Nourishing Success: 5 Essential Strategies for Healthy Eating at Retreats and Meetings

healthy eatings at meetings

As the new year unfolds, many of us are steadfast in our resolutions, with healthy eating often at the top of our list. 

But how do we maintain these commitments in the face of professional retreats and meetings, where the temptation to stray from our dietary goals is ever-present? 

In this post, Stonewall Resort’s Robin Poling discusses some challenges with tips for successfully adhering to healthy eating habits in professional settings. Her tips offer a roadmap for turning our New Year’s resolutions into a sustainable lifestyle.

How to Eat Healthy at Meetings & Retreats

The Cornerstone of Success: Planning and Perseverance

Planning and perseverance are crucial to maintaining healthy eating habits.

Adhering to a healthy diet is more than just choosing the right foods; it’s about being prepared to face challenges and temptations, especially in environments like retreats and business meetings where control over food choices might be limited.

Robin underscores the need to be forgiving of oneself in case of any dietary slip-ups. Rather than giving up, it’s about reassessing and restarting, keeping in mind the long-term goal of personal and familial well-being. 

The “long-term” mindset is vital for turning healthy eating from a mere New Year’s resolution into a sustainable, lifelong habit. 

By focusing on careful planning and perseverance, one can navigate the often tricky path of maintaining healthy eating habits in all aspects of life.

As Robin wisely states, “Healthy eating habits are important, and it’s such a challenge, or else we wouldn’t have New Year’s resolutions about them.” 

The journey towards a healthier lifestyle begins with a commitment to oneself and involves meticulous planning and staying focused on the outcome. 

healthy eating at meetings

Healthy Eating in Professional Settings

When attending retreats or professional events, properly fueling your body can significantly enhance your energy levels, concentration, and overall performance. 

It’s not just about satisfying hunger but about choosing foods that sustain and improve mental clarity and physical well-being. 

In such settings, where schedules are packed and options may vary, making conscious food choices becomes a powerful tool for maintaining your health and maximizing your professional potential.


Robin highlights that for individuals who have embraced healthy eating as a lifestyle, sticking to good habits is less challenging. However, for those in the transition phase, it’s imperative to plan ahead. 

“Talk to your conference planner and make sure that you’re going to have healthy choices available,” Robin suggests. 

She also offers a practical tip: “If all else fails, bring your own food and dine before you go down to an event.” This approach enables one to enjoy social gatherings without compromising on their dietary commitments.

The Hyper-Importance of Hydration

Proper hydration plays a key role in maintaining a healthy lifestyle, yet as many as 75% of Americans suffer from chronic dehydration. 

There are a host of issues that can arise from dehydration including fatigue, memory loss, and an inability to focus. 

Robin adds, “Dehydration can affect literally everything. If you are not hydrated, then the food that you eat does not digest properly, and it does a job on your kidneys and your liver, so your internal organs just depend on proper hydration” 

Proper hydration is essential for the functioning of internal organs and overall health. 

Robin acknowledges the challenges some face in drinking water and suggests using hydration products to add flavor, stressing again the importance of commitment to health.

healthy eatings at meetings

Making Smart Food Choices

It goes without saying, that choosing healthy foods is the cornerstone to healthy eating. 

We understand that’s oftentimes easier said that done. Especially in a group setting environment when your meals are already planned for you. 

Robin advises, “Always check the packaging because a lot of things will say, ‘this is a healthy snack,’ and it’s filled with sugar or trans fats.” 

She recommends unprocessed foods like vegetables and fruits and warns against the pitfalls of complex dishes like casseroles when on a healthy eating regimen. “Keep it simple,” she asserts, is the best advice.

Networking and Socializing Beyond Food

Thankfully, there has been a significant shift in how we approach networking and socializing, particularly in professional contexts. The growing emphasis on health and wellness has led to a transformation in traditional networking paradigms, moving away from events centered around food and beverages.

Robin addresses this change by suggesting alternative ways to network and socialize that prioritize health and active engagement. 

She recommends incorporating activities such as walks, hikes, or team-building exercises into networking events. These activities provide a refreshing change from the usual sit-down dinners or cocktail hours, offering opportunities for interaction and connection in a more dynamic and health-conscious setting.

This shift towards health-centric networking events can have a positive impact on attendees’ mental and physical health. Engaging in physical activities, even mild ones like walking, can boost mood, enhance creativity, and improve overall energy levels, making these events more enjoyable and productive.

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Dealing with Slip-ups and Resources for Healthy Living

Acknowledging that slip-ups are part of the journey, Robin advises against giving up.

“Figure out why did I not keep my resolution,” she says, suggesting using these insights for better planning in the future. She also mentions the utility of various apps and websites for tracking everything from hydration to calories and mental state.

In conclusion, Robin stresses the significance of prioritizing one’s well-being alongside career and family. She eloquently states, “If you are not healthy, your well-being will not be as pleasant as if you were very healthy and driving your activities, your family, your career, not letting it drive you.”

Robin’s insights provide a comprehensive guide to embracing a healthy lifestyle that balances personal well-being with professional and family responsibilities. Through planning, commitment, and a willingness to adapt, we can make healthy eating an integral part of both our personal and professional lives. 

Reach out to our team to explore ideas for creating a healthy environment for your next corporate event or retreat. From engaging team building activities to custom menus, we’ve got you covered!

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