I’ve taken a few road trips this summer, and eating in the car can be a slippery slope. Sitting for long periods of time, especially if driving alone, makes me want to snack to keep busy. The key for me to staying on target is to busy my mind to avoid the temptation to graze. I get bored listening to music for hours; during my last trip, I listened to a book and practiced Spanish with drive-time lessons on disc. This really helped curb my desire to snack! As far as food is concerned, I plan ahead and try to stop somewhere pleasant to enjoy my lunch, which also limits snacking in the car.
I always pack a cooler with snackable veggies, fruit, and healthful meals – sandwiches are easy, and I almost always travel with bananas and pears to layer with peanut butter. Likewise, nuts in the shell are a good option since they are nutritious and keep my hands busy (not while driving, of course!). The hardest part for me is the insidious gas station fare: There is rarely anything healthful to eat at convenience stores. I limit my choices to low calorie beverages, nuts, and any fruit available, but allow myself one treat per day, e.g. chips or candy. Even better than this, stopping at roadside farm stands in the summer months is my favorite treat on trips! For your next long drive, why not take the time to stop and enjoy the lunch you prepared, and pack fresh fruit and veggies to fill you up between meals?