How We Survived Whole30 In Planes, Airports, & Hotels (Without Being Miserable)

Staying on trend with the Whole30 deal, the only “sugar” allowed is in the form of kisses. So, when it comes to my feelings regarding airports and air travel, I won’t sugar coat that either.

I’m not a fan of flying.

There, I said it. You want me to PAY for a seat in an aluminum tube, more than 30,000 feet in the air, squished between 2 other humans while the person in front of me reclines in my lap, hold my urine until my bladder bursts to avoid whatever is lurking in that Matel sized “bathroom” meant for a barbie doll, all while my tushy goes numb from the “cushioned” seats.

No thanks.

Unfortunately, it’s a necessary evil that we’re doing on a semi-regular basis these days.

Normally, this gives Lance and myself a free ticket to drown our airport sorrows in comfort foods, which usually works pretty well. Think gummy bears, coke zero, cookies, Chic fil A fries,  M&M’s…the works. He gets so mad at me when he looks down to grab a sour patch kid (before the plane takes off) only to realize I’ve eaten all the candy…guilty!

(This is why, at the theater, Lance has to keep the candy from me until the 30 minutes of previews are over and the big show begins. 😁 Otherwise, I’d eat all the twizzlers before we get to our seats! Am I three or am I thirty? Sometimes I can’t tell. )

My sugar dragon is fierce, y’all.

Now, I’m not sure if this sugar-filled plan actually helps the airport sorrows or just spikes our blood sugar so high that it puts us in a mini coma and we forget what happened. Either way,  this particular travel day is a little lot different as it marks day 17 (Lance’s day 11) of my Whole30 and I’ll be darned if I let airport chaos deter my mission.

When a woman is on a mission, get out of her way. Can I get an amen?

So, can you guess the word that is going to be the key to my success??

I bet you can…

On the tip of your tongue…

Yes!

Preparation.

A couple of posts ago we talked about prepping for a weekend at the lake, being surrounded by temptations, and having conversations with chocolate…outloud. Not my proudest moment. With air travel and hotels, there’s more anticipation involved as you’re not as likely to  have as many resources at your final destination.

The Basics

In regards to prepping for the airports and plane rides themselves, I planned food that

a. wasn’t incredibly messy

b. wouldn’t make everyone hate me by having to smell it (I’m looking at you boiled eggs and tuna)

c. could be eaten cold or room temperature

d. didn’t need my hands to transport food to mouth…fork please! (airports seriously gross me out on an exceptionally high level, because people are gross and don’t wash their hands after using the restroom, sneezing into them, wiping (and picking) their nose, etc, and I DON’T WANT THEIR NASTINESS. Ugh.)

So, like the super cool kid that I am, I brought along my complimentary Nurse’s Appreciation Week cooler courtesy of the hospital and packed it quite full.

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Pre Trip Food Haul

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:

We had checked with the hotel prior to arrival to confirm they DID have a regrigerator. That is a Whole30 WIN! So, upon landing we searched for WholeFoods in our phones and 10 minutes later, there we were.

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Isn’t he the cutest ❤

A rotisserie chicken also ended up in our cart after the left photo was snapped.

Once at the hotel we realized we scored a double win because there was a microwave in the room as well! It’s the small things, right? 🙂 I was super excited not to be eating cold chicken and sausage for the next 4 days. Even if the microwave was made the same year I was born.  Minor details.

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We ate every.single.thing that was in this fridge! There was no food waste which makes my frugal heart very happy!

Dinner Night One In The Very Small Town

{We hit jackpot}

Off we went, on foot, straight to the Chipotle a few blocks away. This way Lance could get a quadruple order of chicken and steak and it’d be easy to be Whole30 compliant. Not only was yummy food awaiting us upon our arrival…so was a line of about 45 people!

Initially, we decided to wait it out. Compliant food without stress was worth the wait. However, it was not two minutes later that Lance had found another option that was across the street, and best of all, lineless

Onward to Quarks we went! It was delicious. If you’re ever in St. Cloud, MN, and need a quick, healthy option this is a GREAT place. The staff was super helpful and understanding of our Whole30 situation.

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You can’t see the steak that is hiding under all of the veggies in my bowl, but that’s only because I added every.single.vegetable on the menu, and that is no exaggeration.

If you are wondering about dressing, none of theirs were compliant. So, it’s a great thing this chic brought her own dressing from home…in a travel sized shampoo bottle 😂

Crazy or prepared?? The jury is still out!

