by Jane, Boston, MA
If there’s one thing I do, it’s travel. A lot. I mean a LOT. I spend over five months a year away from my house. Five months! I arrange student travel for a living, plus I travel to teach. So when I tell you that something works for traveling, I’m serious about it. And one of my absolute favorite things about Nutrisystem was that it worked just as well, if not better, while I was traveling.
Yes. Because the food is shelf-stable, you can throw it right in your suitcase. You can’t bring any of the pre-prepared meals in your carry-on bag on the plane, but you can bring the powdered ones. And yes, I’ve made Nutrisystem macaroni and cheese on an airplane.
The meals do not take up a lot of space. The protein shakes take up even less. So you can easily put a day’s worth or a week’s worth of meals in your suitcase and be set for the time you’re gone. Pick up a bag of apples and a bottle of milk at the grocery once you arrive, and you’re set.
I’ve taken Nutrisystem meals through customs in 4 countries and never had so much as a question. Since the food is packaged and processed, it’s my understanding that it isn’t subject to any customs problems—at least not anywhere I’ve ever been.
I’m really good at managing a grocery budget when I’m home. I clip coupons, I shop sales, and I keep our grocery budget way down. But when I’m on the road, it’s almost impossible. Sometimes I have no kitchen. Sometimes I have no grocery store option. Sometimes I’m exhausted. Sometimes I’m sitting on a plane and in airports for 50 or 60 hours in a row, so it’s either airplane food or bar food or a candy bar. All bad options as far as nutrition goes. And all expensive!
Nutrisystem costs about $9/day. Can you imagine buying breakfast, lunch, dinner, and a snack while you’re out on the road for a total of $9? And can you imagine doing that and having the meals be healthy, full of balanced nutrition, low calorie, and ready to eat the second you’re hungry without you leaving your hotel room? Right. It’s a no-brainer.
Going out to restaurants is fun when that’s what you want to do, but when you’re just trying to get yourself fed, it can be a huge pain. You have to find a place, hope it’s okay, spend probably an hour by the time all is said and done, plus pay for the meal and tip.
Cooking while you’re traveling is even worse. You don’t have any ingredients in stock, so you have to buy everything you want to use. You end up buying prepared food at the grocery store, or eating the same thing for every meal, or buying 25 things that get left behind in the hotel room kitchen. It works, and I’ve done it. But it’s definitely not as easy as grabbing dinner from your suitcase, heating it up, and saving your per diem for a new pair of shoes. Not that I would ever do that.
Maybe you have a great restaurant in mind while you’re traveling. Great! But you can still throw some protein shakes and breakfasts in your bag, and a back-up dinner in case you have a night with no plan, and then stay pretty much on track while you’re away without giving up the chance to eat out. Remember, it’s never all or nothing! Every good decision counts!
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