Staying fit is a constant struggle. It takes up a lot of time and even more energy and, on top of that, you have to find the motivation to keep at it consistently.
But there’s a reason it’s on everyone’s radar. When we make time in our lives for exercise, we feel healthier, stronger and happier. Most of us would agree that dedicating time each day to be better for ourselves is totally worth it and the payoff is significant enough to push through the hard parts.
Finding time in your ever busy day-to-day schedule is a challenge in itself, but things get even more complicated when it comes to traveling. Everyone needs (and deserves) a getaway every once in a while and taking that time to yourself is important for your health in a different way.
If you’ve already got a good workout routine going, or you’re new to the game and want to be sure and keep up the progress you’ve made, you definitely don’t want to let traveling get in the way of your goals. Keep these tips at the forefront of your mind when planning and executing your trip.
Here are 7 tips for exercising while on vacation.
1. Incorporate Exercise Into Your Vacation Itinerary
In the planning phase, make sure you don’t pack your schedule so full of site-seeing that you end up leaving no time for your everyday responsibilities like exercising. Make a plan to get up early and get it out of the way or set time aside later in the day to make it happen. If you want to make the most of your trip and don’t quite feel like setting time aside for exercise, look for active things to do in the town you’re visiting.
2. Look For Free Workout Options in the Area
You may be staying in a hotel with a readily-available gym set up, or you may be in need of a free pass to a local gym. If you are a member of a corporate gym back home, ask their staff if they offer away passes to folks who are traveling out of town. If you have a membership in a major gym chain, see if there’s one close to a nearby hotel you could stay at. If you don’t have that option or are a member of a boutique gym, do some searching in the area you’re visiting to see if any nearby gyms offer free week-long or multi-day passes you can take advantage of. You can even search forums and Facebook for running groups and hunt for the best local running trails.
3. Invest in a Fitness Tracker for Your Trip
Another tip for exercising while on vacation is to bring a fitness tracker with you. Many people wonder, is it worth getting a fitness tracker? For many people, they are. Nothing will hold you more accountable than something attached to your body telling you to get up and move. With reminders and suggestions being provided to you throughout the day based on how active you’ve been, you will be able to keep fitness at the forefront of your mind and, depending on your itinerary, be able to seek out and complete new challenges you haven’t pursued back home.
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4. Make Your Vacation a Workout in Disguise
Stopping to get gas? Get some squats in while you’re at it. Heading back to the hotel? Take the stairs up to your room. Off to dinner? Put on your walking shoes and leave the car behind. You may be doing similar things already such as using a standing desk or going for walks to break up the workday. Looking for opportunities to move makes sense in everyday life, but can especially be helpful throughout your vacation.
5. Get Some Outdoor Exercise While on Vacation
One of the best tips for exercising while on vacation is to find healthy outdoor activities near your travel destination. Wherever you’re vacationing, chances are you can find something to do in the great outdoors in the surrounding area. With most outdoor activities comes an opportunity to get moving such as horseback riding, hiking or kayaking. Go for a bike ride tour along the Florida coast or raft the Trinity River while in Fort Worth. There’s plenty of ways to get a workout and experience a new place at the same time.
Not only will being outside give you an opportunity to see some new sites and get to know the area you’re visiting, but it will pull you away from the usual “food and drink” scenarios vacations tend to revolve around which will help you avoid getting off track while on vacation.
6. Limit Food and Drink…Eating Healthy Helps Too
When we vacation, we tend to overeat and drink by a ton. For this vacation, let go of the “treat yourself” attitude and pick up the “take care of yourself” attitude. If your hotel room has a kitchen, stop by a grocery store and give cooking a try – it may even save you some travel expenses. If your only option is to eat out, eat lighter snacks throughout the day instead of splurging on big meals that will leave you feeling bloated. The more you focus on your nutrition, the better you’ll feel and the easier it will be to motivate yourself to squeeze in some exercise.
7. Take Care of Priorities Before Your Vacation
Going on vacation is centered around fun, but that doesn’t mean you allow yourself to let go of all your responsibilities. Before you take off from work, you should ensure that everything is in order for your absence. Consider having someone house-sit or pet-sit for you for the length of your absence. You’ll have peace of mind and be able to fully enjoy your vacation. And when you treat your body the same way – with continued care and attention – you can head home feeling refreshed and motivated to keep pushing toward your fitness goals.