Fitness on Vacation – 5 Top Tips

 

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Having just packed my suitcase for a week in the sun – it dawned on me that I’ll be missing my usual classes and workouts….  I’m sure for most people this is perfectly acceptable and they look forward to doing nothing but relaxing, eating and drinking!

Sometimes it is good to let you mind and body rest and recuperate – but if you’re a gym junkie or class addict, the thought of missing even one session can give you palpitations, let alone missing a whole week of more….

However – don’t panic! There are plenty of options to help you stay active while away from home, whether in the UK or abroad – it just takes a little planning.

Here’s 5 tips to help you keep fit while on vacation:

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  1. Hotel/Local Gym

If you really can’t do without a gym, look for hotels that have one when you are booking and if they don’t – use Google maps to search for a local gym or fitness centre at your destination and contact them to confirm prices etc. If in the UK, sites like www.payasugym.com can provide a list of gyms/pools/classes, opening times and prices as well as reviews.

Bear in mind that they may not have a specific class or machine or the weights may not be as high as you would like so you may need to change your routine – increasing reps/sets is just as effective as increasing weight.

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  1. Body-Weight exercise

There are plenty of other ways to keep fit outside of the gym. A simple body-weight exercise routine can easily work-up a sweat and can be done in just a few minutes.  Try a quick HIIT session of squats, lunges, press-ups, crunches, plank rotations, door frame rows and on the spot sprints – 1 minute of each, 20 seconds rest in between. Repeat as many times as you like.

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  1. Portable Equipment

Resistance bands and Suspension Straps are a great way of being able to step up a hotel-room routine. Bands come in a variety of strengths that can be similar to lifting 2-10kg and Suspension straps will come with an attachment so that you can trap them into a door frame. Both weigh next to nothing and take up very little space in a suitcase.

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  1. Use your phone

If you struggle to think of a routine, there are hundreds of apps that you can download for your phone that can provide routines and exercises whether or not you have any equipment. A number of which are free to download such as VirtuaGym.

Another option is YouTube and there are thousands of videos of work-out routines again with or without equipment, but also videos of class styles like interval training, boxercise, aerobics and yoga….. the list is endless. Have a search before you go and favourite them for ease while you’re away.

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  1. The great outdoors

You may be lucky enough to have a hotel pool but rather than just sunbathing by it – actually use it and swim a few lengths for a great whole body workout, even better if you’re at the beach as the waves/current can provide greater resistance – just make sure you swim within designated areas!

Alternatively, going for a walk/run or jog is the easiest and cheapest form of exercise – have a run along the beach (sand is particularly challenging to run on), go exploring the local area (don’t forget to take a map!) or try a walking-tour rather than a tour bus.

Remember if you are working out in the sun to wear sunscreen and drink plenty of water.

 

Too many people take a holiday and resign themselves to the fact they will do very little, put on a few pounds and lose a level of fitness – but whether there is an available gym or not there is always something you can do to minimise the damage.

For me, I’ve chosen a hotel with a gym and pool, plus I’m taking a couple of resistance bands and have some body combat videos stored on my tablet – always good to have options!  😉

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7 Day Challenge – Dairy Free?

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My last 7 day challenge was to try and go diary free for the week. The main reason for this, is that dairy or more specifically lactose is a known trigger for Psoriasis and having had “P” for a number of years thought I should give it a go. I’ve had tried elimination diets before in relation to my Psoriasis but dairy was one factor that I hadn’t tried as I felt that I had very little dairy produce in my diet.

How wrong I was!  It turns out I actually have quite a lot – chocolate, milk on cereal and in my protein shakes, cheese in sandwiches/salads/pizza, yoghurts…….

Over the week I tried a few diary alternatives – Almond, Coconut and Rice milks and “Alpro” Cheese.

The milks weren’t too bad a switch although I thought they all tasted “sweet”. This was fine for my cereal and shakes but I wasn’t so keen using it in my coffee.

The cheese tasted fine and was ok grated on pasta but it’s texture was a little rubbery and not great on a home-made pizza – it’s just not the same as mozzarella!!

At the end of the week it seemed to have made very little difference to my Psoriasis – I did have a feeling that it wouldn’t as I know my trigger is usually stress…..  at some point I’ll write a post on my ups and downs with Psoriasis.

Switching to dairy free products was a relatively easy process as there are plenty more options I could have tried – but as the health benefits of switching (for me personally) are very little and they tend to be a little more expensive I don’t think it is a habit I want to continue.

The experience has also shown me that I really do miss my chocolate and at least I know for sure that it is not affecting my P.

Now to think about my next 7 day challenge……   😉