Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Top Ten Healthy Traveling Tips
1. Do Your Research. Before you start packing your suitcase, check into the amenities of your hotel. Do they have a fitness center? Do they have a restaurant? Free continental breakfast? Know what you're going into. In my case, a lot of the time, I don't get to choose the hotel I stay in. If you are traveling for pleasure, choose a hotel that has the amenities that suit your healthy habits, whether that be proximity to running or biking trails, an adequate fitness center, vegetarian options on their room service menu, etc.
2. Bring snacks. A lot of the time, when you're traveling, you're busy and on the go. This is where the convenience food can completely sabotage you. Pack to-go snacks that you can just throw in your purse when you are heading out of the hotel. Lara bars, homemade granola bars, trail mix, apples, etc. This way, whenever the hunger pangs start and you are hours away from dinner, you already have something ready to eat in your purse that you don't have to pay $5.99 for an doesn't have 1,000 calories.
3. Remember to pack your sneakers. This one is important! I have done this in the past, remembered to pack my ipod, bike shorts, sport watch...pretty much everything except for my sneakers. Bring 2 dryer sheets to stuff into them and pack them into a plastic bag to keep them from stinking up the rest of your suitcase. This point is important also, especially if you tend to have stinky feet like me.
4. You can workout without a gym. Squats, lunges, and pushups don't require a gym. If you happen to be unlucky enough to stay in a hotel that doesn't have a fitness center in it, there are some things you can do that don't require the gym. A circuit style workout with squats, lunges, and pushups can be improvised and done in your hotel room. Any activity is better than no activity. Do 3 sets of 15 each, with a burst of cardio between each set (think running in place, jumping jacks, etc.) Simple and easy.
5. Bring an empty water bottle with you. This way, you can always have water with you if you're thirsty and it will keep a constant reminder that you need to be hydrating. Flying, warm climates, and stale hotel air dehydrate you so it's important to remember to drink, drink, drink. Depending on where you are going, this can also save you a lot of money since bottled water is expensive, especially in and around tourist attractions.
6. Don't worry if you don't workout everyday while you're away. You aren't going to lose fitness if you miss a few workouts. The ultimate goal is to get a quality workout in one out of three days. Chances are, if you are traveling for pleasure, you will be getting more exercise in than you would in a normal day at home due to siteseeing and doing vacation activities like swimming, hiking, etc. Skipping a few workouts is not going to turn you into a hepher.
7. Eat a good breakfast. If you are lucky enough to stay at a hotel that has a free breakfast (or are traveling for work and can expense it), breakfast is one of the easiest meals of the day to keep healthy. Start your day with oatmeal, cereal, tons of fresh fruit, peanut butter toast, scrambled eggs, etc. The healthy breakfast options at hotels are endless. Avoid the pastries and it's almost foolproof. Starting the day off with breakfast will keep you more likely to make healthy choices the rest of the day. Set the tone for the day if you will.
8. Don't look at the menu. If you are going out to eat at a sit down restaurant, don't even look at the menu. This way, you will not be tempted to order whatever mouthwatering calorie-laden concoctions the chef specializes in. Go with something in mind, like grilled chicken and veggies. Or splurge on a filet and roasted potatoes, which is still better than that alfredo that will call your name from the menu. A great meal is mostly about the company anyway, and you won't be tempted by something if you don't know they have it!
9. Don't eat everything. As self explanatory as this one may seem, it bears repeating. If you do by chance look at the menu and decide to go with that alfredo, don't finish it. Eat enough to satisfy your craving for it, but don't lick your plate clean. Some splurging on vacation is to be expected, just don't go overboard. Which also ties into the next point...
10. Don't be afraid to indulge. If you are dining at a fancy restaurant, and you want dessert. Get it. Life is all about pleasure, especially on vacation. Live it up!
What are your top healthy travel tips?