Ways to stay fit when traveling
A vacation is an opportunity to relax, but if all you do is lie around you’ll soon be feeling listless and you won’t get as much out of it as you could. Keeping fit when traveling only takes up a small portion of the day and can leave you feeling energized as you prepare to take on the rest. However, when you’re away from the gym, from your home fitness equipment and your usual routine, how can you go about maintaining your fitness? It’s actually easier than you might think, and it can be fun.
Getting in shape for your vacation
Everybody wants to look good on the beach, so many people up the pace of their fitness routines, or take up exercising for the first time, as they prepare for vacation. It’s important to be realistic about this. If you try to lose ten pounds in a week, no matter what diet planners may promise, you’ll just end up feeling ill. If you double the amount you’re working out, you may well pull a muscle, which is the last thing you need when you’re going away. By taking a more sensible approach you can improve the tone of your body even if you only have a short time to do so, and with the right level of challenging exercise you’ll improve your posture. You might not be able to transform your body but you can carry it much more impressively.
General health when traveling
Nobody wants to be ill when traveling and you’ll want to have plenty of energy for enjoying yourself, so it’s important to look after your general health. Try to avoid drinking to the point where you give yourself hangovers, and remember to stay well hydrated – if you’re going somewhere much warmer than home, you’ll need to drink more water. Be sure to carry water with you if you’re going on long hikes or bike rides. Eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables will boost your energy levels. Enjoy local food but be aware that you might not be immune to infections the locals can resist, and ask for advice if you’re visiting an area where food poisoning is a common problem. Naturally, you should make sure you’ve had all your vaccinations before you go.
A vacation workout routine
When traveling it’s important to remember there are some exercises you can do anywhere. Push-ups, sit-ups, jumping jacks and skipping can all contribute usefully to a fitness routine. Fill up two 2-litre plastic bottles with water and you’ll have weights you can use without having to increase your baggage allowance. If you’re in a rural area you can go running (ask the locals for advice on good routes and places to avoid), and it’s a wonderful way to enjoy the scenery. If you’re at a beach where there are no hazardous currents you could swim, and other water sports may be an option, such as diving, surfing or canoeing. An increasing number of resorts offer facilities like tennis courts and bike hire, or even on-site gyms. If you’re staying in a city you can look up the location of local gyms before you go.
Packing the essentials
What will you need to take with you to ensure that you can keep fit on vacation? The list is simple but it’s still a good idea to check things off as you go so that they aren’t forgotten. First up is suitable footwear for whatever you plan to get up to, plus enough pairs of socks for you to be able to change them regularly – cotton ones are a good idea as you can launder them easily in a washbasin using ordinary soap. You can treat yourself to some new women’s or men’s workout clothes so that you know you’ll be looking good. Take a jersey or two and a light jacket so you can avoid a rapid temperature drop after exercising, even if you’re going somewhere warm. Make sure you pack your swimming gear, and don’t forget the little things like sweat bands to keep the sweat out of your eyes, and scrunchies for tying back long hair.
Working out on vacation can be a lot of fun. Depending on what you’re doing, it can be a great way to meet people, and there’s often an opportunity to try new sports you’ve never had the chance to take on before. Make sure you’re still doing warm-ups and stretches and using your major muscle groups but don’t be shy of mixing it up a little. You might enjoy it so much that you end up changing your regular routine when you get home.