When vacationing or traveling for work, it is easy to let the change in schedule negatively affect your fitness schedule. In turn, it makes it more difficult to get back on track upon return to your “normal” schedule. There are ways to incorporate fitness while away from the regular routine. Just like planning your trip details, you have to plan how you are going to stay on track with your fitness routine. The key is to choose what works for you and continue to make time for yourself no matter where you are.
Here are some simple options from a couple sources, www.acefitness.org and “Fitness for Travelers: The Ultimate Workout Guide for the Road,” by S. Scholsberg.
• Pack your bag as usual, but add workout clothes and sneakers and even a bathing suit with the assumption of working out. If your hotel does not have a fitness facility, it may have passes to local health clubs. Use this as a chance to try something new like a yoga class or kickboxing. Set a specific time each day or every other day that you will devote time to fitness. Even 10 to 14 minutes is better than zero.
• Even if you have been to New York for business every month or visit Aunt Martha in Buffalo every year, create a new experience and play tourist. Explore (by foot) the architecture downtown or the latest trails or even the mall. Look at the same old place through different eyes and find new opportunities to add activity to your schedule.
• Bring an exercise tube. They cost between $8-$15 and come in a few different levels of resistance. They fit in your suitcase or gym bag. They often come with an exercise chart and/or DVD with instructions. Many chain stores like Target and Wal-Mart carry them along with sporting good stores.
• You also have the best piece of equipment with you always – your own body weight. Simple push-ups against the wall will do or crunches on the floor. Take the stairs whenever possible. Walk. Skip the cab when possible.
• No matter what form of physical activity you choose, do not forget to warm up for five to seven minutes. Go for a walk, jog or even just march in place. Stretch after. Even those long casual walks can cause muscle soreness the next day.
• Drink plenty of water, especially when traveling by plane.
• Bring healthy snacks with you so you have control of what you eat at least some of the time. Try the local fare only in small portions.
MaryAnn Molloy is a certified personal trainer and the owner of Healthy Body, Fit Mind Personal Training, now located at Basics Fitness Center in South Portland. She can be reached at 370-1348 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org