Sleep, fitness training and meals are activities around which many of us build indispensable routine. Seeing as to how we are creatures of habit, travelling can take a toll on us and leave us in frenzy. Different time zones, inability to prepare healthy meals at will or attend gym as per schedule; I myself have gotten trapped in this cycle only too often, taking 2 steps forward staying on schedule and one step back whenever I travel. But enough excuses! Being on vacation, taking pleasure in foreign delicacies or sleeping in after long nights of partying is no reason to stall fitness progress or healthy eating habits.
In this month’s issue, I share with you easy to follow tips on keeping afloat and up to date with fitness and health schedules while travelling, be it for business or pleasure – even carefully planned out routines can get thrown off track.
In the case of pleasure; travel is usually a means of escape, a time to laze ourselves into relaxation and overindulge on local cuisine. In case of business, one is often operating on tight schedules and can barely catch a breath. Sticking to normal routine may prove difficult. What we want is to be able to substitute and swap unhealthy impulsive habits with easy to do exercises and healthy, easily available food options, as we navigate our travel planners.
Listed below are tips on how you can combine your fitness, health and travel. Some of these can be done before daily activities begin, so my suggestion: work out first thing in the morning!
Equipment free & travel activity related
- Do a glutes and core workout before taking a shower, with squats and push-ups
- Jog around the block or on the beach to familiarise yourself with the scenery. Take care to take safe routes with good lighting.
- Go swimming, if your place of accommodation has a pool or you leave near the beach.
- Walk it off or go hiking: step count during sightseeing activities & take the stairs when necessary
Self-train with a portable gym
- Travel with workout gear. Easy to pack are: Jumping ropes, yoga mat, flexi-stretch bands.
- Use fitness apps and get into action with easy to do movements and trainers that guide you through every step
- Get on YouTube and search for workout videos.
Gym studio attendance
- Drop into a nearby gym or outdoor yoga class. First time visits are often free or discounted
- If you’re a member of a brand name gym, find out if our gym has an affiliate in the location you’re travelling to.
Use the hotel gym
- When booking accommodation, ask about gym facilities. Most hotels usually have a guest gym. Cardio it out or weight lift in the early morning hours before breakfast. This will leave you with more energy for your planned activities.
Carry healthy snacks
- Plan ahead & make sure you always have healthy snack options to fall back on.
- Hunger comes quick when you’re exploring a city all day & the impulse to purchase junk along the way may seem feasible. Bring along Fruits [fresh/dried] , nuts, protein bars.
- Kickstart the day with a big & healthy breakfast, stay mindful not to over-indulge.
- Yogurt & smoothie bowls are easy to make and filled with nutrients. Ingredients can be cheap & they are filling!
- Beware of liquid calories: opt for fruit & veggie smoothies, as opposed to soda, sweet juices or alcoholic beverages. If you carry water with you, stick to that instead.
MAINTAIN HEALTHY HABITS
- Both for fitness & health, it would do you good to start your day of with a cup of water or green tea. Green tea is filled with antioxidants & water provides the much needed fluid intake following overnight digestion.
- Purchase from a supermarket & keep in your accommodation bottled water enough for the length of your stay, otherwise use a self-filter water bottle to purify any unbottled water you may drink.
- Carry a filled water bottle when out sightseeing, this will prevent you from splurging on beverages as well as keep you easily hydrated.
Keep well rested
- Ensure that you get enough rest to take on activities for the following day.
- Jet lag can take its toll, so get enough rest & go easy on workouts, but work out you must as it can reduce stress & feelings of low energy.
Tract your progress
If the goal is to do better today compared to yesterday, tract your progress. It can be difficult to aim for better today if you don’t know how you did yesterday.
Don’t justify taking breaks from good habit by thinking that you’ll pick things up upon your return from trips, make fitness and health a constant and you’ll easily be able to find ways in which you can synchronize your schedules to fit everything in. Eat for health not just for pleasure or out of pure necessity, don’t postpone workouts, drink plenty of water and stay active!
- Memory Herman (memoryherman.me)