Travelling and holidays terrify me! And before you cast me aside as ‘loopy’ hear me out… The visiting of new countries, feasting on new sights, sampling platters upon platters of delicacies are all great, BUT … I miss my fitness routine Yes I really am a weirdo but I do!
It’s seriously hindering and isn’t made any better when I’m stuffing my face on gooey sumptuous culinary delights. Within 3 days I feel like a gobbling, wobbling turkey and soon after I am filled with dread at the intense pain I will have to face when I return to the weights’ rack and cardio circuits. *grimaces* With so much psychological turmoil it’s hard for me to enjoy myself to the fullest; from over-indulging I begin to shy away from treats and by the last 2 days of the holiday I’m eating plain green leaves. Yummy (NOT). BLAH !
The ONLY way to beat this Holiday HOO-BLAH is to stay fit whilst on holiday. I guarantee you, you will you feel better and enjoy your travels even more. I’ve been following this method for about a year and it’s foolproof! And you don’t need to forego any ‘fun time’ at all! Here are my 5 simple ways to stay fit while on vacation …
Do your homework! Get onto your hotel’s website or Google the place where you’re staying and see what’s in the vicinity. Parks? Gyms? Beach? Hiking trails? All are phenomenal places to get your heart racing and your sweat on. You don’t need to be spending hours upon hours; just 30-40 minutes every day. Jogging and running outdoors are both a great cardio and an incredible way to soak in your new environment.
Another thing I do is to walk wherever I can. One doesn’t truly experience a new city unless on foot and this is a sure way to stay active throughout. So ditch the wheels.
Get into a habit of carrying a 500ml water bottle in your bag. It’s a MUST! 8 times out of 10 you’re thirsty and 9 times out of 10 you misconstrue this for hunger downing calorific foods. It’s also extremely common on holiday to down a sugary drink instead of water to quench thirst. Avoid this! A treat every so often is fine but water water water. You need it. Your body wants it. So hydrate! It’s very easy to keep replenishing the bottle at water fountains or purchase bottled water at the next convenience store. Keep sipping on water as you explore the city and you’ll automatically find yourself needing to snack less.
This one sounds odd I know but when I pack for a holiday the first thing I do is do my meal prep for the days I will be away. What I mean by this is account for all snacks and if possible even breakfast. A recent stint in Norway, saw me weighing out portions of protein cinnamon oats in sandwich bags for breakfast for all the days I was there. It was such a relief! I had phoned the hotel in advance and asked if I may use their microwave and they were only too happy for me to do so. Most hotels are very accommodating and this sort of thinking ahead prevents you from eating processed foods high in saturated fats at breakfast. That being said, even if you do eat at the breakfast buffet you can opt for healthy sources of nutrition like eggs, whole grains, fruits, plain yoghurt and herbal teas.
Another thing I did was to weigh out quantities of nuts and some dried fruit, which I carried around with me in my purse. As far as I’m concerned this was instrumental in preventing me from eating unhealthily during the day. I also took with me a handful of my favorite protein bars and these were especially handy when I’d return to the hotel late at night and felt peckish. Room service is a tough nougie to beat but these protein bars were the clear winner because they were quicker into my tummy 😉
It really helps to plan your meals ahead this way. Keeps the calorie count in check, most especially at airports where there are so many distractions in vibrant, attractive packaging. Finally, when eating out skim through the menu and see where you can ditch the unnecessary; you don’t really need those side-fries. Allow yourself one indulgent meal a day and one where you’re more disciplined to strike a balance.
These are faithful, simple instruments one can easily take on holiday and which aids your 30-40 minutes of daily workout. These include sneakers, a yoga mat, a skipping rope and an elastic resistance band. All lightweight (so barely extra baggage weight) and easily portable. Just like planning your meals it helps to plan even your workouts. Once you’ve done Step (1) and sussed out where you’d like to get your sweat on, plan simple circuits of exercises using these tools. Youtube is a great resource for guidance on workout videos to help you here. Personally I’m a fan of doing circuits which include planks, side-planks, burpees, skipping (x 100), squats, jump squats, commandos or walking planks, tricep dips, push-ups, snap jumps, lunges etc . Neither of these require equipment. It really is THAT simple!
When on a run, alternate between jogs and sprints every minute to really get that heart rate soaring.
I know this is the 5th point but in my opinion this is the most important. Sleep deprivation is notoriously linked to being unfit and unhealthy (you crave sugary foods when tired out) so ensure you clock 7-8 hours of sleep. Remember, your holiday is your downtime not just for your mind but your body as well!