Coffee Chat With Our Girl Emily DiDonato ~ The Healthy Travel Tips We Swear By

Tone It Up coffee chat Emily Didonato

A few weeks ago, we flew to NYC to hang with our girlfriend Emily DiDonato and get all her genius tips for you! Emily is a total boss ~ she’s a health and wellness coach, certified yogi, and an absolute sweetheart.  Oh and she’s a super model. About 2 years ago, we met Emily through a mutual friend. Then that same weekend she crushed a half marathon. She’s stunning inside and out!

emily didonato coffee chat k and k karena katrina tone it up

Like us, Emily is constantly traveling. Some months she’s on a plane practically every day. (She even met her fiancé Kyle on a flight. They’re the cutest!) So she’s the perfect person to turn to for healthy travel advice.

With airplane snacks, food in a new city, and jet lag, traveling can be one of the most challenging times to stick to your healthy lifestyle. But it’s also the #1 time you want to feel and look your best. In today’s video, we’re chatting with Emily about her workout, nutrition, and beauty advice for when you’re on the fly ~ literally!

Check out the video and read on below for tips from all of us! Cheers!

You can also watch on YouTube HERE!

Our top tips…

Carry on your snacks ~ watch out for the smelly ones ;)

We always pack healthy snacks in our carry on for the flight. Emily brings almonds and sometimes whole avocados! We love packing Tone It Up Protein Bars or protein mini muffins in a Meal Prep Container. You can even make your pancakes or waffles into muffins. Just add blueberries or any other fruit you like! Check out the recipe below!

We’ve learned the hard way to look out for smelly snacks. We used to pack chicken and asparagus on planes for photo shoots or I’d open a bag of my fave beef jerky and the people sitting around us were like, “Ummm….can I change my seat?” Oops! 🙊

Protein Mini Muffins

**You can double or triple the recipe to make more muffins


1 scoop Tone It Up Protein

1/2 banana, mashed

1/4 cup egg whites

1/2 Tbs. almond milk

1 tsp. cinnamon

Your fave berries

Coconut oil spray

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Mash banana with almond milk before stirring in remaining ingredients.

3. Spray a mini muffin tin with coconut oil spray. Add batter and bake for about 15 minutes. Let cool before packing in a meal prep container.

coffee chat meal prep container tip blueberry protein slim down muffin tone it up travel

Set small workout goals

When we flew into NYC, I told myself I was going to do the bike at the hotel gym for 15 minutes…and I ended up going for 35!! Once you get started, you may surprise yourself. Or if you only have time for that 15 minutes, that’s totally OK! It helps you stay active and stick to your routine while you’re away!

Get supermodel skin ~ at 30,000 feet!

You probably noticed…Emily’s skin is FLAWLESS! So of course we had to ask her how she keeps it glowing while she’s flying. One of her biggest tricks is staying hydrated. She brings a water bottle on the flight and constantly asks to refill it. She also travels with a small bottle of moisturizer and coconut oil. You know we swear by coconut oil…on your face, hair, cuticles! And it smells amazing, so the people next to us are happy! ; )

What are your go-to tips for staying healthy while traveling? Tell us in the comments!

Are you doing the Bikini Series with us? You can jump in anytime! Sign up HERE to join us and this beautiful community as we Tone It Up for summer! You’ll feel so strong, fit, & confident!

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  1. I have a whole pinterest board devoted to workouts I can do with little to no equipment! I travel all the time for work, and many times, the rural hotels do not have gyms – or if they do, they have a treadmill and no weights. I use the board to find substitute workouts so I can keep moving on the go! I usually ask for a first floor room, so no one below me has to hear me jumping for my Booty Call! I also go to the local grocery store and get some food for the same lunch every day – it is boring, but keeps me from making unhealthy lunch choices.

