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Eating on the Road

Martinan / iStock / thinkstock.com

Martinan / iStock / thinkstock.com

Eating healthy on the road is sensible, good for you and totally boring. Before a recent road trip, The Wife cut out an article for me about how a little chopped up Kale, with a drizzle of olive oil is a tasty and nutritious snack. I, of course, immediately threw the column away and went out and bought a package of Fig Newtons.

Munchies
Carrying munchies can keep you occupied while driving,  keep you awake, and keep you from having to stop every hour because someone is hungry. Trail mix is so popular these days it can be found most anywhere. The most popular mixes include peanuts, raisins, almonds and chocolate M&Ms. Now, this mixture is good for you as nuts and raisins are a healthy snack. The chocolate M&Ms do add a bit of sugar to that and while they may help wake you up, they are a bit fattening.

Road Warrior Tip #1: Add a 20oz bag of Peanut M&Ms to really give that Trail Mix some pizazz.

Meals
If you’re travelling the interstate highways your choices are limited these days. In the past there were local Mom & Pop stops where you could sample local cuisine. At the very least there was a Stuckeys every twenty or thirty miles where you could get the old nut log they were so famous for. Nowadays it’s pretty much McDonald’s, Wendy’s or Burger King with your ubiquitous Conoco Station on each side of the exit. If you see a fruit or vegetable stand you may want to check it out. Not because I suggest fruit or vegetables but because sometimes they’ll have burritos, meat pies, or some other greasy home-cooked concoction they’re selling on the side.

Road Warrior Tip #2: If you must go to McDonalds’ or some other fast food joint: buy a couple chicken sandwiches or burgers from the $1 menu. Take the meat from one and add it to the other, chucking the spare buns away. You will have one big sandwich with 2 patties of meat for 2 bucks and less of those fattening buns. Who said I don’t eat healthy?

Pick Your Route
If possible try the state highways instead of the interstate. Not only will you see more interesting sights but you may find better options for dining. As mentioned above, the interstate highway dining options are mighty generic and pretty much the same from exit to exit. On smaller state highways you go through the small towns and not around them affording you the opportunity to sample local cuisine. Look for restaurants with a lot of cars as the locals know what’s best.

Road Warrior Tip #3: Be careful about Mexican food while traveling.


The End Product
If you eat well, or at least eat at all you will need to stop to take care of business, if you get my drift. No longer do we have to suffer the humiliation of asking for the restroom key, and no longer do we have to take the walk of shame carrying a key attached to a hubcap or some other ridiculously large object just to find a small room that should be classified as an environmental disaster area. Nowadays truck stops, especially the larger ones usually have clean restroom facilities and are a safe bet. Most gas station/ convenience stores also offer large restrooms to attract your business. The problem is they are very busy so it is hard for them to keep up with the cleaning at times.

Road Warrior Tip #4: If you must go, especially if you must sit down, stop at a fast food joint. McDonalds’, Wendy’s, Burger King and the like always keep their restrooms clean and are seldom used. Most people come here to ingest food, not to, well, you know…

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