Just because you’re travelling on a plane and food is provided, this does not mean you need to eat any/all of the food that is served to you.
This is especially the case if the food provided isn’t the most nutritious or if it isn’t food that you are used to eating.
Travel, whether domestic or international, is a regular part of being an athlete in most sports. Whether traveling for training camps or competition, airports, airplanes and flying is something that athletes must to learn to prepare for.
Flying can leave you feeling tired and dehydrated, which can ultimately have negative implications for your performance upon arrival.
Paying attention to your food and fluid intake whilst in transit can help mitigate any negative impact.
Firstly, eat a nutritious meal prior to boarding – be sure to include a lean source of protein, nutritious carbohydrate and lots of vegetables.
Then, to combat the varied nutritional value of food provided by airlines, pack some familiar and healthy snacks. These can be useful to replace any nutrient-poor/energy-dense foods that may be provided, or to top-up meals that may be too small for your energy needs.
Here are twelve suggestions for foods/fluids you may like to take with you:
- Fresh fruit e.g. bananas, apples, berries – you may need to eat on the plane or discard before you disembark
- Hommus & cut-up veggies – e.g. carrot, cucumber, tomatoes
- Grainy crackers with natural peanut butter
- Beef jerky
- Make a sandwich with peanut butter or avocado so it doesn’t spoil
- Carmens muesli bars
- Unsalted nuts/seeds
- Protein powder (such as an Inform Sport tested Musashi protein powder)
- Roasted chickpeas
- Chobani/YoPro yoghurt pots or tubes – freeze the night before so they last longer into the transit time
- UHT milk tetra packs
- Water! Pack a few empty water bottles and fill them up once you are through the airport security
If you are needing to keep foods cold (e.g. yoghurt, eggs), pack them in a cooler bag with an ice brick and it will last you a good few hours – eat these in the first portion of the commute.
Remember, preparation is crucial for success in regards to nutrition. Success with your nutrition can and will influence your performance and overall health. Think ahead and make a plan.