Thursday Thoughts

Thursday Thoughts: Week 15 – Balance

Thursday Thoughts Balance The Wandering Asian Couple

Finding balance while slow travelling. One of our main goals when travelling to a new destination is trying out all the local foods. We love exploring the many flavors and dishes that a place offers.

A Good Balance

Back home in our daily routine, both Ernest and I always included fitness. We also ensured we had fairly healthy meals during the weekdays with weekends for indulging.

However, our vacations were for indulging; indulging in all the foods and no working out with the exception of walking a lot.

While on this slow travel journey, we’ve been trying to implement our habits back home here. We’ve been working out 4-5 times per week, while indulging (almost) daily but to a different extent. We’ll have a local meal at lunch and/or dinner, but ensure portion control. I also have a major sweet tooth, but have been trying to keep it at a minimum; meaning that I will indulge in sweets/desserts only a few times a week (similar to if I were back home).


We struggled (myself especially) with the foods in Chiang Mai. By this, I mean that I felt deprived. It could have been due to the fact that this was our first slow travel stop.

First, portion sizes in CM is like a kids meal in North America; even for myself, who don’t eat a lot in one sitting.

Second, protein and veggies are a small portion of the total meal with carbs having the biggest portion. Therefore, I felt like I wasn’t getting enough protein and veggies and only consuming carbohydrates.

This is much different than our normal eating habits. In the last month of being in CM, I felt hungry and deprived. This actually was our own fault, as we only later found places that provided what we needed.

Japan & Vietnam

Since these were short trips, we indulged every single day. We knew we only had a limited amount of time and so we made good use of that time. 🙂 But, we also walked quite a bit; again short amount of time and so many sights to see.


After being in Malaysia for a week, I felt like my eating habit has now normalized and feel like myself again. We were/are exercising (at minimum) 4 times a week and have a good balance of trying all the foods with healthy portions. 

However, this was not the case our first week in Malaysia. Since the feeling of deprivation from Thailand, portion control was non-existent. For me, who’s never had an issue with food and control, it was quite surprising. 

So how was I able to get back to my norm? I think I let myself have it all and eventually felt satiated. Having a western (as well as eastern) breakfast buffet offered daily at our hotel may have helped. 🙂

Balance When Travelling

Having a healthy balance of food and fitness is essential when slow travelling. However, finding that balance may take some time. But in the end, good health brings more travel days. 🙂

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  • Reply SL

    So true, “good health brings more travel days.” I will keep this in mind when indulging in healthy meals.

    January 10, 2019 at 10:39 am
    • Reply Alicia

      Health is wealth! 🙂

      January 11, 2019 at 2:45 am
  • Reply WTK

    Hi Alicia,

    Let me cite an example of myself which may be relevant to this post.

    I used to eat a lot during the younger days. Such feeling has been practiced only until recently. I will not feel full unless I have additional portion to a normal meal. This has resulted me in gaining large amount of weight. I adopt to eat the normal meal without the addition. I reduce the intake gradually. Over the period of time, I realise that I no longer feel hungry with the reduced intake of food in the meals.

    I feel healthy over the days.

    Hope that I do not bother with the above inputs.

    I feel that it will be worthwhile sharing my insights for everyone’s benefit on this post.


    January 13, 2019 at 2:50 am
    • Reply Alicia

      Thanks for sharing! We can all learn from each other. We love hearing other peoples experiences and definitely open to learning from others.

      January 13, 2019 at 7:06 am
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    • Reply Alicia

      Thanks and happy to hear that you are enjoying my posts. There will be many more so be sure to keep reading. 🙂

      April 24, 2019 at 9:10 pm

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