One of the favorite topics of Americans (and, I imagine, citizens of most countries) is FOOD. We want to have enough to be healthy and strong but not so much that it is wasted or that we get fat and lazy. I’ll confess that I’m writing this in a crowded McDonalds, featuring new kiosks, food delivered to your table after you order it from a kiosk or the counter, and a double drive through line that is even more crowded than inside. So, how do we survive on a cruise ship without McDonalds? Easy, we go to one on shore. Seriously, we have eaten in a couple of McDonalds in Thailand and Australia, as well as at a Starbucks. We didn’t need to do so for nourishment, but they had free wifi and air conditioning, so why not?
Most of the discussion of food on cruises is regarding the quantity and the difficulty of making decisions about it. Should I have rack of lamb or prime rib or Maine lobster tonight? Decisions, decisions. And of course you don’t have to make the decision based on the cost of the item, as you already paid for it when you bought the cruise. Even more difficult may be the decision about dessert: molten chocolate cake, cheesecake, homemade ice cream, key lime pie, or something with a fancy French name? The biggest problem is not cleaning your plate at every meal or ordering three desserts, which they’ll happily serve you if you ask. On one cruise a dinner companion, who was not a big guy, ordered two different entrees at each meal, and ate both of them. Ask and you shall receive.
The buffets can be even more difficult, since you can pick some of everything while trying to avoid taking too much of each thing. On most ships food is available in one location or another 24 hours a day, and if you don’t feel like leaving your stateroom, there is always the 24 hour room service.
Fortunately, there are plenty of opportunities to exercise away all of those calories you ate. Ships have a workout area with treadmills and such, and may have a trainer or classes for those who are interested, as well as one or more swimming pools, though most aren’t big enough to swim laps. Our ship has a walking/jogging track that goes above the swimming pool, and that is my main exercise area. Since I don’t like treadmills, preferring to control my own pace and variations in pace, my indoor exercise when necessary is walking the passageways inside. Most of them are a couple hundred yards long, so some walking back and forth the length of the ship a few times adds up pretty quickly. Most of our day trips off of the ship include quite a bit of walking also, so that helps as well.
Just as in the rest of life, how you control your exercise and eating is up to only one person. YOU. It is possible to be sane and healthy on a cruise with both.