And THIS, right here, has been the mental shift and game changer for me over the last 3 years. 

I am sure you can write the ending to my “needing to get right back on a plan” story. I came home, was able to white-knuckle my way for the 1st few days and, then, it would seem to go downhill from there. If I missed a workout, or did not eat EXACTLY what was on my so called “plan,” then forget it.

Here is the crazy part –> I would get down on myself if I I went for a 2nd helping of rice, or chose to eat the whole potato instead of half, or maybe added SOMETHING ELSE to my bland chicken and broccoli because it was just not satisfying.

Crazy, right?

Over the last 3 years, I have been working towards figuring out what works for ME and how to, FINALLY, drop this “all or nothing” mindset. This is hard, I mean, really hard at times. I still struggle with fighting this mindset. Regardless of whether or not I am home, traveling, at a conference, in a meeting, on vacation, etc., I am striving to get to a place of BEING THE SAME PERSON, EATING THE SAME WAY, MOVING ACCORDING TO HOW I FEEL, and, most importantly, PRACTICING AND ENJOYING MY PROCESS every step of the way.

And the BIGGEST shift – NOT STRESSING MYSELF OUT ABOUT ALL OF THIS TOO! Life is stressful enough, right?

It’s about getting to a place of not being so RIGID and METHODICAL, yet not saying “FUCK IT,” I will worry about it tomorrow, or the next day, or even next week. It’s about being present in the moment, letting go of this idea that if it’s not PERFECT then you are weak, and just TRUSTING YOURSELF.

As part of my process, I have devised 5 EASY and EFFORTLESS “non-negotiable’s” that YOU can implement when you are away from your “comfort zone” to help you stay in your power, not feel like you are having to “start all over,” and, most importantly, live in the moment!

*Remember, this is not a “one-size-fits-all” guideline. You will still need to investigate, and customize, so that these work for YOU and FIT your lifestyle! 🙂 

  1. Prioritize Sleep: We all know what happens when we don’t get enough sleep…:/ This is, especially, key when faced with a time change. Let’s face it, so many of us are walking around sleep deprived on a day to day basis. When traveling, I take this time to TRY and get the sleep that my body so desperately needs. While I know there is nothing better than your own bed, it can also be a place that you are thinking about the million things that still need to get done. Maybe this is just me – ha! – but, when I travel, I tend to not have as much of the “noise” swirling around as usual. 
  2. Water Consumption: Not only is this a “non-negotiable” when I am home, but I always make sure that I stay on top of thirst and hydration WHEREVER I go. Beyond it’s benefits, it keeps my eating “in-check,” provides a great buffer between cocktails (hint, hint, wink, wink), and provides a sense of comfort and familiarity. 
  3. Be Active: And this does not necessarily mean you have to be in the gym! For some people, vacation is a chance to get in some GOOD QUALITY sweat sessions if their usual schedule does not allow them to get to the gym as often as they would like. For others, like myself, vacations (or travel, in general) find me liking the break from the usual gym grind. Instead, I choose to sight-see, walk A LOT (hello close to 20,000 steps for 2 days in a row), and just give my body a breather. Sure, there are times when I do yearn for a good 20-30 minute workout but I try to not stress myself out about getting into the gym if I am not feeling it. Be active because it makes you FEEL good, not because it feels like a chore. 
  4. Sample Local Fare: This is one of my favorite parts of traveling – THE FOOD! I love experiencing the culinary creations in all my travels. While I continue to emphasize lean proteins, healthy fats, and lots of vegetables at every meal, I absolutely give myself FULL PERMISSION to taste, sample, and try anything I want! Remember, it is all about moderation…and, before you know it, you will be back to eating your staples at home! Boo! 
  5. Be a Kid Again: I love this one because I don’t think us “adults” do enough of it. Getting out of our comfort zone should also mean getting out of our stress zones too. I know this can be easier said than done BUT this is where embracing where you are in the moment really comes into play. There are no responsibilities, chores, schedules, etc. (okay, if you are traveling for business or another commitment it may feel a little different) – it’s time to stop, take a deep breath, and, even for a brief period of time, be a little carefree.


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