Monday, May 16, 2016

6 Tips for a Fit-cation

By no means are we globetrotters (that is my #lifegoal), but the Wood family does like to squeeze in a several "staycations" each year.  It certainly helps that we live in one of the world's most popular vacation destinations, so shooting over to the beach or down to Disney for a long weekend isn't too much of a hassle.  And of course, as huge football fans, my husband and I try to sneak away each season for a game or two.  So with that being said, I have learned a couple of tricks to staying relatively healthy while traveling and thought I'd take this opportunity to share what I have learned through the years.

1. Plan Ahead
When booking our vacations, we always try to make sure our resort has a fitness center, that way we can continue to get our lift on.  We also like to map out our runs so we can plan our workouts for the trip accordingly.  When staying with friends and family, I have gotten guest passes to local gyms as well as asked about great places to run (which of course is a fun way to explore).  If the kids are with us, my husband and I take turns getting our workouts in.  If we have childcare with us, AKA Grandma or Abuela, or if it's just the two of us on the trip, then we are fortunate enough to get to workout together.  This is great because we can keep each other accountable and if we're lucky enough, get to spend some quality time working out together.

So next time you're heading out for a vacation, be sure to check to see if your hotel has a place you can workout at, if not, see if there is a local gym that offers guest or daily passes.  Check out local run groups and ask around to see if there are some courses already mapped out in the area (many resorts and hotels will actually prov this information).  If you are traveling with friends and/or family, determine your workout schedule before hand and help hold each other to it!
Sneaking in a quick pre-beach pump at the resort gym!
2. Meal Prep
You will most likely not get to, nor want to, make and take all your meals while traveling, but thinking ahead about what your meals will look like while away will help keep you on track.  On our last trip, and many of the ones we take with the kids, we stay in a condo with a full size kitchen.  We stock the fridge and pantry with foods we typically eat throughout the week and weekend.  This way we have plenty of healthy food on hand and are able to stay on top of our nutrition.  Before eating out, we check the menus online to see if they offer foods that are within our dietary needs.

So if feasible, stock up on foods you're used to eating and try to stick with your typical meal plan. Be sure to have plenty of healthy snacks available for the car or plane and daily outings so you won't be tempted to waste calories and money on those overpriced and over-processed convenient store goodies.  Also, do your research on local restaurants to ensure you can make healthy choices while eating out.

Thanks to the fully equipped kitchen, I was able to enjoy my usual morning smoothie!
3. Stay Committed
Vacation is a great time to relax, recharge your batteries, spend some much needed time with your family and even let your hair down a bit.  But always keeping your goals and why they are so important to you in the back of your mind so that you can continue to make healthy choices while vacationing.  I have traveled during marathon training before and have even done a long run around a resort.  I have also done some rescheduling before leaving for trips to avoid doing long runs around resorts.  Either way, I got it done.  This most recent trip, I was fortunate enough to not have any training runs scheduled, so I was able to workout more for enjoyment than obligation.  However, I still feel like fitness and healthy living are a part of who I am, so I stay committed and made the time for it regardless.

So wherever you are in your training, recovery or maintenance, staying committed to your healthy lifestyle while on vacation is important for your body, mind and goals.  Getting in a good pump or run is a great way to start any day off, even on vacation!

Nothing better than some sunrise beach miles
4. Try Something New
Several years ago, I traveled to a friend's wedding and decided I would check out a gym near the hotel to get my workout in.  I was about to get rocking on my own workout when I noticed a group class was about to start.  I figured why not jump in and check it out, if anything it would take the guess work out of my workout on that busy morning.  It turned out to be this super awesome boot camp class that totally kicked my butt!  Since then, I always look for new and exciting fitness activities to do while I travel from trying a dance or yoga class to participating in a local 5k.

I'm a firm believing in stepping outside of your comfort zone and trying new things, and what better time to do it than while you're in a new and exciting place!?!  Check to see if the resort offers any type of fitness classes or if there are things going on nearby.  You never know, you may find a fun new way to challenge yourself!

5. Keep Moving
It's definitely nice to get to relax, and by all means take advantage of it while you can.  But a sure fire way to stay on top of your fitness while on vacation is to simply stay active.  Of course for me, with two young boys, I have no choice but to keep moving since I am constantly keeping up with them.  But other ways we like to stay active on vacation is by walking the city or going on hikes, renting bikes or paddle boards, kayaking, rock climbing, etc.  Again, do your research, find what fun activities your resort or destination have to offer that will get you off your butt and out exploring, all while burning some calories and making some great memories in the process!

6. Live A Little
Last but not least, you are on vacation after all, so enjoy yourself.  I typically like to follow the 80/20 principle where 80% of what I do is healthy then the other 20% is indulgence.  This past trip, though I made most of my meals, eat mostly clean and worked out every day, I still enjoyed cocktails, ice cream and pizza!  Definitely not things I would normally indulge in, but it was all delicious and totally worth it!  When you work hard and stay focused for so most of the time, it definitely fun to let your hair down every now and then.  I will say that after indulging, my body reminded me why I typically do not eat and drink like that and come Monday morning, I was more than ready to get right back on track.  But it was certainly nice to let go for a few days and live a little!


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