  2. That was adorable. And did I spy the new Bandier line? 😉 My traveling tips:
    1. Sleep through as much of the flight as possible. Eye mask and ear plugs are a must!
    2. Bring a variety of snack bars to avoid the junk carbs at hotel breakfast buffets.
    3. Of you are roadtripping bring the Instant Pot to prep one pot healthy dinners in your hotel room.
    4. If you fly with kids 2-5yo do not board the plane with them during the special pre boarding. Instead send your “sherpa” aka TIU husband down with allllll your gear to set up your seats. Then tell the gate agent you+kids want to be the last to board. Then you literally walk on the plane and sit down, buckle up and take off. The hardest parts of flights for littles are the beginning when you have to stay in your seat. This way you short cut that time frame.

    1. I love this idea about traveling with littles! Mine is only 6 months, now. But great advice for future flying!

    2. Seriously, the timing on this couldn’t be better @toneitup! I had been on the fence about starting the Bikini Series, but after a week in San Antonio that was a total trainwreck food and fitness-wise, I decided it was TIME for ME. I’m going to be traveling more for my new job, and I can’t lie – my waistline and I have been terrified. Loving these tips – both in the video and in all of your comments. Keep ’em coming! xoxo

  3. I’m on the road a lot too, thanks for these great tips! A refillable water bottle and mini muffins have been life savers :)
    Also…Booty Bands are a must! I’ve been looking for a good hydrating face mist – any suggestions?

    1. Oh, and Perfect Fit travel packs were the bomb for travel smoothies, any chance these will be coming back?

      1. Thanks! I’ll check this out, and the others mentioned below, too! :)

      1. The rose water one is my favourite! It smells so good. I spray all over when I travel. Don’t leave home without it.

  4. I travel a lot for work and one of my best tips is to do your research! I always verify I’m staying at a hotel with a gym, or plan out a running route somewhere scenic! I also look up restaurants in my area and read their menus to find the TIUapproved options! I do this a lot when I’m waiting at my gate. But I also always recommend immersing in the culture if you’re traveling somewhere new! Share where you can!

  5. I love this so much! And it is perfect timing since ill be traveling this weekend and eating away from home. It is so true that once you start working out (even for a short time) you can just keep going! Thanks for the great post. :)

  6. She’s so gorgeous!
    My tips: Road trips= lots of healthy fun snacks to keep from buying junk food at gas stations.
    I love protein bars for flights! Kind, Luna, Tone it up…etc.

  7. I always bake and pack some TIU muffins. I do bars as well but I can only handle so many before I won’t go near one for weeks. They work as breakfast or snacks or even a healthy dessert (it always so much harder to resist dessert on the road). I spend a lot of time planning out meals before I go so that I know for every meal where I plan to eat. Some go to “chains” include True Food Kitchen, Lyfe Kitchen, and Veggie Grill. I’ve also utilized meal delivery services like Munchery for when I know the days will be packed but don’t want to be stuck with whatever is closest and easiest. Another fave is to hit Whole Foods and make a salad or quinoa bowl. I personally find breakfast the hardest and love to hear what others do!

    For workouts, I bring booty bands, resistance band, and sliders and plan workouts with little to no equipment. Traveling in the US usually means some fitness facility available but I recently went to Europe where that was less common. I packed a travel yoga mat that weighed only a couple ounces and folded into about the size of a pair of jeans. It allowed to do a workout in hotel room no matter where I was.

    1. Love this! We always pack our booty bands and sliders, too! For breakfast, we like to pack any muffins from the TIU plan. Or we make protein pancakes into muffins so they’re easier on the go!

    2. BOOTY BANDS, YES! I just got these, travel all next week and didn’t even think about bringing them. Perfect, thank you for the tip!!

  8. I read a Bobbi Brown article years ago with a travel beauty tip that said to apply a sunless tanner to your face Pre-flight. It ads moisture and the color sets in by the time you reach you destination so you get off the plane with a little extra color in your face. I’ve done this on every flight since reading the article and it’s my favorite! Usually I look tired and sallow after a long flight but that added moisture and a bit of color helps me look more refreshed and awake. I use Jergans gradually sunless tanner for face. It’s inexpensive and the gradualness of it doesn’t look too dark or fake.
    I travel so much so I’m really loving all the tips everyone is sharing!!!

