Staying fit when you travel long term is hard work! But the hardest part of getting (and keeping) fit is starting a solid routine you can commit to. Once you’re in a routine, it is much easier to maintain than when you let it slide for a few weeks on a vacation and return home ready to get fit again. So what should you do to stay fit while you travel?
1. Have or make a Plan
First things first make a plan. Before you depart on your trip be sure to set out your goals. Do you want to keep your fitness or improve your fitness? Perhaps your goal is just to continue a healthy diet? Whatever it is, be specific in setting your goals.
The next step is to make a (reasonable) plan. If you’re going to Europe, chances are you are going to let your diet slip a little eating in Europe is half the fun! If you’re going to a hot and humid destination like Ghana or Nigeria, chances are you are going to have better luck sticking to a healthy diet. Whatever the case, be realistic. Consider your accommodation do you have a hotel gym? Do you want/need a hotel gym? Be sure to think ahead and plan in advance.
If you want to workout once a day, consider the time of day you are best to do so in the morning before it gets to hot? Maybe in the afternoon after a big day exploring and before dinner? Whatever works for you!
2. Stick to it
Now that you have a plan, you need to stick by it. That’s partly why it is so important to be realistic with your plan otherwise you won’t be able to execute it!
3. Pack the right tools
Obviously you can skip the dumbbells, but there’s plenty of light equipment you can bring with you. Your best bet is a jump rope. “You burn the most calories per minute with jump rope than with any other cardio. Other feather-light options to toss in your bag: a resistance bands, and hand towels to use in place of sliders. And in a pinch, water bottles make decent hand weights.
4. Choose wisely from your hotel menu
“Try to zero in on their higher-protein options, whether it be chicken, fish, steaks, etc. Don’t be afraid to ask for things to be prepared with less butter, salt, and grease. Ask them if they can grill, bake, or steam your choices instead of frying them. Also ask to hold unnecessary options like white bread; switch them out with a vegetable or even fatty extras on the side. You’ll be surprised at how accommodating kitchens can be.”
5. Be active every day, everywhere, in every way
Unlike a rigid gym routine back home, keeping fit when you’re on the road can be fun, spontaneous, and should always be creative. If you don’t feel like a typical daily workout, take the day off from your usual routine and get creative.
Think about your surrounds can you go hiking, running, swimming,cycling? What about trying a dance or yoga class? Your options are limitless! If you’re not in a city, that’s the best excuse to get outdoors and try a new hiking trail or rent a bike. Worst case scenario, you can always go on a long walk and discover your surrounds.
6. Adopt a No-Equipment Workout for the Hotel Room
Exercise doesn’t require a lot of gear, and provided you’re not staying in a tiny hotel, you probably have the room to workout. From dancing to watching your favourite youtube no equipment youtube videos or even having your own; something like Shaun T’s Max out 30 or so is the ideal weapon. Once again, you have so many choices, and thanks to internet, all this things are assessable.
7. Track Down Free and Cheap Local Services
If a hotel room workout isn’t your thing (or you just don’t have the room), you can usually track down other activities in a new city. If you prefer a gym, most cities have community gyms that offer short memberships, and if you go to a chain gym at home your membership should transfer over to another state. If nothing else, you might be able to take advantage of free days when you’re in town.
Of course, a number of hotels have pools as well, and swimming is a great way to get a quick workout in when you’re on the road.
Traveling is also a great time to think a little more creatively about your routine. If you’re a jogger, taking a run around a new city is a great way to discover it, and with online tools like MapMyRun you can find the best places to run no matter where you are. You can also usually ask the hotel staff for suggestions on where to go (or in some cases where not to go).
If you’re a cyclist, a lot of cities have bicycle sharing programs where you can rent a bike to help you get around the city. This provides a good way to get in a little exercise and get around a little quicker.
Return to Your Routine When You Get Home
How Can I Keep Up My Exercise Routine While Traveling?
Depending on why you’re traveling whether it’s for business or vacation sticking to your routine is easier said than done. With business trips and especially on vacation, your whole schedule is probably thrown out of whack. That’s not always a bad thing, sometimes a break from working out is good, and chances are you’re getting a decent workout on vacation when you’re running around on the beach or walking around the city.
When you’ve missed workout sessions, evaluate your current level of fitness and set goals accordingly. If you’ve been away from your routine for two weeks or more, don’t expect to start where you left off. Cut your workout in half for the first few days to give your body time to readjust.
When you get back from your trip, don’t try to jump right back in again with the same workout you’re used to. Take some time to get used to your routine again, and don’t push too hard. Hopefully it’ll only take a few days before you’re back on schedule.
Source: Fitness First