I always go into a bit of a panic before a long vacation because I’m worried about getting out of my exercise routine and turning to blubber. Does anyone sense any irony here? You’re supposed to go on vacation to relax and to take a break from your routines of all forms. However, I’ve done more than my share of travel now, so I’ve found some great ways to completely and totally enjoy my trip while staying healthy.
The most important thing to remember though is that you should enjoy yourself, not think about if the dessert from the Parisian bakery is going to make you fat. When is the next time you’ll be in Paris, and when was the last time one thing made you fat? Enjoy it! Just don’t go overboard. That said, here are some tips for keeping fit while travelling:
-Eat like a local: If you’re in a foreign country, it’s much easier to find unprocessed, unrefined foods that are balanced and good for you. They also don’t have the massive portion sizes that we do in America. If you’re mostly a domestic traveler, this obviously won’t apply, but stick the general guidelines I have throughout the site.
-Share dishes: Order a few small plates and split it all, or you can get an app, entree, and dessert to split with two people. That way, you not only get to try a wide variety of new things and multiple courses, but you can also cut back on the amount you eat.
-Make it an active trip: I found this especially easy in more rural locations. You can hike, kayak, go rock climbing, etc. If you’re in a major city, tour the city on foot. You’ll be moving all day, and will definitely get your fill of exercise in.
-Find a gym: It’s surprisingly easy in big cities. I was just in Johannesburg and Cape Town, and went to the gym once in each city. Sometimes you’ll have to pay a day use fee, but if you’re dedicated enough, it’ll be worth it.
-Bring exercise bands with you: They’re easy to pack, and cheap to buy before you go if you don’t have them. You can work out your arms with those, and you can do push-ups, crunches, squats, and lunges with your own body way.
-Try new and strange things: Snails, spicy bugs, fish heads, oh my! There are a lot of interesting and unique foods you can try out in other cultures, so give it a try. No matter how strange, they’re almost guaranteed to be far better for you than the processed foods we have in the US.
The main thing to keep in mind is that you are on vacation and you should enjoy, experience, and relax. You’ll never do that if you’re stressing about the calories you’re eating or how long it’s been since you’ve hit the treadmill, so just live it up!