P.S

Can we talk about how thankful we were for the 45 people in line that prompted us to choose a much less known dinner option?! Yes, lets.

We were settling in bed for the night with the local news on TV covering quite the unfortunate story: 17 Chipotles in MINNESOTA had confirmed LINKED cases of SALMONELLA!!! UUUGGHHHH!

That, my friends, is a parting gift that I would like to leave IN MINNESOTA!

Thank you, God, for sparing our GI systems!

And I really hope the 45 people who stuck out the line did not indeed come in contact with any salmonella 😁

Non-Glamorous Whole30 Meals

out of the mini fridge and constructed on the island dresser, hah!

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Basically, breakfast and lunch were from the mini fridge, lovingly nicknamed Midge, and were variations of above. For dinner, we let loose and dined out each evening.

There was a whole lot of saving containers, taping lids down to ensure a lack of leakage, washing dishes in the bathroom sink with hotel shampoo, drying them off with toilet paper, and using a pocket knife to cut meats and veggies.

Jealous? What can I say, we enjoy a 5 star way of life, and if it’s not fancy, it’s not for us 🙂

Nights 2&3 Out On The St. Cloud, MN Town

Nick’s was so good we doubled up and went back two nights in a row. Creatures of habit? Maybe, but we could also walk there and did I say it was sooooooo good!? Apparently their chef(s) gets the vegetables from their own garden and they serve meat that is both locally raised and grass fed.

Look at this medium rare loveliness

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Night 2 was a grass fed burger, topped with a fried egg, and served with sweet potato mash that was delicious!

“Brunch”

I giggled when we pulled up to this next one, but a special someone requested french toast, so where else do you go in a small town? Who serves “french toast all day long?”

None other than good ole'” Copper Tavern’s Family Food.”

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I ended up with some turkey, topped with tomato slices, 2 fried eggs, and served with a side of fresh cantaloupe. Let’s just say the cantaloupe was delicious and leave it at that 🙂

The Wrap Up

I am super glad I brought:

❤ almond butter, jarred and mini packs

❤ compliant dressing in a travel sized shampoo bottle

❤ plenty of plasticware and napkins

❤ food for the airplane rides

❤ jerky and bars for emergencies

❤ a good knife (but if you’re going for just a carry on, a plastic knife will do)

❤ a few plastic containers for transporting food.

❤ tape (not everyone will do this, but I really didn’t want my bags smelling like steak, dressing, chicken, etc)

I could have done without:

(You won’t be scrolling much for this list)

*Not pictured was a small cutting board. I never used it and it was still wrapped in the plastic grocery bag when I got home.

(This completes the portion of  “I could have done without,” Hah!)

Pro’s

Normally, we would have spent a lot of money purchasing extremely overpriced items in the airport.

 When your sugar dragon is awake and active, you’ll pay $10 for your fix. Am I right or am I right?

 It’s like paying movie theater prices without the entertainment. (But I guess people watching can be quite the entertainment!) And I can’t think of any purchases besides black coffee that were made! Score. On that note, since we made meals from trusty “Midge,” we only needed to dine out once per day which, again, saved us money in the end. So, even though you may pay a decent amount of money at a food store, it’s less expensive, in my experience, than dining out often. And let me tell you, those “little” purchases at convenient stores and airport stores ADD UP. Way up. I’d rather save the money for a cute shirt or something anyhow!

Make What You Have Work

You can definitely use the resources on hand. Like, the ice bag or laundry bag provided by the hotel, I used this to carry apples, silverware, and napkins in my backpack so they were kept clean. I also saved grocery bags to wrap food-filled tupperware in, just in case of a leak. Also, the shampoo provided by the hotel makes for a great dish detergent 🙂

Home Is Where A Useable Kitchen Is

After five days, I’m super happy to report that we are home. As soon as I walked in the door, I thawed (well, mostly thawed) some tuna steaks for dinner and did the whole unpacking/laundry deal while Lance headed to Publix to grab essentials to get us through a few days. The tuna could have been better, like, if I would have let it thaw before attempting to cook it.

It was late. I wanted to go to bed. Don’t look at me with judgey eyes.

Of course we ate two large helpings and Lance even mustered up a, “It’s really not that bad, sweetie.” Bless him.

I’d love to hear any tips from Whole30’ers out there as far as traveling goes!


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