Traveling Healthy in Western NY

I have talked about tips and tricks for Ideal Traveling previously on My Beautiful Ideal. But this time, I wanted to show an example of putting all those ideas into practice. Last weekend my family and I took a trip to Western New York as part of my dad’s father’s day gift. We visited the Corning Museum of Glass, Watkins GlenSeneca Lake and Captain Bill, and The Pennslyvania Grand Canyon.

Along the way, I took pictures of everything we did and more importantly everything I ate to show you that even when dining out and on vacation, you can make the healthiest choices for yourself.

Before we get into the food aspect I just want to say something up front.

I followed my own rule that I mentioned in the other blog entry about travel: Stick to your plan 99% of the time, but when the 1% comes up and you can’t stick exactly to the plan make the best decision you can! I knew going into this trip there was only going to be so much I could control. We stayed in hotels and had to eat out because there was nowhere to prepare food. The only control I had was the Ideal Protein food that I brought with me and the choices that I made. Those choices were not going to be perfect, but I was going to make the best decision I could!

Ok, now we can move onto the good stuff!

This trip was so much fun! It all started off on a Friday morning. We had arrived into Corning, NY the night before and we were headed off to the Corning Museum of Glass first thing. But first, we had to have some breakfast. I had a protein pack in the morning but still went down to the free hotel breakfast with my family.

I knew that we were going to be walking around a lot (I got 13,000 steps that day), so I opted for some additional protein. I chose scrambled eggs, a few turkey sausage links, and coffee.


By participating in breakfast every morning of the trip. I didn’t feel like the “weird kid” not eating. I still wanted to spend time with my family, plan out our day, and enjoy my vacation.

After breakfast, we were off to the museum. And the Corning Museum of Glass didn’t disappoint! There were art installations, demonstrations, and you could even make your own piece of glass! My mom and I made flowers! You don’t realize how much we use glass every day until you visit this museum.

We were at the museum all day so that meant we had to get lunch in their cafeteria. When I first walked in all I saw were chicken tenders, french fries, cookies, and soda. I was kind of worried, what was I going to be able to eat? Luckily, they had a soup/salad combination plate that I was able to get.


I opted for the tomato vegetable soup and the steak salad. The only things that were out of scope for me were the crunchy tortilla strips, carrots, and dressing. I was able to pick around most of the carrots and tortilla strips, and I just accepted the dressing because there were no other options and I didn’t want to eat it dry. It ended up being a really good lunch!

We stayed in the museum until around 4:30. After that, we explored the city of Corning a little more. During the exploration, I had another protein pack to tie me over to dinner. Everywhere was pretty packed since it was Friday evening so we ended up at everyone’s favorite restaurant when you are traveling – Cracker Barrel – for dinner.

From the outside, this might not seem like the best restaurant for eating healthy. However, they do have a good selection of grilled chicken options and salads. I went for the grilled chicken tenders with steamed broccoli and green beans.


That evening I had another protein pack as a snack and that wrapped up day one of our vacation.

On Saturday we got up and headed to Watkins Glen, NY. Watkins Glen is a cute little lakeside village with tons of things to do.

Again, we started off with breakfast. The hotel had western omelets with peppers and ham in them, so I opted for two of those and coffee.


Then we went and visited Captain Bill! Captain Bill’s is a local business that started in 1963 that offers boat rides on Seneca Lake. It was a perfect day for it and we got to learn a little bit about the area during the boat ride.

After the boat ride, we visited Seneca Harbor Station. This was cute little dockside restaurant and we sat outside and ate right on the water. The view was great and the food was even better!


I went for a southwest chicken salad. The only two offenders here was the corn and the dressing. I picked around most of the corn and again accepted the dressing. I am sure there were other options but I just used it sparingly. Also, those jalapenos on top were the best!

After our boat ride and lunch, we took a nap because…..why not we were on vacation! I had another protein pack for a snack and then we explored some of the surrounding areas of Watkins Glen. There were tons of vineyards (and I was good and didn’t taste any wine!) There is one vineyard that is a family favorite – Hazlitt. We did stop in there and pick up some gifts.

We ended up having dinner in a little town at the top of Seneca Lake called Seneca Falls. I learned that this town is the one the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life” was based on. We went to one of my dad’s favorite places – Deer Head Lakeside Resturant.

The food was so good! And this is where I decided to splurge a little bit. I went for the salad bar and the brisket tacos with broccoli on the side (instead of french fries.)

The salad bar had plenty of veggies to work with and oil and vinegar based dressing (finally!) I did opt for some coleslaw as well from the bar.

The tacos, of course, were the biggest offenders of the trip. They came in flour tortillas with corn salsa on top. And I am going to be honest with you here – I ate those tacos just as they are in the pictures, and they were frickin’ delicious!

I made the conscious decision that these tacos were going to be my 1%. That 1% of the time where I just make it work. It could have been worse….I could have gotten the french fries, I could have gotten croutons and all the other delicious things on the salad bar. But I didn’t! I made a compromise and knew that I better enjoy it!

After that delicious dinner, we went back to the hotel to relax on the outside patio and play cards.

The next morning we were heading home. I had some breakfast again, just scrambled eggs this time (and I forgot to take a picture!) On the way home we stopped off at the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon. I didn’t even know PA had a grand canyon! But it was really beautiful!

The canyon was so deep and we were so high up that it almost looked fake….like it couldn’t actually be a real thing! I would describe the PA Grand Canyon as a smaller version of the real one with trees! But, equally as cool! And a perfect example of how pretty the United States can be.

For lunch that day we just kept on truckin’ home. We had some veggies in the cooler and I had a protein pack for my meal.

Overall, this trip was a great one. If you are ever on the east coast I highly recommend visiting any of these places! As far as the food, I think I did a pretty good job (if I do say so myself 😉 ) I think in the future it would be interesting to do this same sort of exercise but with a longer trip. Let me know if you would like to see that in the comments below.

How have your summer vacations been going? What are some of the biggest hurdles you have encountered while trying to remain healthy or on protocol while traveling? Let’s talk about it in the comments 🙂

2 thoughts on “Traveling Healthy in Western NY

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