For many of us, vacation time isn’t when we feel like sticking to grueling workouts. Good news is, you don’t have to!
However, I will argue that being on vacation doesn’t mean that it’s time to stop all movement! If you’re thinking “But, I don’t have access to a gym!”, you’re not seeing the big picture here.
Vacation is the perfect time to experiment with movement, have fun, and change gears while still remaining active!
(Sidenote: if you want to pursue grueling workouts, that’s totally fine… as long as you do realize that you’re not obligated to, and that it doesn’t take you away from enjoying your actual vacation!)
Here are six fun and easy ways to keep moving.
1) FOCUS ON PORTABLE WORKOUT EQUIPMENT
Resistance bands and jump rope take virtually no space in a suitcase, and open up a plethora of possibilities. While resistance bands may seem innocuous for the uninitiated, they can make any workout challenging, trust me!
(Check out my Glorious Glutes on the Go guide if you want a great lower-body workout using bodyweight and bands!)
One of my go-to ways to get some high intensity cardio work is doing a jump rope TABATA. In 4 short minutes, it’s guaranteed to get your heart pumping!
A true TABATA is a very strict interval protocol: 20 seconds of hard work followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated 8 times. I love using it with a jump rope, as it’s a fantastic low-tech way to take my breath away!
2) USE YOUR ENVIRONMENT
Is there a playground of any sort close to where you are, whether you’re doing a home staycation or visiting other locales? Taking advantage of that equipment can be one of the easiest—and most fun—choices you can make, when it comes to movement. With so many bars, rings, nets and steps of different heights, options abound.
Try this quick circuit for fun:
Push-Up (10 reps, use an incline if needed)
Inverted Row (10 reps, find a medium-height bar)
Sprint (200 meters, either on flat ground or up a hill)
Repeat for 5 rounds
3) EXPLORE ON FOOT
Whether you’re visiting a new city, or gallivanting about at the beach, or taking in fresh mountain air, there are always ways to explore your environment on foot.
You can hike, you can stroll, you can choose to climb to the top of monuments and sightseeing spots by using the stairs or the walking trail instead of selecting the driving route or the elevator.
Challenge yourself a little bit here: not only will it keep you moving in a healthy way, but it will also allow you to take a new perspective on your surroundings, and see things that you wouldn’t have seen the same way otherwise!
4) INCLUDE MINI-FLOWS IN YOUR DAY
Sometimes the day gets away from us, and we’re unable to move in the ways we had intended. Whether this happens during a travel day, or one of those days where your schedule is packed from sunrise to nightfall—and sometimes beyond—there’s actually a secret tool you can use: mini-flows!
All you need is five measly minutes to add some much needed movement to your day, and your body will thank you. You can try this one, or create one of your own. There are no rules, and it feels so good!
5) PLAN ACTIVE OUTINGS
Can vacation time be dedicated to lounging around? Of course it can. But I’d like to argue that the lounging will be made even more delicious if it comes after some adventures of the more physical sort.
(I’m not talking about that kind of physical adventures… or maybe I am too. Either way, let’s focus on sports for now, as I know I can leave the rest up to you!)
Get a group together to go climbing or ziplining, plan a day on the water, try canoeing or stand-up paddle-boarding, head to a local park with a couple of balls and a frisbee in tow. Possibilities range as far as your imagination goes!
Try something new, if you can. I’m always a big fan of doing this, as you not only get moving, but create lasting memories at the same time!
6) DON’T FORGET ABOUT RECOVERY
Ever come back from vacation feeling as tired as you did when you left?
It’s certainly happened to me in the past! While vacation can often feel like permission to throw caution to the wind, stay up later and enjoy more adult beverages than we do on a daily basis, we still have to make smart choices.
Making sure that we still get restorative sleep, staying hydrated and unplugging from the constant hassle of email and other electronic hassles will go a long way towards helping us come back refreshed!