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15 Travel Fitness Hacks to Stay in Shape

15 Travel Fitness Hacks to Stay in Shape

As a naturally skinny guy who has always struggled to put on mass until recently, I’m scared of losing anything that I have gained from all of my hard work over the years. So how do you maintain your current mass or — if you have the opposite problem — lose weight while you’re traveling?

It can be a struggle, especially when you have no set schedule or routine. Plus, who wants to spend their vacation working out when there are so many better things to do? If you follow these travel fitness hacks and work out three to four times a week for 30 minute intervals, you’ll be able to stay in shape, or get into even better shape than you already are, no matter where you end up in the world.

1. Eat Nutritiously

Eating healthy foods is the most important part when it comes to being in shape. Without a proper diet and the correct nutrition, all else is lost. Nutrition constitutes between 80 to 90 percent of your diet. Eating well can be a pain while you’re traveling, so just do the best that you can and learn about a few go-to healthy meals that you can rely on in each country you visit.

2. Sleep Well

Getting a solid seven hours per night is optimal for great performance the next day and to ensure that your body has what it needs. The reason I say seven instead of eight is due to a recent study that came out that claims eight hours per night is hazardous to your health.

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3. Give Yourself Pep Talks

Finding the motivation to work out while traveling can be a pain. You need to self-motivate to make sure that exercise is a priority. Tell yourself that once you finish a short, 20 to 30 minute workout, you will reward yourself by eating some fruit or doing some awesome activity.

4. Go Running

When you arrive at a new place, running is the perfect opportunity to explore the local area. You can find new places to eat at or visit that you wouldn’t have known about before. Running can be done anywhere, so this is a really easy way to keep in shape.

5. Use a Park

It can be hard to find an area to work out in. If you do not have a hotel gym or any floor space where you are staying to work out, go to a park. If they have tree branches or monkey bars you can get in a killer workout that you’ll actually feel the next morning.

6. Stretch Out

From flying to taking public transportation, traveling can make your body cramp up very easily as you have to sit in small spaces for countless hours. Make sure that you are staying limber by stretching often. Your muscles need to extend and your body will appreciate a few minutes of stretching out here and there.

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7. Take Advantage of Hotel Gyms

If you’re lucky enough to be staying at a place that has a gym, you can avoid working out in the park and enjoy a workout in private. I’ve yet to be to an amazing hotel gym, but you should be able to get everything you need there.

8. Learn Body Weight Exercises

Exercises like push-ups are invaluable and will become your best friends while staying fit on the road. It’s easy to find a list of great exercises to use online that you can store on a notepad or in your cell phone.

9. Drink Water

Keeping your body hydrated will not only help shed fat, but it will also make you stronger. The majority of your muscles are made up of water, so take a refillable bottle with you wherever you go. It’s going to save you money too!

10. Take Up Yoga

Not only can yoga be calming, but it can be an intense workout that makes your entire body sore the next day as well. If you’re not too keen on doing things like push-ups, practicing yoga is a great alternative.

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11. Go Swimming

Swimming is an exhausting workout and one of the best ones that you can do. If you are staying where there is a pool or you are next to a body of water, jump in and go swim for 15 to 20 minutes. You’ll be exhausted!

12. Plan Ahead

When you wake up in the morning, plan out your entire day. Decide when you are going to be active and make it a large priority. Try to do one thing every day, whether that’s walking, running, or doing pull-ups on monkey-bars.

13. Walk Wherever You Can

If you are able to walk to wherever you want to go instead of taking public transportation, do it. Your body will be happy for the exercise and it will save you money!

14. Use an App

There are a ton of great fitness apps out there that are loaded with workouts that you do not need any weights for. They are also great at keeping you on track by telling you how far you have run and giving you motivational goals to hit.

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15. Enjoy Yourself

Some days it can be extremely hard to get motivated enough to work out. Just try to do the best that you can and keep these travel fitness tips in mind. If you have the option to eat healthy, do it. But if you have no other options, don’t feel guilty about it. Just go with the flow, it’s a vacation after all! You won’t be able to make every single workout or eat healthy every meal, and that’s okay. Your body won’t change overnight and you are there to appreciate the experience.

Featured photo credit: A&A Photography via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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