We try to watch what we eat and be healthy. We have our routines and meals reasonably planned out. When we travel, the routines and diets we are accustom to can be completely derailed.
Here are a few ideas to keep fitness in mind when you are on the road:
Do your research
Does your hotel have a gym, treadmill, walking path, nearby hiking trails etc. If you can, organize your trip and plan out what activities you are going to check out. Don’t set your expectations too high, be reasonable so you don’t feel like you let yourself down if you miss a few things on your list.
I have learned this lesson the hard way. You can have all the best intentions in the world but if you don’t have the right shoes to carry you around, you won’t be very active. I am all about cute shoes but make sure your shoes can log a few miles a day so you don’t end up covering them in bandages instead.
Take the stairs
Whenever you can, take the stairs. At the airport, in the hotel, at the conference center, at the tall building next to your hotel etc.
Get in a workout/walk each day
Can’t fit in a full workout? Then start your morning with a walk. You will be surprised at how much a walk can wake you up more than a huge cup of coffee. Start your day on the right foot… literally.
Walk as much as you can
Whenever you can, walk to your destination. Not only will you save on taxi fares but you will burn a few extra calories along the way.
Try eating alone
It may seem odd but I have had good results when I eat a few meals alone when I travel. When you eat alone you can stick to what you should eat and it takes away a few distractions. In a group, I tend to splurge or split an appetizer and dessert that I didn’t even need.
One of the biggest offenders of overeating when you are traveling is letting yourself get too hungry. Pack some snacks before you go if you can. If you can’t pack food to bring with you, find a grocery store when you first arrive and grab some snacks to keep in your bag. Fruit and granola bars are great to have at an arms reach to curb your hunger.
Pick the healthiest option
If you find yourself eating out, try to pick the healthiest option that sounds good to you. Try picking what you want to eat before you even look at the menu and try to stick to it. Eating out is an obvious must when you travel but don’t let it completely derail your efforts.
One meal no carbs
On my most recent business trip, a friend admitted that he realized he had not eaten a vegetable at all that day. Food on the go can lack the nutritional value you crave, especially fruits and vegetables. Try to eat one meal that is all vegetables and protein. Foods high in carbohydrates are always easy to find, challenge yourself to leaving the carbs out for a few meals.
Get your zzzzzzs
No matter where your travels take you, your body needs its time to recoup and repair itself. Don’t cut out your sleep. If necessary, take a 45 minute nap. Sleep the night before means you and your physical body will be up for more activity the next day.
Drink lots of water
The benefits of water are countless. Water is necessary for your body to function properly. Being dehydrated is one of the biggest culprits for fatigue and getting sick when you travel. Water can also help you feel less hungry.
Bring hand sanitizer and/or wash your hands frequently
Your body takes a beating when you travel. You can easily get run down and make yourself more susceptible to getting sick. Not to mention the hundreds (or thousands) or people you will encounter. Give your body a hand and wash your hands and/or use hand sanitizer frequently.
No need to spoil your vacation or business trip by drowning in guilt upon your return. Make a few small adjustments to your travel routine and you can remain balanced and stay healthy while you are away.
Amanda O’Brien is originally from Peaks Island, Maine and currently works at Hall Web Services managing their inbound marketing team. She is a self proclaimed workaholic who tries to maintain a busy lifestyle. She is an amateur yogi and runner.