I love to travel – but I also love to work out, which can present a bit of a conundrum if I’m not staying in a hotel with a decent gym, with friends or family, or in a place with lousy running routes. And this was my problem on my most recent trip last week, a family vacation to Texas. The area itself was absolutely beautiful, but I learned a couple of lessons that I’m going to share anyway:
Come with a backup strength training plan. I called the hotel in advance to find out if it had dumbbells in the fitness center. “Oh, yes, we have dumbbells, we have state of the art fitness equipment,” the gentleman who answered said.
|“State of the Art”|
Luckily for me, SpeedyJ was on the case and sent me a couple of do-anywhere CrossFit-inspired workouts that relied on body weight. One incorporated running; I could do that on the treadmill, which was not stripped. There wasn’t much room in the fitness center to do anything other than in-place work, so this Women’s Health CrossFit-inspired circuit was perfect. (Although I was very tempted to head over to the CrossFit place down the street and do their beginner’s class. I resisted the temptation.)
|Good morning, y’all!|
Have a backup running plan. I had mapped out running routes, as I do before a trip. But as we were driving around, I realized I wasn’t going to be able to do my most-anticipated route because not only was it a busy street but there were no sidewalks. None. And it would take me over a bridge with lousy visibility. So that was scratched, and I whipped open Google Maps on my iPad to plot another couple easy routes. I still saw beautiful scenery on my run, and I got in about 10 miles or so that week.
If you run, double-check sunrise time. I have to get in my workouts first thing in the morning. I wrongly assumed that the sun would rise in Texas at the same time it does in Massachusetts. It rises an hour later, so I skipped running our first day there.
Pack and purchase healthy snacks.
I had a bunch of prepackaged raw almonds and goodies from Graze
in my luggage, as well as oatmeal packets in case the hotel breakfast was lacking healthy options (it kind of was – no whole wheat bread, and choices for me were limited to plain oatmeal, a banana or apple, hard boiled eggs, fruit cocktail, and yogurt. I would have loved a piece of whole wheat toast with peanut butter, but no such luck.) When we got to our hotel, I was delighted to find a refrigerator. I bought Greek yogurt and bananas as snacks.
Have fun! Travel is fun. Yes, air travel can be stressful: you have to go through TSA screening. You’re packed in a metal tube with a bunch of strangers and their germs. But there are fun things about it too: new places, watching your kids enjoy the plane ride (and bus ride, since we had to take shuttles to and from parking and to and from the rental car agency), doing cool stuff like museums and parks. Relaxing and enjoying yourself is just as important for staying healthy as working out and eating right. So try a crawfish, lay on the beach, and take a slow stroll through the botanic gardens.