How to diet and maintain healthy eating habits working a FIFO role – is it possible?
The word diet often gets a bad rap and the first things that come to mind is food restriction and lettuce leaves. The reality is that we all have control over how and what we eat, and have the responsibility to nurture our bodies in the way that is best for us. Mindful eating/dieting is a personal arrangement between you and the food you eat, so how can you stick to this when working away from home on a FIFO roster, when the meals are prepared for you? We found that this was a popular topic with working women and concluded that it’s challenging – but not impossible.
Before anyone roles their eyes at the word “diet”, there are many preferred ways of eating that aren’t always catered for onsite, such as vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, keto, kosher, paleo, raw etc. not to mention medical reasons and allergies that restrict women from consuming certain foods. While camps onsite provide a wide range of delicious options (most of the time!), they can’t cater for everyone. Luckily, we have some tips from working women to keep your eating habits on track.
1. Meal prep before fly out. Estimate to the best of your ability how much food you will need to take and what kind of things you can eat at camp/what you’ll need to substitute.
2. Make a written meal plan to follow daily to avoid temptations.
3. Take advantage of the fridge and freezers on site by bringing your own food to store or freeze. Meat can be cooked at home, wrapped in foil and frozen at work.
TIP - use silicone pouches to store premade meals to avoid container spills and messes in your luggage.
4. Be accountable! One good way to be accountable is to let your colleagues know that you have a diet to follow or won’t always be in the mess hall for meals (and why).
5. Pack meal prep tools – we’re talking mini smoothie blenders, food scales, whatever you need to prepare your meals.
6. Download an app that keeps track of what you’re eating. There are so many out there so do your research on what's best for your circumstances first.
7. Access local shops near site if possible! Some working women are lucky enough to have camps near a supermarket which gives them a wider range of food options.
Well, there you have it, dieting whilst working a FIFO job role can be done. Our last, and most important piece of advice is to stick to a meal plan that is sustainable, healthy and makes you feel good. Make sure you’re getting enough calories and nutrients during the day to work efficiently and to the best of your ability.
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