Trip starts on a bus. Trip ends on a bus. This trip was buffet induced. I did my best! Read on!
Normal people pack clothes first for a trip. I pack food. I hate leaving my favourite foods behind. If there was a way to bring a personal size oven and kabocha squash with me I would! Work conferences are the hardest. Not that there isn't endless supplies of food, snacks and treats laying around, as my tagline goes "making the healthiest choice your first choice". I am only human and temptation under your nose makes eating healthy while away harder than when you are in your own house surrounded by your favourite healthy foods.
The first day of work trips are the easiest as I can bring a days worth of my own food. Skip the ferry food - tried out my new overnight oats recipe.
Skip the stop at tim hortons for lunch - I brought a killer salad that made a few on the bus drool (well one girl but I'm not trying to impress anyone but myself). This salad was full of squash, mushrooms and chicken.
Arrive at location. Attend a hosted reception. Avoid appetizers by hanging out across the room. In this case, my packing skills mentioned above fail me as it turns out I forgot to pack some essential girl items. Therefore, dinner becomes a 15 minute walk to the local grocery store. Now I'm having fun. I ended up purchasing a pre-made salad kit, some hard boiled eggs and some hot sauce. Toss it all together right in the bag and sit and enjoy in your hotel room while you watch trash tv.
We are a very active workplace. We all work out together regularly with boot camps, yoga and many other running activities happening on a daily basis. So when travelling we all pack our work out clothes. This time we did morning bootcamps led by one of our colleagues! Amazing!
Day two of overnight oats was another success and I am starting to really enjoy this breakfast option. Especially because I can then eat my breakfast in my room while I catch up on who has what weird addictions on TLC. This conference was a lot of buffets. This can be a good or bad thing. Great thing is that my co-workers know how picky I am about my food and made some special accommodations for me. Lunch day 1 was a greek salad (which they had the red onions removed for me) and much to delight there was roasted vegetables! Including cauliflower. After doing a shout of joy and pushing some other people out of way, I proceeded to load up my plate and grab a second plate to ensure I got a good dose of my favourite roasted vegetable. Add your own hot sauce and I'm happy.
We then went to another hosted reception and then it was "dine around"- which is your choice of restaurant and a good way to get to the know the city you are travelling to. Having done dine around before it usually ends up with large groups of people walking around trying to find a restaurant that can sit 20 people. Then you don't end up eating till 9pm at night and with the gym alarm going off at 5am that is way to late to be eating. So I proactively found a sushi restaurant that could deliver and then let anyone know that we could order in food and voila, a large group of other interested people participated! Sashimi here we come! Should have ordered more but got to eat off other plates like I always do was an added bonus. Stealing the carrot shreds and daikon right off other plates as well as of the ginger and wasabi, but nobody could complain as it was my idea for sushi in the first place. Either that or the hungry look in my eyes made it clear that comments are not appreciated.
We then headed out to karaoke night. I can't write anything else due to confidentiality agreements made with those that went.
5am came quickly. A quick 8km run on the treadmill and an awesome boot camp, some amazing overnight oats and I was ready to start all over again.
Lunch again (modified for me) was a delicious lentil soup with tomato salad (onions removed) and oven roasted chicken breast. Add some hot sauce again and another successful menu pairing for a buffet work lunch complete.
Did I mention that I am really happy with hotels these days providing endless baskets of apples and bananas? Such a great way to grab a quick snack. Thank you healthy hotels.
We then headed out to a local winery for the final awards dinner. Dinner was also a buffet and again thanks to the organizers they made sure the salads had dressing on the side and turned the Caesar salad into a "build your own". The trend is catching on, it makes me happy happy joy joy inside. At this point I was really hungry after two hour morning workouts so I created two of these delicious plates for dinner. A ton of salad (one was a red leaf with quinoa and goat cheese, the other mixed in was the Caesar salad) and then I added chicken and salmon. When I came back to my seat the first time some people stared at my giant plate in amazement. Then when I pulled the hot sauce out of my purse, boy did conversation get flowing. See! My strange food habit is a great ice breaker, the whole table started talking about hot sauce, portion size etc etc. And then when I went back for seconds and came back with another giant plate of salad and protein the whole table laughed at my appetite and I made at least 4 new friends.
Back at the gym for 5am and another 2 hour workout. Overnight oats again. Running low on fruit and almond milk now and ready to get home and switch back to my regular delicious egg white fluffy oatmeal!
Lunch was a bagged lunch provided by the hotel. Modifications made again, which resulted in a salad not worthy of a picture. I can describe for your imagination. Lettuce, 4 cherry tomatoes and 2 inch cube of salmon. Thank god for the free bananas and apples.
For dinner, I can tell you that I was so hungry after my pathetic lunch that I couldn't even get the energy to take a photo of it. Picture a GIANT $20 salad from salad loop. Amazing.
If you actually made it to the end of this post then I thank you for being a diligent reader. As I said at the start of this post nobody is perfect, so what I showed you was the meals that I was able to create from buffet and restaurant choices. While I successfully avoided bacon, hash browns, dessert bars, candy bars, individual chocolates, cookies, cheese plates, deep fried appetizers, booze, pasta, croissants etc - NOBODY is perfect. Because you stuck it out with me, I will share a little secret and reveal that I am not perfect, and what I call "grabsies" occur on a daily basis. Little bite size snacks of treats that I don't count as they are "grabsies". Here is my list from this trip - dry cereal, apple chips, smarties, chocolate covered strawberries, cookie chunk, brownie chunk, a few buffet potatoes here and there, a few sips of beer and wine, salt and vinegar chips. Oh man, now that I write the list it seems a bit much. Nope, "grabsies" make it all good.