Sports and Entertainment

Thunder Follows Lightning: Eating Healthy at Away Games and On the Go

A woman eating a healthy breakfast.
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For the Lightning and for you, good nutrition is key to winning big in body, mind and spirit. The Lightning and AdventHealth partner together and share this goal of feeling whole, starting with choosing food that empowers you to be your best.

To perform their best, the Lightning players are disciplined in what they eat, wherever the game takes them. And as a Lightning fan, you’re the thunder. You can follow the Lightning, wherever the game takes them across the country.

If you’ve ever wanted to eat healthfully like your favorite players but find yourself on the go often, you’re in luck: Many of the Lightning players’ favorite game-day foods and snacks are healthy, portable and delicious, making them good options for you, too.

To make it easier to eat healthy on the go, here’s how you can eat healthfully — like your favorite players do — at every Lightning away game and beyond.

1. Water Is Your Key to Victory

When you think of your nutrition as a team with many different players, water intake is your MVP. Most of your body, and your brain, is comprised of water. And often, when you think you’re hungry, your body is actually dehydrated. Because you constantly breathe and sweat out your body’s supply of water — including shouting at Lightning games — constant hydration is important.

A smart goal to set for yourself is to drink a gallon of water each day to keep your body healthy and happy. When you’re traveling, this can be hard to achieve, but it’s not impossible. To drink more water at home and away, you can:

  • Avoid sugary sodas and sports drinks
  • Bring your water bottle to the game and refill it often
  • Eat fresh fruit, like fresh Florida citrus, which is packed with water
  • Limit coffee and caffeine, which can lead to dehydration

2. Pack Dry Goodies Like a Goalie

A player favorite is oatmeal with a bit of brown sugar on top before a game, which is a quick, healthy and, best of all, travel-friendly meal. Dry foods like rolled or quick oats are easy to pack and take with you on all your travels — and they don’t have to be boring.

You can easily pack rolled oats in your roller bag before your flight, and other healthy, portable snacks like:

  • Coconut or kale chips
  • Dried fruit without added sugar
  • Fiber-rich cereal
  • Granola
  • Peanut butter pretzels
  • Popcorn
  • Protein bars
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Trail mix

3. There Are Nuts for Every Bolts Fan

Another dry good, nuts are travel-ready, nutrient-packed snacks that power up your body and mind. Nuts contain healthy fats (like omega-6 polyunsaturated fat), fiber, protein and vitamins, and can even help you lower your risk of heart disease.

When you’re packing your bag, go for nuts like:

  • Almonds, a good source of protein, fiber and vitamin E
  • Brazil nuts, a good source of selenium
  • Cashews, which are rich in magnesium
  • Pecans, which have antioxidants
  • Pistachios, a good source of protein
  • Walnuts, a good source of omega-3 fat

While nuts are packed with nutrients, they’re also full of calories, so it’s a good idea to limit how many you eat. Stick to eating one serving size only, which is about a quarter cup or a handful.

4. Don’t Pass on Breakfast

The Lightning players take their first meal of the day seriously, and you can benefit from doing so on the go, too. A good breakfast can set the tone for the rest of your day, keeping you energized and satiated.

Always have breakfast before traveling, whether you’re flying or driving. It’s a good idea to bring breakfast essentials with you, too, so you can skip any unappetizing (and unhealthy) options at gas stations and airports.

For a quick and simple breakfast on the go, you can pack some ingredients and buy a few fresh ingredients to add in (like avocado or fruit) once you arrive. Score big with simple breakfast staples like:

  • A banana and nut butter
  • Granola
  • Chia pudding
  • Oatmeal
  • Peanut butter on wheat toast
  • Protein shake
  • Wheat toast with avocado

5. Make a Game Plan Ahead of Time

When you’re picking your seats at the Lightning away game, take a little time to plan ahead for what and where you’ll eat, too. A little planning ahead can be a huge help in preparing to eat healthfully and avoid temptation while out of town.

When you’re organizing your trip schedule, you should also plan to:

  • Explore healthy options at the game venue, too
  • Look for grocery stores near where you’ll be staying
  • Pick snacks you’ll take to the game
  • Research food options in the area
  • Set realistic meal goals for yourself

Here to Help You Eat Healthy at Home and Away

You support the Lightning in whatever weather, and we support you in body, mind and spirit. Wherever your travels take you, AdventHealth is here to help you get, and stay, healthier for longer, so you can cheer on the Lightning for years to come. See how the Lightning and AdventHealth partner to make our Tampa Bay community a better place to live, grow and play.

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