1. Pack for SuccessChances are you’ll have limited time to squeeze in workouts while on the road. However, this doesn’t stop all travelers from getting some much-needed exercise. According to an analysis of Business Travelers from Scarborough, individuals traveling for work are 78 percent more likely than the average U.S. adult to belong to a gym. Whether you’re traveling for work or play, it’s crucial to be prepared. Packing for success means bringing items that will be beneficial to your long-term wellness. First consider you attire. In addition to your day-to-day clothes, you’ll want to pack some comfortable, breathable workout wear. Opt for moisture-wicking clothing which tends to be lightweight and easily folded. Of course, you’ll also want to have a pair of supportive shoes and running socks to keep your feet dry and free from injuries. If you’re a female, a good quality, supportive sports bra is a must. Don’t be a cheapskate when it comes to your bra. A great sports bra minimizes movement, maintains comfort, and can help prevent irreversible damage that can lead to “sagging” breast tissue. Finding an open gym while on the road is not always easy. To ensure that you get enough exercise, bring along some essential tools. Lightweight, no-bulk equipment can be thrown into a duffle bag and stored in your trunk for easy access. Great options include:
- Jump Rope – Small, lightweight, packs easy, and provides an intense workout.
- Pedometer – Keep track of every step you make.
- Resistance Band – Compact and aids in stretching and toning.
- Yoga Mat – Start your morning off with a session of yoga.
- Therapy Balls – Fight off tightness and relieve stress.
- Laptop – To watch workout videos when your motivation starts to fizzle out.
2. Make Pit StopsPit stops are simply a part of travel. Bathroom break? Snack break? Need a few minutes to stretch your legs? Use these pit stops to your advantage by fitting in a quick workout. This is literally taking time to tend to your fitness on the road. Schedule some time for a quick workout at a rest stop, gas station, or park. Just a few short spurts of physical fitness throughout the day can help keep you in peak shape and your metabolism working at maximum speed. These effective no-equipment exercises take mere minutes to complete.
- Lunges – Lunges work the glutes, quads and hamstrings. Take one large step with one foot, bend your knee to a 90 degree angle, and hold. Repeat with the other leg.
- Jumping Jacks – Jumping jacks work the calves, hip adductors and hip abductors. While simple, jumping jacks can deliver an excellent cardio workout.
- Pull Ups – Pull ups work the biceps, lats, traps, deltoids, and rhomboids. Find a sturdy tree branch, grip it, and pull up.
- Calf Raises – Calf raises work out and tone the calves. To do them, stand on the edge of a ledge or curb and rise your heels.
- Shoulder Circles – Shoulder circles target the deltoids. This simple exercise consists of putting your arms straight out to your sides and making circle motions.
- Box Jumps – Box jumps work the hamstrings, calves, and quads. Find an elevated surface, such as a park bench, and jump up, then down again.
- Decline Push Ups – Decline pushups target the upper chest. To do this exercise, perform a pushup like usual, but rest your feet on an elevated surface.
- Jump Squats – Jump squats work the hamstrings, calves and quads. With your hands behind your head, complete a regular squat. When you reach the lowest point, jump upwards off the ground.
- Leg Raises – Leg Raises work the abdominals. Lay down and lift both legs off the ground simultaneously to create a 90 degree angle with your body.
3. Record Your WorkoutsNowadays, there’s an app for everything. Health and fitness apps can be found by the dozens, and while some are more useful than others, research shows the benefits of using an app to maintain wellness. In a study published by the Journal of Medical Internet Research, three quarters of participants who used fitness apps reported to being more active compared to past users and non-users. Interestingly, research also found that current users of fitness apps also had lower body mass indexes than past users and non-users. From fitness diaries to mobile personal trainers, using the right app can help you reach your goals faster and keep you on track when on the road. Here’s our top app choices: Fitbit One of the most popular fitness apps today is Fitbit, available on Android, iOS, Windows Phone, and the web. While the app can be used in combination with an activity tracker, one isn’t necessarily needed to use the app. Fitbit allows you to track calories, log your weight, count your steps, and retain other health information. The Johnson & Johnson Official 7 Minute Workout Available for free on Android and iOS, The Johnson & Johnson Official 7 Minute Workout is the perfect exercise routine during hotel stays. All you need is seven minutes and a chair to get a medium-intensity workout consisting of moves like jumping jacks, crunches, planks, pushups, and high-knee running in place. Lose It! Lost It! offers a combination of innovative fitness and nutrition tools, coupled with a supportive network of like-minded folks looking to lose weight. Use the app to count calories, log exercises, and get advice from people who are also shedding unwanted pounds. The app is available on Android, iOS, Nook, Kindle, and the web. WalkJogRun GPS Running Routes WalkJogRun helps runners find or create running routes in any city of the world, along with tools to help them train effectively. When traveling, it can be hard to determine where a decent and safe route is to workout. This GPS running app has logged more than 207,000 miles of running routes. WalkJogRun requires iOS 6.0 or later. Endomondo This free app acts like an electronic coach, giving users feedback in real-time during exercise. Endomondo keeps an accurate record of your fitness history and manually logged workouts. Users also have access to user-made walking, running, and biking routes which can be extremely useful when traveling to new cities.
4. Invest in WellnessStaying healthy and fit while on the road has never been easier than with the help of fitness-friendly hotel chains. In 2012, 84 percent of hotels offered an exercise, health, or fitness facility on-site. Hotels know it can be tough to stay focused on fitness when traveling. That’s where hotel fitness programs come into play. More than just a few exercise machines in the basement of the hotel, these fitness programs consist of yoga classes, personal trainers, health-conscious meals prepared by top-quality chefs, and sometimes even exercise equipment in the guest rooms. If you’re having trouble staying motivated to work out while on the road, it may be wise to invest in a hotel fitness program. Of course, these programs vary from hotel to hotel so do your research behind handing over the dough.