I'm just back from a nine-day trip to California and I am pleased to say I still was able to shed three pounds, despite some unavoidable slippage. I consider that a major victory considering that keeping my eating on track was difficult, especially during the time I was in a hotel room and attending business functions.

How did I do it? Planning, planning, planning. My dear friend Eleanor, who has been in food addiction recovery for ten years, shared some helpful ways to get organized. her major caveat: Plan your food and don't let yourself get distracted from your plan.

I carried my injectable HCG in my check luggage. It needs to be kept cool, so I bundled it with a gel pack and a package of frozen cooked chicken breast. To my surprise, everything was still very cold when I arrived. I also had a bottle of my special salad dressing in my luggage, carefully sealed in plastic bags to prevent leakage.  

For food along the way, I had some more frozen chicken breast and lots of celery sticks, sliced peppers, cherry tomatoes, raw broccoli and a couple of apples in my carryon. I gave up on salad since the TSA's no-liquids rule precludes taking any dressing, but finger veggies made sense and were less messy anyway. 

As soon as I got out of the airport and into the cary, I hit a supermarket that I had identified beforehand. It was just off the freeway and I was able to pick up some more fruit and a couple of containers of lettuce to keep in the frig in my room. My only deviation (at that point!) was a package of deli-chicken breast since the home-cooked smoked turkey breast was gone. When I[m at home, i don't eats deli meats, but this seemed like a logical concession. 

I was able to eat breakfast in my room most days and I could usually able to escape for lunch and take a break from the intensity of the business situation where I found myself. A couple of nights, I had business dinners, but was able to remain on the straight and narrow for them. It helps that California requires calorie counts on menus. My biggest deviation was a corned beef and cabbage dinner on St. Patrick's Day, consumed mainly to humor my mother. It seemed to have no negative effect. 

On the way home, I reversed the process and had my chicken and finger veggies to sustain me on the trip home. 

I think my biggest problem was keeping my water intake at the optimal levels, since I was walking around a show floor. I was able to spot water coolers by the second day and I simply visited them several times daily. 

My daily calorie count was probably slightly higher than usual--in the 800 to 900 calories per day range. 
Planning was key to all of this, although there is a lot to be said for the ego boost I got from colleagues who were impressed by my weight loss and congratulatory about the dramatic improvement in my appearance. It certainly makes me want to continue. 

Minus 63 pounds of unwanted fat and still going strong!