The life of a sportscaster is a hectic one. Especially when that sportscaster is arguably the biggest female sports reporter in the country, a co-host on Dancing With the Stars, and spends about half of her nights during the NFL season in a hotel.
Such is the life of Erin Andrews, the lead NFL sideline reporter for FOX Sports and one of AskMen’s Top 99 Most Outstanding Women of 2015. Im traveling for work every single week, especially during football season, Andrews says.
That makes healthy eating — which is difficult enough when you have enough time to actually cook at home and pack meals for lunch — seemingly impossible.
It was something Andrews had to get used to during her first season covering football. I learned the hard way that I really have to put forth an effort to eat healthy on the road, says Andrews. Im the only girl on the crew. Wining and dining with men, with guys who play or played ball, is the norm for me. They have hearty and healthy appetites, and I love a good meal. So I quickly gained a good 10 to 15 pounds, and my energy levels plummeted.
But, as one shot of Andrews on the sidelines proves — look at that waist, those guns! — she has since mastered the fine art of eating on the road and eating healthy. I love to eat, but I try to be smart with what Im putting in my mouth, she says.
And even if you are eating out every night with old windbag clients, flying coach, and sleeping in crumby hotels, you can still learn a lot from her five favorite on-the-go healthy eating tips:
1. Drink More Water
Staying hydrated is important to staying energized, feeling full, and feeling your best any time, but its simply non-negotiable when youre breathing dry cabin air and traveling back and forth between sea level and Denver, she says. Plus, in hotels, you dont know how good the air quality is. You could be losing hydration with every breath.
2. Make Your Splurges Worth It
When you are eating out every night, it can be easy to want to splurge on an extra app or crazy dessert. Andrews saves such splurges for when she knows what comes out from the kitchen is going to be epic. I usually order salmon or another fish, but when Im in the Midwest in a city like Kansas City, thats when Ill have a steak, she says.
3. Start Your Day With OJ
I definitely try to get 100% Florida orange juice in there every morning. I know Im going to get what I need in a day in that glass, Andrews says. Its also easy to get on the road. I know its something I can find in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
4. Stick To The Airports Smoothie Stand
Airports are hard. Thats the one place where you really have to be disciplined, Andrews says. When its 6 a.m., I love a good sausage biscuit. But I know Ill feel horrible after eating it. So, when shes at the airport in need of a meal or snack, she hits up the smoothie stand. Bonus: Orange juice goes great in smoothies.
5. Get More Protein
I know I need protein, but dont like the typical protein bars that taste like chalk, says Andrews, who keeps her travel bag stocked with thinkThin bars. The high-protein bars contain 20 grams of protein, along with zero sugar. Meanwhile, she also loves trail mix (omit the chocolate if youre being really good) and almonds. They are easy to throw in my bag and take with me, she says.