Vacations are the best. It’s time to relax, sleep in, be lazy, eat and drink…but when you’re trying to lose weight or stay fit a vacation can be a challenge.
My vacations are typically pretty active. Michael and I enjoy hiking so wherever we are vacationing I pre-plan some hikes we can do. It’s a great way to see the area, enjoy some time together and do something active.
Let’s tackle some of the dilemmas.
Dilemma: Flying somewhere poses different challenges: food temptations in the airport and those snacks on the plane that are not only pricey but not good for the waistline.
Dilemma: No gym/pool etc.
Tip: Do something else! Go for a walk and see new sites. Go for a hike. Rent bikes and see the city that way. There are great ways to sneak in exercise while on vacation. Pack a jump rope in your suitcase. Doing the jump rope for 20 minutes when you first wake up will kick your butt!
I am a self-proclaimed gym rat. When I went to Vegas with my friend Robyn we used the gym in the casino we were staying at. Since we booked massages in their spa we got a free pass to the use the gym! We worked out, then got massages and had a great time.
The last time I was in Vegas with Michael we stayed at The Palms. I wasn’t too enthused with the idea of paying $35 a day to use their gym. Solution: I went for a run outside! I ran around the neighborhood near The Palms. I got in a fantastic run, saw parts of Vegas I’d never see, and it was by far one of the best memorable runs.
Dilemma: You don’t want to do your traditional workouts.
Tip: Often doing a new activity altogether is a great way to break up a fitness rut. If you’re vacationing at the beach try swimming, snorkeling, beach running, etc. Take a frisbee to the beach. In the mountains or on a lake? Rent a canoe or kayak. Vacationing in a new city? Check out the local drop-in yoga studio, or take a guided walking tour. Walking for several hours will wear you out! Great workout.
Dilemma: You don’t have time on vacation to workout.
Tip: When you first wake up, do a bunch of push-ups, sit-ups, tricep dips with a chair. If you travel with a laptop, do a yoga video in your hotel room.
In terms of food, the biggest pitfall of vacations is the temptation to indulge. I definitely fall victim to splurging on foods that I wouldn’t normally eat at home. I also drink things I wouldn’t normally drink. My typical adult beverage is wine or a vodka tonic (lower in calories than mixed drinks) but on vacation in Arizona I indulged in a Ghost Orchid–a high calorie “girly” drink. But I just had one and it was recommended by my friend.
The one good thing I did on my recent vacation: eating at home as much as possible. We ate lunch at the house every day (healthy, normal breakfast) and we usually ate lunch at home. Eating out only a few times saved money and calories.
If you’re staying in a condo/hotel/house that has a kitchen take advantage of that. Buy some healthy groceries, cook a few meals at home and try to maintain your normal eating habits (with a few indulgences).
My blog is more about “living in moderation” than anything else. Yes I maintain my fitness on vacation and yes I try to count my calories on vacation–but I still enjoy myself. Splitting that huge piece of birthday cake with 3 other people was much better than making myself sick by eating it on my own.
QUESTION: Do you exercise on vacation? How do you stay fit when on vacation?