We all know the feeling... You and your family are going on vacation next week. You're excited for a break from work and to spend time with family but you're worried about losing the progress you’ve made in the gym.
But vacation doesn't have to have a negative impact on your health. Instead, the next time you head out of town, think of it as an opportunity to improve your health and fitness. I believe that with a little strategy and the right attitude you can go on vacation, have fun, and maintain (if not improve) your fitness.
So here’s some advice on how to make travelling healthy.
The most important piece of advice is to admit a couple of truths: you will be eating out a lot and you will be drinking a lot. With that said, how do we cut our losses and make the best of it?
When Eating Out…
Stick to meat and vegetables. Menu modifications can be made. Opt to swap veggies or a side salad instead of a starch.
Don’t waste calories on dessert after dinner. Your wallet and stomach will thank you. (This also makes room for that inevitable ice cream stop you’ll have along the way).
OK, we know you’re going to put several back this weekend, so what kind of drinks mitigate the damage? Here are a few considerations for your next round:
Rule #1: Liquor > Light Beer > Wine > Beer
When it comes to calories, the general rule of thumb is as follows simple hard liquor drinks generally have around 100 calories, light beer is close behind with 105-110 calories, wine contains around 125 (red or white), and most beer comes in at about 150.
Rule #2: Beware OF Mixed Drinks (Club and Lime Go A Long Way)
If you are a hard liquor fan like myself, watch out for fattening, ultra-sweet, mixers. My go-to mixed drink is vodka/tequila + club soda + lime (always chose club > tonic, tonic contains 125 cal and over 30g of sugar!).
Marriott doesn’t have a squat rack. So what are you to do?
Have A Plan
Before you start your trip, think about how many times you’d like to workout while away (ideally keeping it around the same # of times you would sweat in a normal, non-vacation week). Then figure out the times you could make that happen (early in the morning, after lunch, etc.). Once the workouts are planned out, treat them like appointments. And if you don’t have 30 min each day free on vacation, I think you missed the point of vacation! ;)
As for the workouts themselves, lack of equipment and lack of creativity are not valid excuses.
And if you are fortunate enough to have access to some weights (dumbbells, perhaps?) try adding them into your routine. Most of the benchmark workouts can easily be modified based on the equipment you have.
Take “Diane” for example. No barbells? No problem. Grab a couple heavy dumbbells for your deadlift. Then grab some light ones for your seated dumbbell press.
Consider Dropping In
Also, consider researching gyms in the area you can drop-in at. Ask your primary coach or friends at Trebel if they recommend any gyms close by to where you're staying. Chances are you'll get a great lead.
In summary, vacation doesn’t have to be a set-back. Focus on the positive choices you can make instead of worrying about the inevitable negative ones ahead. In terms of nutrition, stick to meat and vegetables,cut out soda and sweetened mixers, and avoid dessert when possible. As for working out, set aside a few days where fitness is a priority, then pick one of the countless no-equipment-necessary workouts and have at it.
Group Class Programming for Monday, June 12th, 2017:
3. Mobility: Couch Stretch - 2 min. each side