Exercising on the Road

By Karen Psiaki, RD, LDN May 22, 2014

As the weather warms up, we’re all dreaming of summer vacations, road trips, and weekend getaways to the beach. Amidst all of the daydreaming, it’s important to consider how exercise can fit into our plans. Sure, sure, vacations are a time to relax and recover from life’s stress, but that doesn’t mean fitness has to go out the window! In fact, a daily dose of endorphins might be just what you need to get the most out of your R&R.

For the lucky few who manage to design a trip revolved around exercise (ex: water sports, biking, marathons, hiking adventures, etc.), you can just ignore this advice and be on your merry way. But if you’re not a professional athlete or someone planning a fitness-focused vacation, then the chances are that your exercise routine will have to change a bit during times of transit. I travel a lot for both work and pleasure, and as a result, I’ve had to learn creative ways to fit exercise into my daily routine. Here are some tips, tricks, and things to consider:

– Accept that your workouts might not last as long or be as satisfyingly exhausting as usual. Just do what you can, and don’t stress out if it’s not 100% ideal!

– If you like outdoor workouts, then look up the weather forecast and local geography at your destination. Pack a variety of clothes that are easy to layer in case of weather changes. Make sure you have a map of the area and an emergency contact in case you get lost!

– If you’re more of an indoors gal (or if the weather forecast is scaring you!), take advantage of the facilities available at your destination. This might involve the hotel fitness center, a day pass at a local gym, or a trip to the pool for some lap swimming. Not sure where to find a lap pool? Check out this helpful site.

– Is there a flight of stairs in your hotel? This may be the perfect time for interval stair work that gets your heart pumping and sets your glutes on fire!

– Is there a sightseeing destination within running or biking distance? Kill two birds with one stone by combining activities. Take a smart phone or small camera along to capture the experience.

– Do you have space in your room or the fitness center for strength and agility circuits? Let The Body Department’s workout page inspire your routine for the day.

– Are you at the beach? Why not drag a buddy out of bed to go for a sunrise walk-run in the soft sand?! Or consider a beach sport like volleyball, soccer, surfing, and kayaking. Sorry, but sunbathing doesn’t count!

– Got space in your luggage? Bring along a workout video or two. If your suitcase is overflowing like mine usually does, then online workout videos might be the way to go. Hulu’s fitnessTV channel is my personal favorite!

– Be smart about your workouts! Don’t go out in a less-than-desirable neighborhood or during inclement weather, and always have a plan. Be sure to take along a map of the area as well as emergency contact information.

– If you’re traveling with others, take along a friend or be sure to tell your travel partner(s) where you’re going!

Also wondering how to keep up your healthy eating habits on the road? Check out Shawn’s post for more advice!

*This post was originally published on Karen’s website, www.karenpsiaki.com. For more from Karen be sure to visit www.karenpsiaki.com

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