Do you workout on vacation?
When I have clients who have busy lives and find it hard to fit time in for themselves on a regular work week, I like to suggest that they focus on movement when they go on vacation. I almost always get the side eye for this suggestion.
Most don’t like to think about workouts during a trip that is supposed to be relaxing and fun. But why not? Why can’t we utilize this schedule break to take the time, the much needed time, to workout when we are traveling?
We don’t need a gym and fancy equipment. So if you don’t have access to those, it’s perfectly fine. Utilize your body weight for any resistance training and for cardio go for a run, a swim, maybe even a bike ride, or a hike! You can also plan activities that will allow you to move but don't seem like you are exercising.
The goal isn’t to beat yourself up, it’s just about moving your body. Creating and maintaining a healthy habit.
How to plan movement into your vacation so you can still enjoy your trip:
Be flexible. You are on vacation. If workouts don’t go according to plan don’t let it get you down. Just find ways to keep your body in motion. Have fun, happy & safe travels!
Try Body in Motion, my virtual personal training program that is packed with 30 minute workouts with minimal to no equipment to help you keep it fun and meet your movement goals while you travel! Get your first week free when you sign up here for my four week tone-up challenge that plans your workouts for you each day for a month!
My Fiancé and I love to travel. We are constantly taking road trips on the weekend. Whether the destination is 20 minutes away or hours away; we are always on the move. Being on the road and traveling can make it hard to maintain your healthy lifestyle when the only places to stop at are fast food restaurants. But don’t give in to the unhealthy options. The best way to avoid giving into the processed and greasy foods, is to prep your own food for your trip.
If we are going on a long trip, I will stop by the grocery store the day before and meal prep. My Fiancé and I took a trip from Philadelphia to Charleston, South Carolina and I filled up a cooler with foods that we could eat on the way down. It saved us money, time, and our health.
Great road snacks:
Stay Active Wherever you Go
I am in Costa Rica on a family vacation. Many people have trouble staying active and eating right while on vacations, but I feel as though my family and I really understand the importance of a healthy lifestyle and can implement it everywhere we go. On this trip are my parents, my two sisters (Trina and Theresa), my nephew (Justin), and my boyfriend (Stew). Seven of us in a foreign country, with beautiful weather, how can we not be physically active?!?
Day 1 - January 25
The Flight - Tips on Airport Food
To get to Costa Rica we flew from Philly to D.C. to San Jose, Costa Rica. It was a 7-hour flight including layovers. With this we walked around, carrying our bags around the airports to our gates, and had to make sure we got something to eat and drink during our travels. Anytime there were stairs, we walked up and down- instead of taking the escalator or elevator (since we didn’t have too many carry ons). I carried a filtered – reusable water bottle, so I could fill it up in the airport (It is important that you stay hydrated, even when you travel). We left early in the morning in Philly and did not need any food, however when we arrived to D.C. we had to have breakfast. We found an airport restaurant that had eggs, and Stew and I ordered a vegetable omelet.
It can be tough to keep a healthy diet while walking around the airport because most places are fast food style. You need to decide what you would like, and figure out how to make it healthy. Do you want an egg? Try to avoid an egg sandwich with cheese, and ask for eggs mixed with veggies either scrambled or omelets style. Do you want a sandwich? Try to stop in the airport that makes them for you rather then one that has them already prepared, if you are not in too much of a hurry. You can also grab fruits that some convenience stores offer – bars and nuts are good snacks as well for the plane ride.
A good idea for the plane trips, to help maintain your home dieting, would be to pack your snacks and meals for your trip. Sandwiches, a salad, fruits, bars, nuts. This is a good way to keep from breaking your eating habits.
When we arrived, obviously the first thing we wanted to do was to explore and see everything around us, so in order to do that we walked around the resort, “Los Suenos.” The first day our physical activity came from walking. For the majority of the trip we walked everywhere we needed to go.
