Traveling, although a wonderful way to expose you to new experiences and cultures, has a tendency to throw us off of our routine and schedule. As a personal trainer and fitness instructor, clients always tell me how they will have to suffer upon returning to make up for the indulgences and lack of commitment while away. I am heading to Europe for two and a half weeks at the end of the month and I definitely think that you can still try to maintain your healthy habits while away. I have compiled a list below of all of the things I will be taking advantage of to keep me moving and feeling good while I am away and out of my normal routine.
- Pack light equipment. I have resistance bands, skipping ropes, and sliders that take up very little space in a suitcase. My plan is to bring these small pieces of equipment with me so that even if I have a few free minutes, it will be time well spent getting some movement in.
- Research popular fitness classes/events in the cities you will visit. Nike Run Club exists all over the world and group fitness classes are popping up everywhere. Why not research ahead of time and make it part of your tourist activities to check out a fitness class in a new environment. Not only will you get a workout, but you will get to experience it firsthand with the local people who attend all the time! As a fitness instructor, it is a great opportunity to get fresh ideas to take back to your own classes.
- Create a list of exercises that can be done anywhere. I have a few clients traveling soon as well and my suggestion to them was to create a list of bodyweight movements such as planks, pushups, lunges, etc. where they take a minute or two out of each day to complete. Maybe it is as many pushups as you can do, then the next time see if you can get anymore in. It doesn’t have to be a crazy full workout; just a few minutes to focus on certain exercises will help you master more body weight movements.
- Choose active activities. When people say travel, we automatically think to pack a good pair of shoes for walking! Along with those shoes, choose walking tours or active activities – depending on location – to get your body moving in a different way while you learn a thing or two about the place you are visiting.
- Identify apps that are geared for workouts with minimal equipment and in small spaces. I personally use the Nike Training Club app, but so many exist out there. Take a look ahead of time and nail down some you like so that way whether you have 5, 15, or 30 minutes, you can get a workout in requiring little to no equipment that can be done in the comfort of your hotel room.
- Check out healthy meal options. No it doesn’t have to be vegan and vegetarian per se, although that is when you usually experience something you might not make on your own. Take a look at the healthy restaurants in the area. Healthy eating is becoming more popular and more accessible. Depending on how exotic of a destination you are in, you may get to try local food that you won’t get anywhere else.
- Enjoy! Traveling is supposed to be enjoyable. For me, my trip will be spent visiting family and friends. I am more looking forward to the experiences and the time spent with those I care about, rather than getting that workout in every single day. A healthy active lifestyle is definitely a top priority for me, but so is enjoying this trip.
The above tips are only things to help you stay on track while away. When you put in all this work while at home to stay healthy and fit, of course you don’t want it to all go to waste when you leave. However, it is not the only thing. Forcing yourself to fit in that extra workout should not take away from having fun on vacation. Sometimes those things will collide, and other times you might indulge and enjoy a treat (I know I do) and that is okay. As long as I know that it is a special moment and to keep my healthy habits in the back of my mind, it is not the end of the world. Enjoy your travels, wherever they may take you!
Be fierce. Be strong. Be vibrant.
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