You have been working hard for that bikini body- so why throw away all of your hard work once you hit the beach? I know that when you are on vacation or travelling, the last thing that you may be motivated to do is to workout. However, there are ways to stay active and fit without even noticing that you are doing it- all while exploring the country that you are in.
Are you like me and love to travel for the food? I also include tips on how to indulge in the local cuisine without putting on the pounds. The following is not professional advice- just based on my own experience finding a balance between health and pleasure while travelling around the globe.
1. COMMIT TO 15 MORNING MINUTES
Chances are you are not going to hit the gym up or want to go for a run after a long day of exploring- but you can easily wake up 15 minutes early in the morning for a quick workout before you head out. There is no need to do an intense workout- you are trying to stay in shape not get in shape.
Youtube has a lot of great short workouts that require no equipment and very little space. Just put a workout video on your phone and after just 15 minutes you will be feeling more sexy and confident- and will be ready to strut around in your bikini.
2. EAT FRUIT FOR BREAKFAST
When travelling there is no doubt that you want to indulge in all of the delicious local cuisine- this is often the best part about travelling.
Often eating out while travelling can cause us to make some unhealthy choices. Now I like to indulge just as much as the next person- so I make sure that I at least start my day right. I do this by filling up on fruit for breakfast. This way I know that I am guaranteed to get at least one healthy meal in during my day.
The great part is that no matter what country you are in there is usually always fruit available at a market or roadside stand.You will be surprised how many types of fruit there are that you have never even seen before!
Bonus- you will also save money on your trip if you buy fruit from a market instead of going to a restaurant for breakfast.
3. GO EASY ON THE COCKTAILS
I know that you are on vacation and you want to indulge in all the juicy cocktails that you can get your hands on. By no means would I ever keep anyone away from a mai tai but try to save the cocktails as a treat instead of your go to drink.
Between cocktails try a vodka, soda water with a splash of cranberry. This drink will keep your buzz going but has very little sugar and gets some much-needed water into your body.
4. ACTIVELY EXPLORE
While visiting a new country get off the tour bus and use your body to explore. There are plenty of ways to actively explore new places such as going for a hike, jungle trekking, snorkeling, and scuba diving.
You will find that by really indulging in the environment around you, you will have a way more rewarding experience. A great example is the time that I went for a bike ride in Sri Lanka and it turned into one of my most memorable days there.
5. STICK TO H20 OR COCONUTS!
When travelling you will probably be doing a lot more drinking and visiting of coffee shops than usual. It is fine to indulge and have a good time but during the day make sure to re-hydrate by drinking enough water. Always carry a water bottle around with you as you go sight-seeing.
When eating out also try to only order water-this miracle substance keeps you hydrated with zero calories. Stay away from fruit juices and sodas because they add an unnecessary amount of sugar and calories to your diet.
The one exception to this rule is natural coconut water. Coconut water has natural electrolytes and helps keep you even more hydrated than water! This miracle substance also helps kill off parasites.
6. SNACK WISELY
While on the road or on a long bus trip you are often forced to have to fill up on snacks to last you until you arrive and can sit down for a proper meal. As tempting as those cookies and chips look try to opt for a healthier option- such as nuts and fruit.
This way, if you are anything like me and like eat out of boredom, you won’t feel as disgusting if you snack on dried fruit for a six hour bus trip compared to snacking on chocolate bars.
7. PARTICIPATE IN FUN CLASSES!
Learn about the culture while getting fit at the same time. Most countries have a sport or activity that is unique to their culture and so offer classes for visitors to try. For example, in Thailand you can take Thai boxing classes or in Korea you can learn Taekwondo.
If your vacation is on the beach you still have no excuse. Most beach destinations offer activities such as surfing, yoga and SUP. Or you can go all out and enjoy SUP and yoga together like you see me doing below!
8. USE YOUR BODY TO GET AROUND
Once you arrive at your destination- strap on some good walking shoes or hop on a bike.
Exploring a new city with your own body is the best way possible. Not only are walking and biking good a great form of exercise (which can be hard to get when travelling) but they also allow you to meander down interesting, little side streets off the beaten path. By exploring this way, you will often discover things that you would otherwise miss from sitting in the back seat of a taxi or tuk-tuk.
Many tourist destinations also offer free walking tours so make sure to check if those are available. You are often able to rent bikes from hostels, bike stands and nowadays even some cities offer public bike rentals.
9. INDULGE IN HEALTHY TREATS
I believe that life should be one big treat. However, realize that treating yourself doesn’t have to mean eating a chocolate sundae filled with unhealthy amounts of sugar and fat. Focus on treating your taste buds as well as your body.
I remember travelling Thailand and the fruit was so juicy that it tasted like candy- but was healthy for me! In Belize I fell in love with the watermelon juice and would treat myself to a glass of it every day on my vacation. Remember that you can treat yourself and still eat healthy.
10. HAVE AN ACTIVE TRAVEL PARTNER
This is important because while you are trying to eat clean and stay active you want someone who also does the same. If you are eating fruit for breakfast but your friend wants to go out for pancakes, it is going to be really hard to resist the temptation. As well, you want someone who can participate in all of the active and fun outdoor adventures with you such as hiking and snorkeling.
Use this advice as a guide but don’t be afraid to over-indulge every now and again- you only live once!
Words and pictures by Tessa Elliott.