This week I am headed out to Thailand for a few weeks! It will be a wonderful Christmas adventure and I can’t wait to share some of my travel tips as well as how to balance work and travel. Stay tuned! For now, I’ve started out with a guest post about staying fit while traveling. I know I will be keeping these in mind in order to try and not become a whale from all of the rice and coconut milk I will be consuming.
Staying fit is a challenge! And the older you get the harder it is to maintain fitness. Yet if we are to live a long and healthy life, fitness is an integral part. Obesity and the diseases which stem from it such as Type 2 diabetes are at epidemic levels around the world. This is something that is totally within our control. However, even those of us who are fit tend to forget our fitness regimes when traveling. After all, we are on holiday, so why not do it properly? Well, guess what, you can have a great trip and still maintain your fitness by just following a few simple rules.
Keep Your Mouth Shut!
The success of any fitness regime is more dependent on diet than fitness training. It is no use going to the gym or exercising if you are going to undo all that hard work by eating like there is no tomorrow. This is even more difficult when traveling as you are often vacationing at hotels or resorts with sumptuous, all you can eat smorgasbords, offering mouth watering delicacies.
It is in these situations where you must exert enormous self control and control what you eat. A handy trick is to drink a few glasses of water before eating to fill yourself up. Similarly, it is much healthier for your digestion to eat fruit as a first course rather than a desert. This will also serve to fill you up before you begin your assault on the other offerings. Remember, it takes about 20 minutes from the time you eat something until it reaches your stomach. Eat slowly, and you will find you that your eyes may be bigger than your stomach.
This may be more difficult when traveling on business where you may be expected to go out on frequent business lunches and dinners. In these situations you must select healthier menu options – salads and grilled or broiled foods rather than fried. Skip the desert. It is no shame today to admit that you watch your diet and maintain your fitness. Chances are you will be admired for your restraint.
Also, keep alcoholic beverages to a minimum as they are heavy on calories but light on nutritional value.
Exercising While Traveling
Most hotels and resorts today have a health club with a serviceable level of exercise equipment. Why not continue your home fitness regime whilst on holiday. However, if you believe the old adage that a change is as good as a holiday, then perhaps a change to your fitness regime while traveling is in order.
The best way to discover a city is by foot or bicycle. Many cities have bicycle rental for a nominal price or even for free – avail yourself of it! It is fun, healthy, and adventurous. Similarly, put on a pair of comfortable shoes, grab a tourist map and traipse around the city at your own pace. Once again, you will have the time of your life while extending your life by burning calories and keeping your heart pumping.
If you decide to use the hotel gym, you can reduce the time spent in the gym but attain benefits that exceed those you achieve from a longer workout. You can perform a high intensity workout in 20 minutes and achieve results superior to a one hour workout, saving you time to enjoy your travels yet not scrimping on your fitness. This can be performed whilst jogging, swimming, or on many exercise machines. It involves a two minute warm up followed by 30 seconds of intense activity – as hard as you can push yourself; followed by a 1.5 minute recovery and another burst of activity. These bursts of high intensity activity should occur eight times. The final cool down should be for 2 minutes. A high intensity workout can take 20 minutes and is enormously challenging. It should not be performed two days in a row.
Jump to Fitness
A great way to keep fit when traveling (or even at home) is to jump rope. I used to take a jump rope abroad with me. It is light and compact and provides a full body workout which can even be performed in your hotel room.
In combination with push-ups, sit-ups, and isometric exercises, a jump rope is all you need to keep fit while traveling.
Undoubtedly an easier topic on which to write would’ve been “Staying Fat While Traveling,” yet with a little self-discipline and adaptation of existing habits, you too can maintain your weight and fitness levels whilst globetrotting.
This guest post was authored by Sharon R. She writes about health, travel and business issues and enjoys sharing them; as well she is in activist in creating awareness for cancer treatment in Israel.