I’ve made exercise a consistent habit in my life. I’m one of those people that consistent has to be moving and doing something. When in San Francisco that meant feeding my SoulCycle addiction 3-4 times per week and keeping balanced with yoga 4-5 times a week, with the occasional throwing in a Bikram session or pilates reformer session. In Portland, boxing, sculpt yoga and megaformer classes have been my go-to. And, even while we traveled around as digital nomads, my husband Gregg and I managed to keep a routine beyond the ridiculous amount of walking we did on any given day.
But, I get it…
Keeping fit while traveling can be difficult if not an impossible task to manage. Especially if you are traveling for work, the demands of a busy schedule, rushing around from place to place, can leave you with absolutely no time to keep up your regular exercise program. Staying in shape relies on one major factor-consistency. Consistency in what you eat and consistency in your fitness program will ensure that you keep fit and healthy all the time. But what happens when you are on the move all the time?
Traveling for pleasure is also a difficult time to keep up the fitness regime. A glass of wine and a nice juicy burger seems much more attractive than trying to find yourself a safe and appropriate place to exercise in a foreign city.
1. HAVE THE RIGHT MINDSET
Working out while traveling can be easy, but only if you have the right mindset. Leaving with only vague ideas about exercise will give you every opportunity to make excuses when exhaustion, stress, and responsibilities start piling up. Instead, plan ahead. Pack workout clothes and shoes and research your destination to learn about your hotel’s gym access or other opportunities to exercise in the area. Exercising doesn’t need to be an elaborate, exhaustive process, especially when you’re on the road. Even doing something simple make a difference for your overall health.
2. SCOPE OUT THE FITNESS SCENE
In almost any location you visit, you’ll be bound to find a yoga studio, a gym or studio. With apps like ClassPass, it makes it easy to find studios near you!
3. PACK THE RIGHT TOOLS
Obviously you can skip the dumbbells, but there’s plenty of light equipment you can bring with you. Your best bet is a jump rope. You burn the most calories per minute with jump rope than with any other cardio. Other feather-light options to toss in your suitcase are resistance bands, and in a pinch, water bottles make decent hand weights.
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4. STAY ACTIVE
Whether it’s biking around town, walking over taking a cab or going for a hike, I like to stay active. Finding ways to stay active is important. Choosing to walk or bike over taking a cab or metro is great exercise and a great way to explore and see a city. From swimming at the beach or hotel pool to running – the list is endless.
5. WORKOUT ANYWHERE
With online services like Barre3 or Physice57, they allow you to workout virtually anywhere and maintain a practice from where ever. And, of course, there is Instagram! There are so many fitness babes on there to get workouts from. My favorite is Tara Laferrara of @Lafitara!
6. EXERCISE FIRST THING IN THE MORNING
When we are on vacation or traveling it is even easier to let ourselves give excuses as to why we can’t exercise. This is especially true as we get later in the day; stuff happens, things come up and fun times appear spontaneously.Exercising in the morning will have you feeling unbelievably better about being done with your exercise and ready to move on with the days’ adventures, trust me.
7. TONE IT UP WITH YOUTUBE
Tone It Up is the brainchild of best friends Katrina Scott and Karena Dawn — two adorable, super-fit trainers (whom I wish I was friends with), started out filming their workouts on the beaches of Southern California and posting them on YouTube. Today, Tone It Up is a multi-million dollar fitness empire that includes everything from a nutrition plan to workout DVDs, to protein powders, to a reality show on Bravo. Staying fit while traveling with Tone It Up is so simple. You can use the videos on YouTube or Subscribe to their newsletter that includes a monthly workout plan — all for free. The best part is that you can work out in the comfort of your hotel room and use furniture as props.
8. STAY MOTIVATED
I’m a big fan of informative and motivating email newsletters. With most of my reading falling under technology, travel, and culture; Mind Body Green is an encouraging resource for health, fitness, and lifestyle content that changes up my regular literary intake. The newsletters offer great advice on diet and nutrition; fitness routines; and lifestyle changes (habit techniques, meditation, and positive thinking). I particularly like this letter because it’s clean and nicely organized, and it’s right to the point which makes for a quick skim when you’ve got a big day of reading, sightseeing and exploring.
9. HOTEL GYM SCENE
When booking your business or holiday accommodation, find out if they have a gym on the premises. Many of the upmarket hotels have a spa and a fully kitted out gym as a standard addition, and you will not have to travel anywhere to fit your exercise regime into your day and keeping fit will be easier than ever, because apart from completely different scenery, you can still keep some of your daily routine intact.
10. STAY COMMITTED
If you are on an extended trip away from your home, stay focused and committed to staying in shape. Try and remember all the hard work that you have put in before you left home and even though you may not be able to continue the high pace of your workouts away from home, try and implement a steady maintenance work out for keeping fit. Take the stairs, avoid the lift, get your taxi to drop you off a few blocks from the office or your hotel and walk the rest of the way. If you are committed, you will find it easier to maintain your focus.