Four Ways You Can Keep Fit While Traveling
Travel is usually synonymous with two things: stress and vacation. Work-related stress, or from travel itself, and the potential weight-gain of a vacation can both be deterred by maintaining your fitness. Eating well and working out are both possible, even when driving long distance or traveling internationally. It just takes a little planning.
One of the most important aspects of staying healthy is what we eat. It is too easy to put off eating well when we travel. Fast food is readily available, and it can feel like a fun treat. However, if you are traveling for an extended period of time, eating unhealthily can really take a toll. The first step to avoiding binging on junk is to be prepared. Pack as many healthy snacks as you can. Raw nuts are a great option for protein, which can help keep you full and not reaching for sugary snacks or foods high in unhealthy fats. You may have to eat out, so be sensible when you do. Swap sides for steamed vegetables or green salads, and avoid dessert and too many alcoholic drinks. If you need a mid-afternoon boost, avoid sugary, processed foods, and focus on whole-grains to give you a carb-fueled boost.
Everyone knows it is impossible to fit everything you need, let alone want, into your travel bag(s). That does not mean you should skip on your workout gear, especially when much of what you need is compact. Fit your workout shoes in, and stuff them full of socks or other small items to save space. Take a jump rope, which is small, lightweight but incredibly useful. Jumping rope is a great way to keep your heart healthy while taking only a few minutes a day, and is practical just about anywhere you go. Resistance bands and wrist or ankle weights can be fit easily in a carry-on, and can add more versatility to how you work out during your travels.
If you have a tight schedule, it may be tempting to jump into a taxi or Uber. However, walking burns calories, especially when in conjunction with other activities. Add some ankle or wrist weights and up your resistance. Flex your muscles as you walk. Engage your core for as long as you can, rest, and repeat. Move your arms as you walk, like a pendulum. This will help your posture and keep your muscles from suffering tension as you move. If you feel brave, throw in some lunges while you go about your way. It is a great way to tighten the muscles in your legs and work bigger muscle groups.
Bring Your Dog
Fido can be good motivation to staying active during your travels. If you take them running at home, they will keep you motivated, even when traveling. All you need is your leash, harness and a good pair of running shoes, and you have a workout partner who can encourage you to keep up your routine. Look into local trails or places to go hiking to experience new scenery to keep your daily fitness engaging. Seeing new things, and being in nature, can be a fun way to explore and relieve the many of life’s stresses, including those associated with depression, chronic anxiety, and drug addiction. In fact, spending some time outdoors with your furry best friend will help relieve anxiety, cut down stress, and help improve your sleep.
While it is okay to take time off from working out, if you travel frequently, or for extended periods of time, it’s a good idea to have a plan to maintain your good health. Learn how to pack well, eat well and work out effectively to help you manage both your stress and fitness. Don’t forget that your dog is your best workout partner, and will only ever encourage you to give your all, so, if you can, pack Spot when traveling.
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