To stay fit while traveling is not as hard as you think. When you travel, you are more active than usual anyway.
However, food is so much fun! Especially while traveling.
You can try new food in a new destination (my favorite! such a huge part of the entire travel experience), you can have endless choices for breakfast in most hotels everywhere, ice creams in summer destinations, junk food, snacks and drinks along the way, and for unknown reasons, they are all more tempting to get while traveling.
I am not a personal trainer or a nutritionist, but I travel a lot, and to stay fit while traveling is as important to me as to stay fit when back home.
Here are my original ways to stay it while traveling, and if I can do it- anyone can do it!
If you are not traveling at the moment, save ‘stay fit while traveling’ for later!
Disclosure: I strongly believe that honesty is the best policy and letting you know that some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a small commission if you click through and make a purchase.
Sticking to a menu or counting calories is hard
It is hard enough to do it back home, when you have your routine and the right cooking facilities, and even harder while traveling.
You only live once, grab that slice of pizza, taste the curry, try the traditional dish even if you are not sure how to pronounce its name.
To stay fit while traveling does not mean you need to miss out the culinary experience of your trip!
Enjoy the food, It’s part of the experience.
First, and in my opinion, the easiest thing to do, drink water.
Even if you are traveling to a cold destination, and even if you don’t feel thirsty, try to drink at least 1.5L of water each day.
When it comes to soft drinks (yes, including diet and low calories drinks) without mentioning any big brands names, just keep in mind- they taste the same as back home!
Take it as a challenge, more water, and less soft drinks until the end of your trip! let me know how it went on the comments below!
Social drinks such as alcohol and coffee are hard to avoid and let’s be honest, we are here to have fun!
Drink your coffee slow and enjoy your coffee- you are not rushing to the office today!
As for alcoholic drinks- drink responsibly, not just for staying fit while traveling, also for your own safety.
I eat more snacks while traveling than I do back home. I think the main reasons are availability.
Especially when road tripping- there are always snacks in the car!
And if you are backpacking- you carry all your stuff with you (yes, including snacks) plus you can’t avoid snack stops in the middle of long bus rides.
Although I do not avoid snacks completely, here my tips on what to eat and most importantly when to eat it:
Do: Get snacks for long travel days and if you arrive late at your destination
I always prefer buying snacks in advance if I have the time.
Usually, it means having more variety and having the option to compare prices instead of just buying the snacks on the first and sometimes only shop along the way.
When you know you arrive late to a new destination, have a snack with you as well, you will make better decisions and smarter choices regarding your actual meal when you are not too hungry, and you never know if restaurants and shops around will be open anyways.
Don’t: Buy snacks on sale
Try to avoid the 2 for one deal or any other promotions. Yes, it might save you money, but once you get the extra snack you will eat it eventually.
Buy the number of snacks you’d like to eat and not the number of snacks the supermarket wants you to buy, not even for the just in case scenario.
Sharing is caring
If you followed the previous tip you don’t have much to share, but share it anyways!
Although it is quite obvious, we tend to ignore it while traveling – fruits and vegetables are great as snacks.
When was the last time you tried to stay fit while traveling? Share your story!
By being active you will stay fit while traveling and you wouldn’t even feel much effort.
There are so many ways to do it, you can start with sightseeing! here are some cool active ways to explore a new destination:
By walking– main tourist attractions, especially in cities, are usually easy to reach.
Plan your own sightseeing walking day trip with a little help from the receptionist at the place you stay at, other travelers tips, and online information.
Free walking tours– well, it’s tip based but you will have fun and get lots of information that will make you want to tip your guide anyway.
Have you been to a free walking tour before? you should try it!
Usually, the tour takes about 1.5-2 hours and it’s an easy walk with lots of stops in cool spots.
Google free walking tour and the name of the city you are traveling to, to get the times and meeting spot for the tour you want.
By cycling– Rent a bicycle and go sightseeing, faster than walking so you will get to see more things in a
Don’t get lost
Use offline maps! Really easy to use (and free) apps:
Google maps, Maps.me and if you use public transport and not just walking try Moovit as well.
Hike- I can write an entire article on the difference between hiking and walking.
but for now, let’s just define hiking as walking in nature, on a trail and not asphalt, starting from a lower elevation, making your way to a higher one, to see the best view!
Hiking is an amazing way to stay active, enjoy nature, bond with your travel mates and see incredible places
Take an extra step
Play frisbee or beach volleyball, swim and even go for short coastal walks.
Use the stairs instead of the elevator when possible. Don’t be lazy, it is not that hard.
Don’t use the airport’s escalator/moving sidewalk. It’s fun walking on it but hey, every step counts right?
Download a step counter app and keep track of your progress.
Stay fit while traveling by combining fitness with cultural experience,
Try Yoga if you are in India, Practice martial arts such as Thai boxing (Muay Thai) in Thailand, Kung Fu in China or Judo in Japan (the opportunities are endless…!).
Capoeira (If you are in Brazil of course) is a mix of martial arts and dancing, which brings us to dance lessons:
Salsa dancing in Cuba, Bachata in the Dominican Republic and so on.
Create your own workout routine
There are many fitness tips and exercises online, however, I advise you to consult a personal trainer.
it might be an expense, but it will be the safest and most effective fitness routine for you.
Things to focus on when you create your workout routine:
Duration and frequency of your workout- if your workouts are shorter and less frequent than those you do back home- it’s okay and completely normal, as long as you stick to it!
Consistency is very important in order to stay fit while traveling. Even if you got it and you are doing it “right”, you still have those days when you just don’t feel like doing too much…
It’s okay, we are human, and it happens… to everyone! just don’t give up and don’t let it get you, tomorrow is a new day!
Set yourself an achievable goal to keep yourself motivated.
Your workout routine should be challenging! If your workout routine is too easy for you-you will get bored.
If it’s too hard and beyond your level- you will get frustrated and you will not have any fun.
You need to feel rewarded during your workout and afterward.
Outdoor workouts are usually more fun when you are in a new place, however, you can’t control the weather so have an indoor workout planned, just in case…
Exercise Gear for travelers
Using exercise gear will upgrade your workout and will help you to stay fit while traveling. But don’t just fill up your backpack/suitcase with items you might use, pack those items you will definitely use.
When buying or packing exercise gear for your trip focus on 1-2 items and try to make the most out of them.
Also, make sure that the gear you’re getting is easy to pack and light enough to carry as well.
Jump Rope/Skipping Rope
Easy to carry, cheap, and effective! Have fun with it and take it easy if it’s your first time.
I learned the basic techniques from a fellow traveler, but every now and then I check out Youtube for creative workout ideas, lots of information there!
Resistance bands are great to combine with any workout, they make your exercises more challenging and your entire workout more creative! These also come with instruction guide and online workouts videos!
To practice yoga ofcourse!
Develop your strength, your balance, and even your flexibility by using your body weight. Endless options for different exercises. I would recommend consulting a trainer if you never tried TRX before.
Stay fit while traveling is a challenge
But since your health is important, and since it so rewarding it’s a challenge worth taking! good luck!
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