  9. Great coffee chat! I pack protein powder in individual servings and stick it in my checked bag. I also make sure to have either a streaming service app or workouts downloaded on my tablet. And tea. I always make sure to have tea bags in my hotel room — a cup before going out helps me curb my appetite and make better choices when eating out.

  10. Hi, thanks for the great tips. Home made muffins are a great rescue from unhealthy airport food. I was using BodyShop’s vitamin E face mist when I had to jetset a lot. It was very nice. I think one can mix coconut oil with rose water or distilled water in a spritzer and use it for similar effect. But hydration is the main thing, drinking water as often as possible. Also adjusting the body clock to the destination time really helps to arrive very fresh. But busy people find it hard to practice it few days before travel. Also when I fly eastwards, I get jetlagged and doctors advice to stay away from serious work for 2-3 days when the time difference is large. And be in the sunshine outdoors to set the body clock. Many thanks for all the great tips.

  11. I was just asking for travel tips today to stay #tiuapproved, this is perfect! I’m an event planner and always bring a big empty water bottle and keep it filled while I’m on-site – you never know if there are water stations, or if it’s only available at certain times. Plus, once you fill it, you can use it as a weight for quick, in-room workouts! Love the idea of taking protein muffins – making a batch this weekend!

  12. Thank you so much for sharing! I’m going to be finishing the last few weeks of the Bikini Series abroad, and I was already getting nervous about meals and working out. I love what Emily said about keeping just doing something to keep the momentum going!

  13. Yep, all about that meal prep!!! If the snacks are ready, you and your fam eat well the whole flight. We all eat what we bring and no one craves the in-flight “crap cart.” (Well except maybe a mimosa for mama 😉). I have a little one who is an expert traveler already at 5. She even carries her school backpack as a carryon that she packs herself with all sorts of fun activities!

  14. I’ve been a consultant flying for the past 2.5 years every week Mon-Thurs.
    My best tips are:
    – Don’t be tempted by all the cookies, chips, bagels, fried food, etc. in the lounge. All you can eat is always super tempting for me, so I always stick to oatmeal with black coffee and maybe a banana for breakfast and whatever fresh veggies and fruit are available for dinner. I also try usually grab a hard boiled egg or two at breakfast and stick them in a starbucks to go cup for lunch.
    – Always pick healthy restaurant items and limit the alcohol. Traveling can mean lots of free food and alcohol with colleagues. You may get made fun of a bit, but try and stick to healthy options and limit alcohol to a glass of wine or liquor with diet soda.
    – I don’t like showing up to the client site sweaty, so I usually work out in the evening. Last year I brought my booty bands/sliders/jump rope e in my carry on. That was usually enough to round out the hotel gym equipment and let me do all my daily workouts!
    – For snacks, I usually stop at a CVS at the location I’m traveling to and grab a tin of almonds or cashews.
    – For airport food, if I’m looking for something hot, chinese is always a solid option. I get bean curd and steamed veggies and hold the carbs. Most airports also have at least one smoothie/juice/salad place, so I’m always keeping track of which terminal they’re in so I can find them when I have layovers.
    – I also stay hydrated by always having my refillable water bottle with me.

    Good luck ladies!

  15. Loving all the tips and ideas! Especially love the avocado tip! One question, how do you cut it open without a knife? Do you bring it on board already sliced open? Maybe grab a plastic knife at a restaurant in the airport?

