Leaving Town? 9 Ways to Take Your Workout With You
Yes, you should still try to squeeze in workouts while on the road. Think you won't have the time? These tips will make it surprisingly easy.
Don’t reinvent the wheel
Whether you’re on the vacation of a lifetime or your regularly scheduled work trip, stick with what works. “The best advice I can give for clients who are going on vacation or traveling regularly for work is to track what you do and to be consistent,” says Josef Rakich, online personal trainer. “If you’re at home and you train three times per week, make sure you still train three times per week when you’re away from home.” Check out these fitness tips to keep you motivated.
Choose your hotel wisely
There are specific hotel chains that offer fitness perks and even supply you with gear. “If you forget your workout clothes and shoes, don’t worry about missing your workout,” says Donovan. “The Fairmont, Westin, Kimpton, Hyatt, and others all offer workout clothes and running shoes on loan. Plus, many hotels will provide you with a running or walking route right from the hotel.” Here’s the truth behind 11 popular fitness myths.
Use a travel agent
“I suggest working with a wellness travel advisor so that you have someone with experience to suggest hotels, resorts, locations or cruises that cater to wellness,” says Jeri Donovan, owner of Well Traveled, Your Personal Wellness Travel Agency, “Clients have loved the vacations I have planned in terms of the fitness activities, spa amenities, healthy cuisine, or active adventure experienced.” If you still want to plan solo but want a little help in choosing your next destination, take this quiz to find out where you should take your next vacation.
There’s an app for that
Choose one of several workout apps that offer body weight workouts so you can squeeze in a sweat session sans equipment. All you need is a little space in your hotel room, the fitness room, or outside in a nearby park. (Rakich also suggests using an app to track your diet while at home and on vacation.) Since you’ll have your phone with you anyway, it’s not that much extra trouble to enter what you eat and if you want some help getting organized beyond your diet, check out these other apps to increase your wellness, productivity and peace of mind while home and away.
Vacations tend to mean an increased consumption of alcoholic beverages, so it’s easy to get dehydrated. Thirst is sometimes masked as hunger. Donovan suggests bringing an empty water bottle on your trip, so you can easily refill it as needed.
Lightweight workout equipment, that is. A resistance band takes up virtually no space in your luggage and the same goes for a small Pilates ball if you deflate it. To re-inflate, get a straw downstairs or from room service, and it only takes about 30 seconds to plump to the perfect size for an array of core and lower body exercises. Here’s how to pack those awkward small items in your suitcase.
Explore by foot
Put on your shoes and head out the door—it can be as simple as that to stay in shape away from home while taking in the local sites. “One of my personal favorite ways to workout while traveling is to run outdoors,” says Courtney Drewsen, online personal trainer at Travel iN Fitness, “When there are places to explore, a run can work as a tour as well as a workout.” Donovan agrees and sometimes suggests clients consider signing up for a 5K while on vacation to get even more local flavor.
Stress is just as guilty of packing on pounds as a bad diet and lack of exercise. Donovan suggests staying active, but not too active since she says, “Signing up for everything will not bring you home rejuvenated.” Instead, she says you should make time for leisurely activities you enjoy and, if it’s not a work trip, try to avoid working. “If you must check in with work, limit yourself to a 30- to 60-minute email session once a day,” says Donovan, “Setting aside a specific time to check-in makes missing work more emotionally manageable for those who simply can’t disconnect.”
Get it in early
Just like at home, more obstacles tend to pop up later in the day (think dinners out and other social and family obligations), so Rakich suggests you get up early to squeeze in your workout if you’re short on time. Drewsen says she likes to workout early “so that it’s not lingering on my mind throughout the day” and she can enjoy her trip that much more.