Hectic schedules, lack of cooking facilities, lack of healthy options and no access to supermarkets can challenge even the most food-conscious among us! You’ll need plenty of energy for touring, so a good quality nutritious diet is really important for your physical and mental health.
Give yourself a break if your diet isn’t perfect all the time – sometimes you need the comfort of a familiar food, or an occasional late-night meal with your tour mates. It’s all about balance and what helps you to be at your best.
- Does your accommodation have cooking facilities? If so, what sort?
- Where is the closest supermarket? Is there time in the schedule for a quick shop?
- Can you organise a grocery delivery direct to the hotel through online shopping?
- What are the local restaurants like?
- Were you able to pack a kitchen kit? Or did someone else, and you can share?
- What are your favourite basic nutritious recipes that work for you? Smoothies, omelettes, and stir fries are easy options that pack in the nutrients, are cost effective, and quick to prepare.
Managing meal times
- If you can, have breakfast. It kicks your metabolism into gear for the rest of the day.
- Try eating less food more often – snacks like nuts can keep you level throughout the day.
- Move away from the sugar and towards the protein where possible.
- Know yourself – if nerves or scheduling means you can’t eat before a show or a bump in, figure out when to have your main meal.
- Experiment until you find your rhythm. For example:
Matinee: You might be able to manage a big breakfast, snack until post-show and then have a big late- lunch and a small dinner.
Evening Performance: You might be able to pack in a big breakfast, have a lighter lunch and just snack post-show. Then, next morning, hopefully you’ll be hungry for a big brekkie again!
Eating late at night
- Your digestive system is designed for food to be eaten during the day. It’s relatively inactive at night, which can cause problems if you have a late meal post-show.
- Eating less than two hours before sleep can lead to acid reflux, disrupted sleep and can wreak havoc with your hunger signals the next day.
- If you’re hungry late at night, try eating a small meal containing a complex carbohydrate with a quality protein source. For example:
– Natural yoghurt with fruit and nuts
– Wholegrain toast with avocado and cheese
– Vegetable sticks and wholegrain crackers with hummus
Eating on the road
Roadside eateries are not really known for their nutritious fare, but often they can be the only option.
– Roast meat and roasted potatoes and any greens (e.g. peas) you can get.
– Wraps are a better choice over white bread or burger buns. Look for ones containing some salad and lean meat (e.g. grilled chicken wraps).
– Check if the fridge section has a yoghurt or fruit salad. Travelling with unsalted mixed nuts is great to add to this type of meal.
– Pack a few meal replacement shakes or bars in case you get really stuck.
– Pastry (meat pies, sausage rolls, sweet treats)
– Deep-fried food
– Snacks that are high in sugar that give you a quick high but not sustained energy.