Spring is sneaking up on us and summer will follow just as quickly. Many of us are planning our vacation time. But what do we do about our exercise routines during that time? Do we abandon them even as we’re beginning to make real strides? What about our resolutions and goals this year?
The good news is you don’t have to let go of your fitness dreams while you vacation. You can have fun, relax, release stress, and still burn calories. The trick is to make sure you add some truly active activities to your days of sitting poolside with a good book or touring the beautiful countryside.
Don’t take a bus tour or spend your whole vacation seeing the sights from the inside of a taxi. Get out and enjoy the fresh air, explore, and get personal with your vacation. Many tourist cities offer walking tours, but you can also go without the guide. It’s a great way to meet new people, really get to know the area, have fun, and burn plenty of calories. If you are near a beach, take a few long strolls down the sand and surf. The sand makes you work harder while walking, but the views and relaxing sounds of the ocean are worth it. Plan a hike. Adding some ups and downs to your walking burns even more calories and you will have some amazing photographs to share when you get back. Don’t forget the shopping. Bargain hunting while on vacation can be a lot of work, and a lot of walking too.
Take advantage of the hotel pool. Even just a few laps or treading water for a few minutes will have you burning plenty of calories. Play a few games with the kids if you have them. If you are vacationing near the ocean, there’s amazing things to do and see that will be fun and fit. Snorkeling, surfing, and swimming in the ocean will keep your heart pumping and your muscles fired up.
Many hotels offer free bike rentals or know where you can get them for a low price. Explore your vacation spot from a bike seat. That way you get to see and experience more while getting the exercise in you want. You won’t even notice you’re working out.
Use the hotel gym each day. Even ten to fifteen minutes will let you eat the way you want while on vacation without the fear of slipping into old habits. If you have a gym membership, check and see if the city you’re in has your gym close by. Go play a game of racquetball or hit a treadmill for a few minutes before you get the other activities underway.
Don’t forget to stretch, especially when you’ve been sitting for long periods on planes or in rental cars. Stretching burns more calories than sitting alone and will keep your muscles active. You don’t want to be stiff and sore on vacation anyway.
There are a million exercises that require little to no equipment and can be done anywhere and almost anytime. Do a few in your hotel room before heading out to the pool, the beach, or other beautiful destination. A jump rope is an easy addition to your luggage and one of the best cardio exercises. Jumping jacks work too. Sit ups and pushups can be done on the hotel floor or even your bed. Calf raises, lunges, squats, and bicep curls are a few more you can do in the comfort and privacy of your room. You can also use your luggage to add weight to many of these exercises to make them more effective.
If you don’t want to worry about exercise for the week you’re on vacation, don’t sweat it. One week isn’t going to erode your progress and kill your routines. Sometimes a little rest and relaxation is in order so your body can heal and catch up. If your vacation runs longer than a week though, you really should try to get some exercise in.
Learn more about Charlie Pulsipher
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