  16. This was a great post! I travel for work and I have been trying to figure out different strategies to keep up with my workouts and nutrition! I pack my booty bands, sliders, jump rope and yoga mat so that I can do the workouts in my room. Nutrition wise I make what I can prior to leaving (muffins, trailmix) but once I am at the hotel I assess what is near me for restaurants and where the nearest grocery store/health food store is to my hotel. Sometimes I am lucky and have a kitchenette with a stove top and other times I only have a mini fridge and microwave. I don’t use microwaves so I eat a lot of my food cold but in those hotels I have been using a mini crockpot to cook up some healthy meals! smoothies and overnight oats are lifesavers with no kitchen! Other then that I just buy a bunch of fruits and veggies with some hummus and i make salads for lunch and usually end up eating out for dinner while following the TIU Nutrition Plan guidelines!

  17. A blogger I follow puts a sheet mask on her face before she lands to add moisture, which I’m planing to try next time I fly.

  18. what would the vegan version of this recipe be?? and are those measurements correct?? seems like wouldn’t make many muffins????

    1. Hi! You can swap the egg whites for 1 chia or flax egg. And feel free to double the triple the recipe to make more muffins to pack! xxo

  19. YES thank you for posting this – just got back from one work trip and going on another one next week. Gotta love TIU workouts though since you can do them anywhere ;-)

  20. I really loved this interview. I loved your suggestions and now don’t feel so crazy for packing my own snacks as well. I actually fainted on a red-eye flight from LA to Boston once – ambulance waiting – the whole bit. It was surprising as I am always drinking water on a plane, just as Emily described, but the cardiologist I had to see insisted that I may have been dehydrated and to drink electrolytes (i.e., Smartwater or coconut water) for a full 24 hours before flying. That and if any of you get leg cramps to wear your running compression socks. I can tell you both help immensely!!! As for working out, I have been known to rely on my Beach Babe videos, but I do often feel guilty that I can’t get my usual “full” workouts in. I love the idea of setting small goals. It is so true what Emily and Karena said…you will start out small and usually continue on. Love you all!

  21. Such great suggestions everyone! I leave next Sunday for a few days on the road and I’m definitely going to pack differently, pre-plan some snacks and meals and because I’ll be in San Diego for work- hit the beach for some cardio! @ginaginabobina – I’m with you – mimosas for mama is my favorite. My kids are great at traveling because we’ve always taken them along – to Europe, on long CA coast drives, etc. @toneitup thanks for these fun posts. Can’t wait to do the yoga workout in the morning. I need a good yoga session this week! I’m going to try the face sprays (and maybe the coola face tan/serum) My favorite travel tip is when I get to the airport to buy a fun magazine to read that I wouldn’t normally pick up at home. And face masks/ear plugs are a must for long flights! Xoxo 😘

  22. I’m off to the states in 5 weeks I’m from the UK and freaking out a bit becuase we will be on week 7 of bikini series and I’m on about the 9hr flight, I can do m1 and 2 fine but what about the plane?? They will provide food for my lunch on th plane but how do you make that LCG??
    I’m taking my lightest weights, strings, booty bands and sliders to fit in my bootycalls and protein in my suitcase for breakfast.
    Can someone please help??

    Lots of love

    Chloe xxx

    1. I’m doing the opposite and going from the West Coast to Athens during week 7! I’m planning on making pre-portioned trail mix, bringing larabars and nut butter packets, and picking up single-serving treats (like Cocoroons) at the grocery store before I leave. For M3, what about picking up a salad beforehand or bringing a sandwich? Even a banana with nut butter and honey could be a good option, and just add in another snack!

      I’m also planning on bringing my resistance, booty bands and sliders, though most of my activity will come from walking, swimming and yoga. You might also want to bookmark workouts ahead of time that use the equipment you’ll be bringing and sub in for the daily workout. Have fun while you’re in the US!

