Squeezing in a workout while you’re on vacation may feel like the last thing on your priority list — with or without kids. But vacations can be the best time to work-out: You don’t have work or housework taking up your time and you can focus on yourself. Here are some tips to make it more doable and up your travel fitness game.
I once had 24 hours in Tokyo and discovered that my hotel had a running concierge. He took me on a three-mile route which showed me some great city sights. We also stayed at a hotel this year in Mozambique that had a gym and studio for Pilates, fitness classes and even aerial yoga. It made those piña coladas taste even better knowing that I could work off those calories with the hotel’s fitness options.
We live in the age of convenience, which means you can leverage technology to focus on fitness while away from home. There are many mobile fitness apps readily available, but my favorite to reach for is top yoga teacher Tara Lee’s app, Elements of Yoga Video Collection – with Tara Lee. Her videos are divided into three 20-minute sequences which can be played in succession for a complete yoga practice or as individual sessions for those short on time.
I always travel with a Lululemon yoga mat because it’s so light. If I run out of space in my suitcase, I ask the hotel at check-in to send one to my room or I borrow a mat from the gym. Even if I can fit in 20 minutes in the morning or at night after the kids have gone to bed, it makes a noticeable difference. My husband always travels with a TRX System or resistance bands. Both are lightweight, take up minimal room and have multiple uses in your room, in a gym or even outside at the beach or a park. He shares great workouts and circuits when you find yourself with or without a gym — even workouts where you can incorporate your kids! Check out @markembley on Instagram for simple but effective workouts.
When I am home it seems that half the battle is actually getting to the gym. If you make it a habit to always park workout gear and running shoes when you travel, you never have an excuse not to break a sweat.
As we frequently remind our kids, life is about choices. When you travel you have the choice to eat healthy or to eat poorly. Don’t completely deprive yourself, but don’t over-indulge either. A chef I once worked with always says, “Everything in moderation, including moderation.” Traveling is a great way to introduce your kids to healthy habits.
Sometimes the challenge with traveling with kids is that you don’t have time to yourself or as a couple. This year during our family’s around-the-world trip, we hired a babysitter through the hotel – not just for date night, but for workouts too. If we couldn’t get a babysitter, we would take turns working out and watching the kids.
By Heather Mitchell Embley