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People always ask me how I stay fit when I am constantly traveling. My answer? I usually joke with them and say that I’m usually behind schedule, so I have to run to make my connecting flight or get somewhere on time. Between us, it’s usually true, and I’ve done some serious sprints to keep my travel itinerary on track. Staying fit and trim while you travel is challenging to say the least. Travel and food go hand in hand, and the temptation to eat decadently at every meal is part of being on vacation. Combine that with losing your normal workout routine, and it’s easy to see how all those extra calories might choose to stick around.
I would never tell you not to eat a buttery croissant in Paris or a plate of lip-smacking barbecue in North Carolina. Traveling is no time to go on a diet. But since travel is my life, I have had to whip my willpower into shape and not nose-dive into every plate of french fries that come with claims of being famous. Along with moderation, I have found the key is to keep moving and not always in the sweat-pouring cardio way but just working it in here and there. Here are a few of my go-to travel tips that relieve stress and help keep you fit.
Don’t Miss Your Daily Walk, Jog or Run
Want to know a little trick of mine that prevents me from putting off a workout or run? I take the time to set everything out the night before: clothing, socks, sneakers, and a fully charged iPod. You’d be amazed how something as small as being unable to find a jogging bra will allow me to cancel the whole event. Also, I mentally prepared myself by laying it out the night before. I literally have no excuse.
Choose a Fitness Friendly Hotel
Most hotels offer fitness facilities, so you don’t have to miss your gym workout. However, several hotels go the extra mile and throw in extras like running-shoe rentals and complimentary bike rentals. In many cases, they have a fitness-savvy concierge service that will help you plan your biking or running route so you see the sights while fitting in your daily exercise.
Delayed? Don’t Sweat it!
Your plane is delayed 4 hours, why not hit up the gym at the airport hotel and work off some of the stress? Well, I’ll tell you why that delay could change at any moment, and if you’re not at the gate to receive the news, you could potentially miss your ride. Sure I have flight alerts, but you can never trust them completely. Or, if you don’t have time, take a walk through the terminal to relieve stress and get your exercise in for the day. You can count those extra calories for lugging around your bags. When I go for my walks, I’m never more than 20 minutes away from the gate and always 5 minutes away from a departure board. This way, I can exercise, calm down, and make my flight.
Related: [Airport Fitness Ideas]
Add a Few Blocks or 10
If you have the final say on your hotel selection, find a place that’s a mile or more from your destination or meeting location. Walking a bit further, you’ll have a better frame of mind when you get there and become familiar with the local shops and restaurants. If it rains, you can always call a cab.
Use Your Smartphone
If you’re not using your smartphone to track your fitness, you’re missing a great opportunity to make yourself feel better. Whether you use a fitness band or an app, the important thing is you start a program that tracks your movements, and you stick to it. The most compelling thing about this method is that it’s perfect for travel because you eat a lot, but you are also up moving around most of the time. So you can track your progress toward your daily goals and stay on track. You’ll amaze yourself and find it very motivating.
Pack Up Your Good Habits
This one seems obvious, but it is my best advice. If there is something that you do all the time that you believe is critical to your success, then pack it up and take it on the road. Whatever it is. If you track your diet as part of your normal routine, then take time to do some activity when you travel. Knowing that you’re accounting for all that wonderful food will give you less stress. Just give yourself more allowances on travel days and make up for it with extra walking to see the sights. If you always eat a healthy breakfast, do the same when traveling.
How do you stick to your fitness routine when you travel?