  23. This was such a fun and cute video to watch!! When I fly I just pack a bunch of packaged snacks or stuff I baked ( that I know wont go bad or that I can bring on the flight) so I don’t get tempted or snack to much on the bad stuff :)

  24. I have been having AWFUL allergies since before the series and getting up in the morning has been extra hard but this video not only got me up and on my mat today but also inspired me to set those small goals. I love when you three said that these small goals are great, just to keep your momentum going. THANK YOU!! I won’t let these allergies take away my hot butt haha

  25. Prepping my skin BEFOREHAND has made all the difference! Vitamin C serum, then a daytime essential oil to protect against free radicals and dehydration. Then eye cream, *sunscreen* (hello, window seats!), and a little blush, mascara, and lipstick. Let the skin breathe as much as possible. Then when I get to the hotel, I wash my face and do my regular moisturizers and sunscreen :)

  26. Loved this video and all your tips! Hydration is so, so crucial for me that I even set a silent alarm to go off every hour and remind me to drink 8 oz. I figured out that for me, that’s 10 sips, so I can just grab a giant water bottle and drink the right amount each time ;) And with every other glass, I have 1/8 tsp salt and a bite of something with potassium (like a few salted nuts).

    The salt and potassium are really important for me. I didn’t know this, but apparently it’s possible to hurt yourself if you drink too much water without enough electrolytes to help your body process it! I’m sure K&K know all about this and can explain the science behind it. On the TIU plan, we get plenty of them, but with travel and new schedules it helps me to make sure!

  27. You make me so happy and so inspired girls! I swear to you K&K I am not stocking you, I just love all you do and everything about you! ;) You are amazing people with such a great sence of humor, so strong: inside and outside, you have beautiful and honest heart and you are just so blessed! These tips are so helpful and when I hear that you keep on being so strong to achieve your goal it is so inspiring and motivating me to go on and live a whole new best life! Thank you K&K and TIUHQ! sending love! @ToneItUp #TIUBikiniSeries #TIUteam

  28. How long do the muffins usually last? I traveled last week with some chocolate berry muffins and they didn’t taste great after 2 days…do they need to be refrigerated pre- and post-flight??

  29. I travel for work quite a bit, some flights are only a few hours but sometimes I have to go all the way to China and thats a 24 hour travel day. Its hard to stay on track but i’ve developed a system.
    Tip 1: Pack pre portioned bags of protein powder (you can just put a scoop into ziplocks, or buy single serve bags). I try to do 1 per day.
    Tip 2: I grab a salad at the airport with added avocado and chicken (DIA has a great build your own salad option at one of the cafes). I try to have at least one planned meal for the longer flights, especially when you don’t know what they’ll be serving or if you are flying over lunch.
    Tip 3: If there is a meal on your flight, state any dietary restrictions when booking your ticket. I go gluten and dairy free.
    Tip 4: Baby food! I pack a few of the squeeze pouches for longer flights, just make sure to read the ingredient list so there’s no added sugar. I know its a little weird, but it ensures that I can get enough servings of fruit and veggies when traveling. And they’re TSA approved.
    Tip 5: Bring a packet or 2 of emergen-c. The fizz will refresh you, and the vitamins will help support your immune system.
    Tip 6: On the longer flights get up every hour and walk the aisle a few times, use the restroom, grab water from the flight attendent, and go through a few stretches in the galley. Its important to keep the blood flowing when your sitting for hours on end.
    Tip 7: When you finally get back home, to reduce jet lag take a warm bath with 1 cup of baking soda. This will pull the toxins from your body. I swear by this and have talked with several pilots who say its an industry standard.

    I have so many more, but these are a few of my favorites :) Happy, healthy, and safe travels ladies!

  30. I’m also a consultant, taking at least two flights every week and staying in a hotel more than my house! 😵 I have two tips I haven’t seen so far:
    1. Sometimes when I fly I actually put a hair mask on and throw my hair up in a bun. I just find it a perfect opportunity for my hair to hydrate for an extended amount of time
    2. If you travel to the same location often like I do, you can leave a bag at the front desk. I leave a gym bag each week with sneakers, weights, protein powder, blender bottle, and even a kettlebell!

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