Day 2 - January 26
The sun came up and Stew, Trina, Theresa, Justin, and I decided to start our morning off with a run. We all went in separate directions, but started together. Stew and I ran down to a marina, through the pathways along the shoreline to the beach. When we arrived to the beach we switched from running to walking. Exploring the Costa Rican local life while enjoying a walk/run en la playa.
To get the food we had to walk about 2 miles to the supermarket to get what we needed for the night.
Stew and I cooked dinner for my family – Stuffed red peppers with a fresh salad. The peppers were stuffed with beans and rice – onions and garlic, and tomato sauce. The salad was made with lettuce, garbanzo beans (chickpeas), tomatoes, red onions, olives, ground pepper, and for the dressing I made guacamole with fresh avocados.
Day 3 - January 27
ZIP LINING (Canopy)
What is it Working
Zip Lining is a great activity! It’s exciting and a dare devil “sport.” Believe it or not, you have muscles working in your body during this adventurous ride.
Your target muscles are your core muscles - abdominals and hip flexors.
When you are strapped into your harness, you need to position your body so that you are a “human arrow”. This will allow for you to travel fast down the chord. In order to position yourself you lean back, keeping your abs tight, and bring your legs up to flex your hips - you need to try to hold yourself like this at each zip line station.
After Zip Lining we spent the rest of the day in the pool. This is a great activity because we are constantly walking around, swimming, and playing games in the water. For about 15 minutes we did water aerobics - which was a lot of fun. I directed them while they did the exercises in the pool. We had the music going and did non-stop conditioning.
Our workout consisted of high knees, sumo knees, butt kicks, squats, lunges, shuffling side to side, and more.
Working out in the pool is great for everyone! Especially people with joint and back problems.
During the day we had snacks, like tortilla chips and salsa, fruits, etc.
So for dinner we did not need much. We prepared red beans and rice.
Day 4 - January 28
Starting the Day off Right
Stew woke up early this morning ran 4 miles (down and back) to the supermarket. Swam a few laps in the pool. When everyone woke up, Stew, Theresa, Justin, and my dad, joined me in a fitness bootcamp to start our day off right - Active!
We jogged 800 meters (1/2 mile) to the beach and did a 20 minute workout using our body weight, rocks on the beach, and logs on the beach. We did jumping jacks, squats, high knees, push-ups, step ups, bicep curls and shoulder presses, and more. It got everybodies hearts pumping, and kept their bodies moving. It was a great superset of exercises for a short duration. Our cool down was a speed walk back to our apartment 800 meters.
Surfing is an exciting and fun activity to get involved with. My dad, Justin, Stew, and I rented boards, and had a friend give us lessons in Jaco Beach.
It was a beautiful day to learn.
Surfing is a fun activity that really challenges your core and works your arms and legs.
Your core is challenged because you are focusing on balancing on your board during the ride. You start in a prone position (lying belly down on the board) to a quick standing position, engaging your core to keep yourself on the board during the wave ride.
Your arms are working (Rotator cuff in the shoulders, and your biceps and triceps) because when you paddle, you are reaching for the water in front and pulling through to get yourself moving.
Your legs are working when you stand on the board. Once you are in the right position on your board, your hips and knees are going to be flexed in a squatting position - you want your center of gravity as close to the board as possible to help with balance.
Day 5 - January 29
Hiking in Search of Monos (Monkeys)
I had been dying to see the native monkeys of Costa Rica sometime on my adventure here. So this morning the first thing that Stew and I did was hike. A great morning hike up the Mountain in Los Suenos. It took about an hour and a half - up and back.
[[ It was a steep road, which was a great workout because it challenged our leg muscles due to the drastic incline.]]
We kept our eyes opened for these famous monkeys, but unfortunatly we did not see them on this hike. Lucky for us however, we found a beautiful view on top of the mountain - What great motivation!
When we returned to the house, everyone decided to go to Emanuel Antonio National Park, which was about an hour ride away. Here we would see monkeys, sloths, raccoons, and beautiful birds, with a 20 minute walk through the park, to a beautiful clear water beach - Ending our hike with a refreshing dip in the ocean.
