Traveling, whether for business or pleasure, can be taxing on our bodies, particularly if we like to stay fit. We tend to be tired from traveling, or busy doing things like going to meetings or enjoying the sights. The food is not overly healthy, as it is made for taste rather than health, meaning we consume too many sugars, fats and salts. And it is always tempting to have that extra cocktail or glass of wine when traveling. However, there are things you can do to stay fit when you are traveling. Best of all, none of these things have to take up much time and some you can even do as you are enjoying your holiday or traveling to the next business venue.
Why it Is Hard to Work Out when Traveling
The issue with traveling is that all of our usual habits go out the window. If you are one of those who goes to the gym, there may not be one available, or the equipment may not be to your liking. For those who run, there are no routes that you are familiar with. Worst of all, you may just have issues with sleeping if you have gone through different time zones. But there are things that can be done.
Cardiovascular training is probably the easiest one to accomplish while away, although, it may take the most amount of motivation. Most hotels usually have their own fitness centers. At these facilities you can find equipment such as treadmills, stationary bikes, steppers, and even a pool.
Sure, it may not be the same as what you are used to, but it should be sufficient to at least stop yourself from putting on any weight. Besides, after a long day at business meetings or following your other half around through mile upon mile of culturally fascinating locations, it is nice to do a few laps in the pull or run on the treadmill for a few minutes.
It’s all about the Diet
One of the most important things that you have to watch is your diet. Very often, people aren’t actually that inactive when they are traveling. They may be walking seeing the sights, or moving about going from meeting to meeting. The real problem is the food. Because they follow a menu, rather than cooking themselves, they end up eating very badly.
Inaccessibility to the right foods, erratic schedules and socializing tend to be the culprits that make it difficult to eat the right foods when you need them.
You will be happy to know that when you go to a restaurant, there is no need to order salads while everybody else enjoys huge plates. Simply ask to swap your French fries for rice, your vegetables in butter sauce for grilled vegetables and ask for your sauce on the side, rather than smothering all your food in it. Restaurants are very accommodating – the customer is king after all – so don’t be afraid to ask.
Keep Track of What You Are Doing
One of the problems with traveling is that you lose a routine. Time seems to go out of the window and it is all too easy to think you can leave something for the next day, and suddenly find yourself in a position where you haven’t worked out for two weeks. No matter how long you are traveling for, you should always make sure your schedule in terms of exercise remains consistent.
Create an exercise log. Noting each workout (weights, reps, etc.) gives you numbers you can refer back to with your next workout. Plus, it can keep you motivated by revealing how far you’ve progressed – and you will progress, remarkably quickly.
Workout While Waiting
One of the most hideous parts of traveling is that you spend inordinate amounts of time waiting. You may be stuck in the queue at the ticket office of the train station. You may be waiting in the airport lounge for hours and hours as your plane gets delayed. Perhaps you are sitting on a boat waiting to finish the crossing. All of this time can – and should – be used to work out.
A brisk walk or jog along airport corridors is ideal for a cardio workout, which is especially beneficial after a long sedentary flight. A minimum of 20 minutes is recommended, which you can easily fit in to even the shortest of layovers. To complement your jogging, sprint up and down airport stairs or walk against the flow on an empty travelator.
Do make sure you don’t look suspicious, however. Running at an airport is something that is generally not done for long periods of time! Also, check out whether the airport has a gym that you can use. Be creative and have fun, there are always corridors and stairs that you can use for that little bit of cardio.
Don’t Worry about Equipment
You must move away from the idea that you can only work out if you have the right type of equipment. People were muscular hundreds of years ago, well before they had cross trainers, bench pressers or rowing machines. They used the tools of their trade to build bulk. Take the blacksmith, for instance, always depicted with massive muscles from swinging his hammer over his head to hit the anvil. These tools still exist all around you, you just have to find them.
Working out does not necessarily require a great deal of equipment. In fact, many exercise routines can be completed with no accessories at all, as they rely on body weight resistance to tone and tighten muscles while burning calories. As such, travelers can exercise in their rooms using their own memorized moves or the guidance of an exercise app on their smartphone.
Your smartphone or tablet is definitely going to be a really good friend. You can download and install apps, or simply use the internet to find further workout tips. Just remember that traveling, for business or pleasure, does not ever mean you have to become stagnant.