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On-the-Road Fitness: Staying Active While Traveling

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On-the-Road Fitness: Staying Active While Traveling

Getting the opportunity to relax and rest from a busy life is great. But it’s important to remember that too much rest—including skipping the gym—can affect your fitness goals. Not only can being on the road make you neglect your workouts, but you also may not eat as healthy as you normally do. While it is easy to go for the convenience of fast food on a road trip, it’s important to remember your body processes the food you consume the same way whether you’re on vacation or not. Aaron Feldman, MS, Professional Fitness Trainer at Cooper Fitness Center, explains “your body doesn’t know it’s going on a trip or vacation, and you shouldn’t separate on-the-road fitness with the regular fitness you should be doing every day.”

On-the-road fitness is a helpful routine to adopt when going on vacation but is also for those who travel for work. It’s important to make sure your body is always moving and avoid sitting in a sedentary position for extended periods of time. 

What does on-the-road fitness consist of?

On-the-road fitness shouldn’t look any different than it does when you exercise at home. The only thing that may change is the location and equipment you use. Feldman share’s locations that can help you maintain consistent workouts:

  • Hotel gyms
  • Gyms that offer day passes
  • Playgrounds

If you come across a time when you don’t have these types of places at your disposal, simply change your workout to include exercises and movements that don’t require any equipment. Feldman explains “you should be moving every day in some way, shape or form. It doesn’t have to be a grueling exercise routine when you travel, but you should incorporate movement and activity of some sort.” One of the easiest ways to stay active with no equipment is cardio exercise, as featured in the past Fitness Files article, “All You Need is You! Cardio Exercise without Equipment.” Learn more about cardio and other exercises you can adopt in our Fitness Files article archive.
 
Below are a few more exercises to help you stay active when you travel:

  • Band squats
  • Tube curls
  • Push-ups 

Joshua Cuellas, Professional Fitness Trainer at Cooper Fitness Center, highlights these exercises and tips in our on-the-road fitness exercise video. To browse more exercise videos, visit our Exercise Moves video library.

Equipment

While you don’t need equipment to exercise on-the-road, it can be simple to prepare for your trip with light equipment that can be an immense help. Feldman shares a few pieces of exercise equipment that are easy to pack and a terrific way to bring the gym with you everywhere you travel:

  • Jump ropes
  • TRX straps
  • Resistance bands

Going on long road trips can be tiring and cause aches and pains in your joints. To avoid discomfort, Feldman recommends taking a break from driving every one or two hours. During these breaks, you can take the opportunity to get up, walk around a little bit. The goal is to get some blood flowing throughout the body and mitigate the effects of sitting for long periods of time.

Resting and Recovery

Staying on track with your fitness goals is important, but vacations are opportunities to take a break. Try new activities and foods and enjoy the relaxation but remember to do everything in moderation and be ready to come back to your daily life feeling refreshed. 

While it’s important to stay moving and maintain your exercise routine when you travel, getting enough rest is just as important to allow your body to recover. “Most people don’t get enough sleep. So, ensuring you’re getting an adequate amount of sleep every day is important,” says Feldman. He goes on to tell us that consistency is the key. Be aware that when traveling, drastic changes with your sleep and activity patterns can occur. Plan ahead upon returning to your exercise routine at home because depending on the extent of those changes, your first workouts back may just be damage control.

For more information about professional fitness training at Cooper Fitness Center or to schedule a session with a trainer, visit cooperfitnesscenter.com or call 972.233.4832.