When you are on vacation one of the farthest things from your mind is staying in shape. For one thing, you are there to relax. For most of us, exercise is anything but relaxing. Add to that most hotel gyms are cramped places that ban kids. Who wants to take turns watching the kiddos as the other adult goes and gets sweaty alone? Talk about a waste of family bonding time! Plus, it’s hard to travel light if you want to pack a personal gym.
Here are three alternatives to keep you in shape when you are on vacation without sacrificing time with the family.
Tip 1: Use the pool. Travel destinations often have pools and other swimming opportunities. These can be in your hotel, in the town you’re visiting or even in the house you are renting. Plan ahead. Pack the swimwear. And make it fun. Thirty minutes playing in the water can burn upwards of two hundred calories. It can also be a great bonding time for you and the kids.
Tip 2: Get a ten-minute exercise app. These apps are fun, fast ways to burn those needed calories without interrupting the vacation vibe. Plus you can do them anywhere and with anyone, including the kids. Getting them in the habit of fitting in exercise is great. Remember, some of these apps work on WiFi. You might be in a situation, like on a plane, where you cannot access the internet. Make sure the app has an offline function and download any units ahead of time. Test this by putting your device in airplane mode. See which parts of the app work and which don’t.
My favorite exercise app by far has been 8fit. This app is customizable, has increasing levels, and the free option doesn’t limit the usability. Plus, you can get a year’s subscription for less than a month of a gym membership. Trust me, you’ll use this app more than you will use that gym membership. Especially with how easy it is to use while traveling. The exercises can be adapted to use in the airport, on a plane, in the hotel room, next to your Rent-A-Car, while you are waiting in line; the list is endless. Each workout is around 10 minutes or less. And they tell you how many calories you burned in such a short time. It’s a win-win!
*If it weirds you out to exercise in front of people, get your kids and spouse involved. Doing it in a group can help. People are less likely to judge a mom or dad playing a “game” with the kids than a loner doing knee raises off the back of a chair. The group becomes you not being the weirdo doing push-ups against the large glass windows in the plane waiting area, but a family of fun playing games. The ten-minute time limit keeps even the young ones engaged. Who knows? You might inspire other passengers to exercise with you.
Tip 3: On-plane exercise. There are so many ways to fill that time when you are on a plane. Catch up on those movies or TV shows you wanted to see all year. Play plane games with the kids. Read a book. My favorite, take a nap. But at some point, all that sitting is going to get to you. You will start to feel it in your legs and arms. Getting up to go to the restroom won’t be enough. Especially on those international flights that can last upwards of 6 to 20+ hours. You need an ace in your pocket.
*Download this inflight exercise routine from Qantas off of Youtube before your flight. Use it every two hours that you are awake on the plane HERE. Enjoy how relaxed you feel coming off the plane.
Even if you only use one of these tips, you will thank yourself at the end of the journey. There is something refreshing about knowing you didn’t put your health to the side on a long trip. Your body will thank you, too. You will be less tired from your travels and in better shape to get back to non-travel life.
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