It’s tough enough to find the time to sneak in a workout at home, even more so when you’re traveling and cramped up in a tiny tourist lodge in Thailand or Botswana. What’s worse? If you love backpacking, you know how sometimes the picturesque places you go to don’t always have a gym nearby.
So how can you stay fit and on track during your travels? Well, Harry Stangard, a former Ivy League football coach and health and wellness consultant, says you first have to overcome your biggest enemy – laziness.
“Travelling gets you in a relaxed state, as it should. But unfortunately, this also puts your workout motivation to sleep mode,” he said. “Motivation really is a biggest factor.”
But what type of exercise should you do? You can’t really bring a kettle bell in your bag and fly halfway the world, can you?
The coach says, you can, but it won’t really be practical.
“For me, the most practical thing to bring is a resistance band. Or a jumping rope,” he said. “When you travel, it doesn’t really matter that much, as long as you’re challenging yourself and your body’s limits.”
He added, “Resistance bands are quite versatile – it can help you with cardio, it can target major muscles and it can support muscle building.”
As for cramped hotel rooms? No problem.
“There’s always somewhere you can work out,” he said. “Maybe your hotel has a basketball court, or a tiny garden? There’s so much you can do in 15 minutes, rather than staring blankly at your hotel room walls, waiting for the tour bus or Uber. The point is, find out the routine that works best for you during that vacation.”
Of course, travelling entails a lot of food-ventures. So does keeping yourself fit mean you can’t eat those local food you’ve been curious about for months?
“Of course not,” Stangard said. “You can eat anything you want. But my best advice is, start your day with cardio and a little bit weight-lifting. It can be actual weight-lifting equipment or just use you body weight. After that, you can have foodgasm after foodgasm all day long.”