How to Keep Fit While Traveling

Written By Marcus Corfitz Jessen
March 09, 2020
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Happy Travel: How to Keep Fit While Traveling

Do you travel a lot for work or just enjoy traveling?

How often do you travel? Occasionally, quarterly, monthly, or even more often than that?

Do you work out while you travel?

Do you even feel good about your body when you travel?

Let’s be honest here, I know you might not find the time to hit the gym when you are on a business trip or on a vacation.

The shuttle between taxis, buses, and airplanes from motels and hotels in different cities to new districts or to entirely new countries can be very occupying…

Keeping fit, exercising, and watching your weight during your trip doesn’t always seem to go hand in glove, especially when you are having fun.

However, your health doesn’t have to take five giant steps back each time you go on a trip. I have put together a few simple tips and tricks to help you keep fit and remain healthy while traveling.

In reality, it’s easy to stay healthy as long as you can avoid the excuses of being too tired or lazy to train and avoid eating crap most of the time.

I have put it in a simple happy travel formula (which I stole from someone else on the internet):

Eat healthily, Exercise well and Enjoy! (3Es)

In my opinion, this also summarizes the blueprint for a healthy living which is taking care of yourself and still trying out all the fun stuff.

Avoid Eating Crap All The Time

First, let us talk about Eating Healthy for a happy travel.

Keeping a healthy diet throughout your travel is an integral part of staying fit. How you look and feel is determined by your diet (among other things).

So if you want to prevent hardship and depression from trying to make up for the damage when you return home, please bear in mind the following points.

  • Avoid Overeating: Don’t continue stuffing food into your mouth when you know your stomach is full. Besides the excess calories that will likely turn into belly fat, you are going to upset your stomach. An upset stomach is even worse when you combine it with foreign environments encountered while traveling.
  • Choose whole, fresh food over-processed foods and snacks: I am not saying you shouldn’t eat a burger or an ice cream, but maybe not all the time. Eat whole foods most of the time and you will stay satiated and focused. It doesn’t have to be something fancy – mostly veggies, animal or plant protein and food with high fiber content.
  • Drink enough water: Fitness gurus and medical professionals have been whining for decades that we don’t drink enough water and it is still true! In terms of staying hydrated, it is much better to drink water throughout the whole day. However, while traveling you do also have to plan for toilet availability.
  • Don’t go crazy on the alcohol: Consuming alcohol in moderation is fine, but more often than traveling leads to “heavier” drinking. If you must, know that alcohol affects your hydration and sleep quality negatively making the next day harder. Moderating the drinking is also a good way to avoid a bulging waistline and a raging headache.

Learn How To Work Out Anywhere And Anytime

How to Keep Fit While Traveling
Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

Although it might be difficult to stick with a workout program during a vacation, it doesn’t have to completely derail your fitness regimen.

Studies show that exercise reduces depression and can increase your tolerance for pain, and if you can do it anywhere and anytime, you need not experience the “torture” of locating a gym or making your schedule work around gym opening hours.

Here are some simple tricks that could help you stay fit while traveling:

  • Learn bodyweight training, utilize it, and get comfortable with it.
    Bodyweight training is a very good alternative to lifting weights in the gym. Lifting weights might get you faster results, however, with creativity and practice bodyweight training can take you a long way. It will also increase your balance and body awareness.
  • Build strength over cardio.

In my opinion, building strength gives you the most bang for the buck. As a rule of thumb, the more resistance you work against your muscle, the less reps you need to do which in turn requires less time. This is important, especially if you don’t have the time to do many different exercises. Exercises you can do include:   push-ups variations, squats, planks, table rows, doorway curls, dips between two chairs, and if you can find a bar to hang from you can do pull-ups and chin-ups or even leg raises.

  • Explore more by walking, running, and hiking.

If your idea of a vacation doesn’t involve some workout, there are still other ways to stay fit. You only need to focus on moving around more and being active.

Jogging around the town, climbing hills, and taking hikes across mountains in your free time is a great way to keep fit.

Enjoy Yourself!

I have listed many things to do and things to avoid, but I also want to emphasize that you should refrain from limiting your travel experience out of fear from getting out of shape.

Does it sound like a contradiction?

Well, maybe instead of cutting things out completely you can instead moderate it, or figure out how to make it work.

Go sightseeing, be active, adapt to the climate, explore the hidden paths, nook and crannies of whatever town you find yourself in.

Spend enough time in the sunlight, have fun, attend carnivals or festivals. Get the best of the local tradition and culture while you are at it!

If you are not enjoying your travel, then what is the point?

Happy Travel: Then You Can Get Some Massage!

Traveling can be stressful and if you pair that with a lot of new exercises, you are going to get sore muscles.

One of my favorite ways to deal with that is a good massage. The price of a massage can vary a lot depending on where you go, but in most cases it is still going to be a costly matter.

That is why you should be interested in a handheld percussion massager. You know, those increasingly popular massage devices that look like a repurposed power tool.

They are very handy and you can easily bring them with you in your bag.

The massage itself is done by a very rapid “tapping” movement and it works really well! You can learn more about how percussion massagers work here.

Personally, I have tried using a lot of different percussion massagers both cheap and expensive including the widely known brand: Theragun.

I have reviewed and compared the different models including the two more affordable choices: Theragun Liv and Theragun G3.

These massagers are relatively expensive, which is why I have also put together a long list of Theragun alternatives that are cheaper.

Happy Travel: Conclusion

When it comes to staying fit while travelling, I think Roosevelt said it best:

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” – Theodore Roosevelt

He was also a traveler and explorer.

Avoid the excuses of why you can’t exercise or why your food options are limited, think instead of how you can make it work.

It doesn’t have to be glamorous or perfect like you see in some of those pictures and videos published by social media influencers (which are staged and photo edited by the way.)

And if your muscles get sore from exploring, hiking, and doing bodyweight exercises, then you should consider getting a massage!

About The Author

Marcus runs the site Strengthery where he likes to write about weight training and weight loss, and share his many mistakes so other people can learn from them.

He is also a massage junkie J.

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