(We did find monkey’s this time, along with 2 sloths in motion, and a couple families of raccoons.) It was a great day - Two good hikes with beautiful things to see.
Day 6 - January 30
Moped Adventure with My daily walking goal
Today Stew and I decided to rent a moped and drive around Herradura, Costa Rica. It felt great to not have to rely on the taxi’s and buses to get us around. We drove up to Hermosa Beach (the #1 surfing spot in Costa Rica), drove back down to Jaco, to the resort, and more. It was a blast. But with all this driving around, Stew and I still walked around a lot. We reached beyond the daily goal of 10,000 steps (using my fit bit to keep track), which was good.
Day 7 - January 31
Our last day in Costa Rica. Our last and final activity was kayaking. My dad, Justin, and I kayaked 2 hours out and back to an island off the shore line of Herradura. It was a beautiful site to see and a great way to end our active vacation.
No matter where I go, I always find something active to do. It is not hard to live an active lifestyle whether at home, or traveling - you just have to have the drive to remain active in whatever you do. No excuses, just go out and have fun!
I recently came back from a road trip with my boyfriend. We traveled from Philadelphia, PA to High Point, NC; Charlotte, NC; Hilton Head, SC; and Charleston, SC and finally back to Philadelphia in 5 days. The trip was wonderful and we were lucky to have great weather during our stay, which allowed us to do outdoor activities.
Throughout the trip I realized how easy it could be to veer away from your normal diet and exercise routine. So here are a few tips for traveling that I think are very important.
1. Drink lots of water. Because you are in a new place and on the move traveling, it can be easy to forget about water until you are already dehydrated. Keep a water bottle with you at all times. Fruits and vegetables also put water into your body, so eating these will also help with hydration.
2. Prepare healthy travel snacks. Because you are constantly traveling, it may be tempting to grab the greasy chips. If you are traveling by car, the majority of food options will be fast foods. Preparing your own snacks for the trip will keep you satisfied until you are ready to grab a good meal at the airport or off the highway. You can prepare fruits like, grapes, apples, oranges, bananas, etc. Think of some vegetables that you may like, such as, carrots, celery, tomatoes, etc. Pack yourself pretzels, or multi-grain crackers. Prepare foods that you enjoy and that will help you maintain your diet.
3. Do some sort of physical activity. I know some trips might not be for relaxation and "me-time" but if you can find at least 10 minutes throughout your day to do something it will be better than nothing. Find out what's around your destination area, outdoor or indoor activities. If where you are staying has a gym, there is no excuse to skip exercising for at least 10 minutes.
During our stay at Hilton Head, we found that throughout the island there were bike trails. We rented bikes for three days to go all over the island. This was a great way to see Hilton Head. We took a walk on the beach, and ran 6 miles one morning. While inside the hotel we did some body weight exercises (squats, push-ups, and sit-ups) and while watching T.V. we took our time to stretch our upper and lower extremities as well as our core.
4. When eating out try to avoid sabotaging your diet. I know it's vacation, I know you may not want to cook, I know that you will want to try signature dishes, but this does not mean to forget the way you eat when you are home. I'm not telling you not to dine out, I'm just telling you to dine smart. Don't order a plethora of food that you know you won't be able to finish. If you can't finish your plate, don't force it, take it back to your hotel for leftovers if there is a refrigerator. Eat small bites, and chew slowly so that you have time for your body to tell you it's full. Order water and not a calorie filled drink; try to avoid beers wines and liquor if possible, otherwise try not to have more than one glass. Try to order a dish that has a variety of different foods, like a dish with vegetables, a grain and a meat.
5. Have fun! Make sure you do something you enjoy. If you are on a business trip you want to make sure that you do something for you during your stay. You are in a new environment, and a different place, you should take advantage of this time to enjoy life.
Jenna Webster, ACSM, ACE – Personal trainer specializing in empower busy women to live healthy and active lifestyles!”