Maintaining healthy habits while traveling can be challenging. But it’s not impossible! Here are 4 tips for staying active and fit despite demanding travel and/or business meeting itineraries:
- You don’t need a fancy gym. Sure, your health club at home has more variety, but most hotels these days have fitness rooms with at least a few basic machines. Or, you can just exercise in your room by doing sets of jumping jacks, sit ups, push ups, etc. No weights, no problem! Body weight work outs are great for travelers without access to dumbbells, barbells, bench presses. Or bring along a couple of resistance bands. They are small, lightweight, and easy to pack. And if all else fails, there are plenty of videos online featuring hotel room workouts.
- Eat well. Traveling can be hard on the body, and eating on the road often means hundreds (sometimes thousands) of extra calories. But if you remain conscientious of your food choices, you can curb that pile on. Avoid big meals late at night, choose the salad (with lite dressing!) or grilled chicken at your business lunch, be wary of room service, and lock up the mini bar if you need to. Pack a few protein or granola bars or a bag of unsalted nuts–just so you have a few snacks on hand. Not only will eating well keep added pounds at bay, it will also give you the energy you need to stay alert during even the most grueling business meetings.
- Stay hydrated. It’s easy not to get the recommended 8 cups of water each day while traveling–soft drinks and/or alcohol are often much more readily available. But making an effort to drink more water will keep your body and mind alert, will aid digestion, boost metabolism, and flush toxins (not to mention the sodium with which restaurant food is loaded). Bring a water bottle with you everywhere and take note of how many times you fill it up each day. (Oh, and don’t forget to make sure that water bottle is empty when you go through airport security!)
- Try to limit stress. Time changes, jet lag, marathon business meetings, and foreign beds are just a few of the stresses business travelers have to deal with. But making an effort to get enough sleep will go a long way in reducing the effects of those stresses. Additional ways to limit travel stress are: take a quick walk during a break in meetings, run outside and get some fresh air (only if just for couple deep breaths), sight-see for an hour if there’s time, or take 15 minutes at the end of the day to read a book or magazine (for leisure). Even small measures will help relax and calm both the mind and body after a demanding day.
For more information about healthy traveling, particularly when it comes to your heart, read this article by Everyday Health.