Staying Active On Holiday
With my UK holiday just around the corner, it seems a perfect time to talk about ways to stay active and healthy when on vacation.
It’s easy to fall into ‘holiday mode’ when travelling abroad. After all, that’s the whole purpose of a vacation, right? We’re treating ourselves! But we all know that ‘treats’ can add up pretty fast, so you’ll want to make sure there are some options available to help you feel healthy, happy and full of energy so you can make the most of your break.
No matter what your budget hotel looks like, if there’s room to lie on the floor, there’s room for a workout! Take advantage of the free wifi and dial up a body-weight workout or yoga session on Youtube. I love HasFit, and of course Yoga With Adriene has a playlist especially for travel yoga! You could also pack one of those stretchy exercise bands to give you lots of extra workout options.
Hit The Pavement
If you’re a runner, you already know that running is free and all you need is your shoes (and possibly a map)! Do some research before your trip and see if there are parks or trails near your accommodation. Hotel reception may even be able to point you towards a good running track. Be careful though – when in a strange city, play safe: run during daylight hours and in well-populated areas. You can also see if there’s a ParkRun on where you are – these free weekly 5km events held in 20 different countries around the world are a great way to meet some locals, you can run or walk, and everyone is always happy to meet a “Parkrun tourist”. Just sign up (that’s free too) and print your barcode before you head off.
Walk It Out
I don’t know about you, but when I travel, I have a tendency to walk pretty much everywhere. It saves on bus fares and keeps my heart rate elevated! With GPS mapping on your phone, it’s unlikely you will get lost – and if you stop by the local tourist centre, there’s usually some self-guided walking tour maps to take you to popular spots. There’s even an app for that!
Find Your Hobby Locally
In the world of karate we always talk about the extended ‘karate family’ – and I believe this can apply to all sorts of activities. Whether it’s golf, tango or ultimate frisbee, there’s sure to be a local club where you can do a class or session. It’s a great way to meet people, too! I found a Lindy Hop club in one city I am visiting, and a karate club in another.
Eating on the Road
Before you leave, suss out things like grocery stores, farmer’s markets, wholefood stores and healthy-focussed eateries. Buying local fresh produce to snack on will benefit your budget as well as your waistline! Besides, if you have a plan of what you will be eating and when, you’re less likely to make food choices you might later regret.
Here’s some of my favourite travel food tricks!
Prepack oats: I’ll pack a couple of ziplock bags with rolled oats, dried fruit and nuts or seeds. With a small container in my luggage somewhere, I can easily make bircher muesli overnight in the hotel fridge. If you’re in the same hotel for a couple of nights, you may be able to add some yoghurt to the mix.
Snackpacks: I’ll have made up a couple of ziplock bags of trail mix for the flight. I’ll then buy some fresh trail mix locally and refill those baggies for daily use during the trip.
Simple Food: You’ll be eating out a lot, so consider hitting the supermarket instead of the café sometimes. A small tub of hummus and a couple of carrots makes an easy (and cheap!) light lunch – round it out with an apple or banana and you’re good to go! (Don’t forget to pack your travel cutlery set, though!)
BYO: depending on where you travel, local currency may not be on your side, so ease the budget pain by taking a few things with you. Make a trip to the grocery before you leave and grab some muesli bars or protein balls. You’ll save money by always having a healthy option in your daypack.
Enjoy Local! You are on holiday, so you are totally going to try local cuisine – do it, and don’t feel guilty!
I hope some of these tips are useful for you – I know I’ll be enjoying my trip a lot more with these tricks up my sleeve.