Exercise and travel are often things people tend to keep separate, once we return back home though, we find ourselves asking where the kilos came from. A common problem that can be solved by simply adding some exercise to your journey. In this article, you’ll learn 5 ways to stay fit while traveling.
I like to go by the prevention is better than cure motto, even when it comes to weight management and exercise. It’s a lot easier to keep the kilos off than it is to get them off once they’re on you.
This is why we exercise whilst we travel, it also helps by keeping energy levels high, waking you up early in the morning and gives you that extra strength to see those places most don’t go the extra mile to see (sometimes literally).
5 ways to stay fit while traveling
Fitness doesn’t have to be complicated or difficult to do and doesn’t have to take up large parts of your day. These methods to stay fit whilst traveling can be accomplished by anyone, regardless of your current fitness level, you may even return home leaner and fitter than before.
You won’t need any special equipment, special facilities, or any of the like, all you need is to bring your motivation and get burning.
Jog or run in the morning
Jogging or running is one of the easiest ways to get or stay fit whilst you’re traveling.
You can jog or run just about anywhere without any extra burdens or hassles. The great thing about jogging or running is that you can get your heart-rate and metabolism up quickly and cover a good distance in a short space of time.
This is amazing for your mornings (jog or run before breakfast); the raised metabolism means your body will breakdown more of your breakfast, turning it into valuable nutrients for the upcoming day’s activities. Instead of turning that breakfast into a potential fat builder, it’s now the fuel that’ll get you out and about through your day.
Another reason why you should run in the morning is this is generally the time of the day that you have the most control over. You know when you’re going to head out and then you can plan your workout beforehand. Something you may miss when you try to run or jog when you return, not to mention you’ll probably lack the motivation in the afternoon or evening.
Yoga is a great way of strengthening the whole body whilst adding flexibility and balance to your arsenal. It can calm you down, decrease your stress-levels through slowed breathing, and help increase your productivity.
We both practice yoga (Maike more so than myself though) on our travels, and we believe it to be the perfect way to stay fit whilst you’re on the go as you don’t really need any accessories to start practicing. (Yoga mat, blocks, etc. are optional 😉)
There are many different forms of yoga you can do to best match your workout preferences and fitness level, from relaxing flows, or awakening flexibility, and complete body strength training.
My favorite tool to practice yoga on the go is the Alo Moves website, this is a paid subscription with hundreds of yoga practices ranging from beginner to advanced with a mix of intensities and styles. What we like the most about this service is the ability to save the practices to your smartphone and then play them back in even the remotest of locations without any hope of an internet connection.
When you’re on the go and traveling around the world, often the only thing you’re bringing with you is yourself, your clothes, tech or photo gear and a bag or two.
Some of the best forms of exercise come with using what you have available to you and your body is something you sort of have to bring along no matter where you go. 😉
These are also some of the simplest exercises to execute and you’re probably familiar with most of them.
Here’s a quick body-weight workout plan you can use on your next holiday:
- 3 sets of 10 burpees
- 2 sets of 15 squats
- 3 sets of 10 lunges
- 2 sets of 30 crunches
- 3 sets of 10 reverse crunches
Instead of resting between sets, do a set of exercises that execute a different muscle group so that the initial one can rest whilst you can continue raising your heart rate. I.e. 10 Burpees, then 30 crunches, 10 reverse crunches, 10 burpees, etc.
Go to a gym
If you’re one of those people that find their best motivation to exercise within the walls of a gym, then your best bet is it just go find one nearby.
Finding and using a gym on your travels is actually remarkably easy. Most cities all over the world have a number of gyms and these gyms more often than not allow you to purchase a day ticket to use the facilities. Now it may not be the cheapest of options, but if you’re not going to do any of the other things mentioned here, it’s at least an option. 😉
More conveniently, if your travel is only going to be on one continent, you can find places like Planet Fitness in the US, or McFit in Europe, that have gyms in most of the big cities and really affordable plans that allow you to use any of their gyms regardless of which country or state you’re in.
Hike, ride a bike, etc.
Turn your travels into an adventure.
Go to places where you naturally find outdoor activities to engage your fitness during your travels. This could mean you go on more hikes and see more beautiful scenery you never would’ve come across in the first place. Or renting a bicycle and ditching public transport whilst getting around the city.
For the most part, large cities like Paris or Barcelona are easy to get around on foot. It may seem like quite a distance, but once you give it a go, you’ll realize that the subway, or bus, only saved you 10 or 20 minutes and stole some valuable fitness time and minutes to explore the city properly.
Plan more adventurous trips and stay fit on your daily adventures.
Related: 8 best hiking trails in Germany for you and your dog.
Bonus: Think about your diet
Why would you throw all those hard-earned fitness points away by just going and chugging down some food that’s not going to do you any good? By ignoring what you’re eating, you’ll turn your fitness quest into a battle of pushing a boulder up a hill.
Nutrition and fitness go hand in hand, but this doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the food part of your holiday.
- Enjoy in moderation (no-one should be eating 3 gelatos a day, not even if it’s your first time to Italy ).
- Eat real food, meaning, no fast food and not as many store-bought snacks.
- Stay away from liquid carbs, or at the very least, don’t overdo it.
Now that you know these 5 ways to stay fit while traveling, I can imagine your next trip will be a lot more adventure-packed, full of energy and you’ll achieve a lot more of your travel goals whilst enjoying more of the local delicacies.