Staying Fit on Vacation: Four Tips and Tricks

This spring and summer will be filled with a lot of traveling for me, namely Mexico, New Orleans, and Europe, woo! I’m super blessed and grateful to be able to run around the world and explore, but I also know that I need to make an effort to maintain my fitness and keep sight of my goals while I’m away from my normal routine. This past two weeks Bruce and I were in Mexico (less exploring, more laying on the beach and relaxing) and while I didn’t maintain my home schedule with my nutrition and fitness at 100%, I did prepare for the trip and made use of some tools to keep me on track while still enjoying the tropics! Below are my top four tips and tricks for staying fit on vacation!

Come Prepared: You know what they always say, fail to plan and plan to fail! You don’t have to have every single workout mapped out and ready to go, and you don’t need to pinpoint every single potential nutrition mishap that might occur, but you can easily show up to your vacation with a few simple (and easily packable) items to make your workouts easier!

First, you have to actually HAVE the workouts to do! I’m always a fan of Pinterest for finding easy, no equipment needed workouts that I can do anywhere! Also, bring a pair of running shoes and you have a free, literally NO equipment needed workout!

Next, you need to make sure you have the right clothes! I pack in a carry-on only so recycling my clothes throughout the trip is a must. I bring quick-drying fabrics that can be washed in the sink and hung out on the balcony to dry. I usually bring two pairs of workout pants (always the Lululemon Align!). Biggest tip? Don’t be a diva! It’s OK to not bring your matching separates… just stick to basic black (shows less sweat!) and two or three tanks and you’ll be fine!

Also, hydration is so important when you’re traveling. Whether it’s through a crowded airport, backpacking across Europe, or in a hot tropical setting, always drink lots of water, you’ll just feel better! I always bring my Swell bottle with me so that I can fill it up on the go and not have to pay an arm and a leg for H20, just always make sure it’s potable so you don’t get sick!!

Do it First Thing in the Morning: The beauty of vacation is that it’s full of relaxation as well as spur of the moment plans. When we were in Mexico we woke up one day and at lunch time randomly decided to drive about an hour south and see some cool ruins. While spontaneity on vacay is amazing (and something I think everyone should push for!) it can throw you off and keep you from getting in your workout if you don’t do it first thing in the morning. If you’ve planned to hit the pool and then do so a workout after lunch, it could be easy for the pool to turn into the beach, to turn into happy hour, to turn into a night of dancing… and that’s completely fine! But if you resolve to wake up in the morning and knock it out you’ll have your workout done and out of the way and it’ll also help set you up to make better nutritional choices throughout the day! Bruce loves to sleep in, it’s his jam, whereas I’m an early riser. I make the most of that time and workout before he even wakes up. The cool thing is, it’s vacation!! You don’t have to set your alarm for 5:00 AM, just wake up when you wake up, get moving and you’re all set!

Make it Fun!: Please please please don’t do a workout with you that you don’t enjoy! If you aren’t a fan of high intensity workouts, don’t do a HIIT workout on the beach. If you don’t like yoga, don’t bring a mat for no reason. Waking up and working out is hard enough as it is at home with your normal routine, but combine being in a beautiful setting on a relaxing vacation with a workout you hate, and it’s definitely not going to happen!! Remember, any movement is good movement! It’s OK to not be busting your butt every day, getting in a nice flow workout is so much better than skipping it entirely because you hate what you’re doing!

Nutrition: This has always been my struggle in my health and fitness journey. I LOVE to workout and get sweaty, but focusing on my nutrition is difficult and something I’m really pushing to improve on. While on vacation I try to embrace the local foods where I am and eat as healthy as possible. In Mexico there were so many amazing fish options, fresh veggies and incredible whole grains! My two biggest piece of advice for nutrition:

I really encourage you to break out of your comfort zone and not eat like an American while you’re abroad! Eat the fresh, local foods instead of a McDonald’s hamburger! You’ll find that foods prepared locally are often much healthier because they’re made from whole food ingredients grown in the region rather than from over processed junk! But also, don’t forget that it is vacation and it’s OK to enjoy things that you may not on your normal routine! If you’re in Italy, for the love of God please eat the pasta and pizza and do NOT feel bad about it!

So there you have it! The four biggest tips and tricks I have for maintaining your progress and continuing to push towards your goals while also enjoying the beauty and adventure of travel! Next stop for us will be Europe (namely France and Spain) in August and I can’t wait to continue to put these tips into practice!! What are your favorite things about travel and how do you stay healthy abroad?