Nothing is worse than coming back from vacation and seeing the scale tip over into the dark side. This coupled with the fact that you might have spent months trying to achieve that “beach body” or just be in good shape for a trip can be a little disheartening when you have to go back to the real world.
Once we are traveling it is very easy to fall off our diet, consume too many calories and not get enough sleep. The following guide will help you to keep your waistline relatively in check while you experience the world. You don’t have to give up that tiramisu, but it definitely will help to have a little discipline.
Eat and Drink Sensibly
Common sense should apply here. Believe it or not, what is unhealthy for you at home is unhealthy for you abroad. However, many people seem to forget about this as soon as they leave for the airport.
There are a lot of great tips to make sure you eat the rights foods, but one of the best things you can do is think about two things: portion size and carbohydrates. As a basic rule, keep the carbs as low as possible and make sure to get enough greens. That doesn’t mean you have to skip the pasta in Italy, just balance it with some vegetables. And don’t forget to take your vitamins.
Vacation is usually a reason to drink a little (and sometimes to excess). The celebration does not need to stop, but make sure you stay hydrated. You don’t want to ruin your day of sightseeing with a hangover. A good guideline is to have one glass of water for every drink you consume.
Also remember that every drink contains calories and sugars (sugar equals hangover). So avoid mixing too much and stick to things like tonic and soda water and avoid fruit drinks or sodas. This along with a small meal and a little time before you go to bed will make all the difference between being fresh and being fried the next day.
Establish A Healthy Bedtime Routine
This can be one of the trickiest things while you are traveling. Many people can’t sleep in an unfamiliar bed or a new place. A few days of not getting any sleep and you will not just be sluggish, you might also want to go home.
Establishing a bedtime routine before you start your journey will help you to sleep better (Bonus, this will help you in your everyday life). A little ritual before you go to bed will help your body recognize that it is time to sleep. This is particularly helpful if you have traveled across several time zones.
Try to get away from the phone as it has been proven that the blue light of the screens disturbs our sleep patterns. Try some yoga or deep breathing mediation to help you calm down. Reading is also a great idea along with putting some lavender or other scent you enjoy on your pillow. Taking the time with these simple steps will provide you with what you need to wake up refreshed and ready for the journey.
Getting consistent exercise is one of the most difficult things to accomplish during a trip. If you are traveling between many places and have an erratic schedule, figuring out when to fit in a workout can be difficult. Just as it is with sleep, so too is it a good idea to have something of a routine with exercise.
Travel schedules tend to be rather erratic. One day you might have an all day tour of the city and the next, you’ll have nothing booked. The one thing you can always control is what time you wake up. In that vein, the best thing you can do is set aside a period of time for right after you wake up to do a little exercise. It is a great way to get the blood pumping and give you some energy for the day.
Depending on where you stay, you may or may not have access to a gym. For this reason, having a set workout routine you can do anywhere is helpful. Go old school – one of the best bodyweight exercises you can do are pushups. You do not need much space to do them and they are a great full body workout.
Try to set a goal of doing at least three sets of twenty each morning (even if you have to get on your knees to do the last few). Yoga is of course quite good, but make sure to get some cardio too so you can stave off the extra weight from dessert last night.
Finally, when you can, walk places. We underestimate the positive effects of walking. Try to build time into your schedule to walk short distances. This not only gives you a chance to see more of a place, but is also an easy way to burn some calories.
Stay in the Moment
The whole reason we travel is to escape from our everyday life. However, this not a reason to abandon all the good things you do to make your life healthy. To make the most of a trip, it is always a good idea to say yes to new opportunities. Is someone inviting you to a family dinner? Then say yes. A new friend wants to show you a museum. Say yes. Try new foods and do new things, but remember, when it comes to alcohol, sugar and fats to say yes in moderation. Your waistline will thank you later.