Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Don’t Let Cruising Sabotage Your Diet

I had a problem after my second cruise. I realized on my first cruise that I was addicted to cruising. I realized after my second one that I couldn’t afford to gain five pounds each time I went on one! Working with a newly devised plan, I managed to actually lose two pounds on the third cruise! Here’s how I did it:

Think about what you drink. A Pina Colada has over 600 calories. In comparison, a Cosmo is a slimming 150 calories. Substitute your Coke with a Diet Coke in your high 180 calorie “Cuba Libre” (Rum and Coke with Lime). Beer and wine beat out mixed drinks on the calorie count, but a light beer or wine spritzer are even better choices. One of many online sources to read further about calories in alcoholic drinks is on BNET

Terrific substitutions for sodas and alcoholic beverages are diet sodas and juice spritzers requested with your favorite juice mixed with seltzer water. Coffee, tea and unsweetened iced tea are all calorie- and cost-free. Of course, best of all is water. In addition to the tap water which is safe to drink, all ships offer bottled water for purchase.

Speaking of water, be sure that you do drink lots of it. Water will help fill you up so you’re less hungry and it will keep you from drinking more calories because of thirst. Drinking water will also help keep you hydrated which is especially important if you are cruising in a warm climate.

You’ve heard about the massive amounts of fantastic food that is available. It’s true. But that doesn’t mean that you have to eat it all. Cruise lines are now offering “healthy choices” on their menus which makes menu selection easy if you are food choice challenged.

See something yummy on the regular menu, but just reading the description of how it’s prepared starts raising your cholesterol? Don’t be shy! Simply ask that they prepare your meal without the sauce. There are lots of fish and chicken entrees throughout the week. Be sure to take advantage of all of the wonderful fresh vegetables and fruits throughout your vacation.

Don’ skip meals. It may sound like a silly suggestion given that there’s food available all of the time, but it’s easy to get off schedule when you’re on vacation. You may be busy doing something exciting or maybe busy with relaxing. Remember to eat small healthy snacks between meals.

Cruise ships have gyms and some of those gyms compete with (or beat!) many landside gyms. View this video to see the state-of-the-art gym available on Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas. You don’t have to do a traditional work-out to burn calories. You can jog on the deck or take a fitness class. On some ships, you can work off a dessert by shooting hoops, climbing a rock wall or going skating! Another simple option is to opt for the stairs instead of the elevator. With the size of many of today’s ships, that can allow you to fit in many short workouts!

I’m not saying someone who is trying to keep with a healthy diet shouldn’t enjoy treats you might not have in home, but like Rachel Ray says, “All things in moderation.” With so many foods, beverages and activities to enjoy, give consideration to your choices so you don’t come home to feeling guilt or added pounds!

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