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A surprising number of us gain weight when we’re on vacation, though our goal is to lose weight. That’s why we’ve put together this guide on how to stay healthy and fit on your next vacation.
Choose an Active Vacation
It is hard to stay active if the primary activities at your vacation destination are floating in the pool, laying on the beach and sitting in a bus admiring the countryside. One solution is trying to walk everywhere, but this can be exhausting and you’re not familiar with the location. Another option is booking an active vacation through Vacayou. Whether you’re hiking in groups, swimming and parasailing or doing yoga, an active vacation will keep you moving. And it won’t seem like you’re cutting into your vacation to stay in shape the way it would if you skip the spa session to work out at the gym.
Pack a Go-To Exercise Routine
Consider packing basic exercise gear like workout bands or a yoga mat. This gives you a way to stay active even if the weather forces you to stay inside. And you can work out in your room if the gym is closed.
Mix Workouts with Activities
Tai chi in the town square. Yoga on the beach. Hiking to the top of a local mountain to see the sunset. Mix workouts with the activities on your to-do list. Then you won’t feel like you’re interrupting your vacation to get activity in. Research local classes you could join. Consider the casual dance class another cultural activity. Just make sure the activities match your ability level.
Walk Everywhere You Can
There are destinations that require taking transportation, such as when you’re flying or driving to the resort. However, you should commit to walking everywhere else you can. Go on a walking tour of the city rather than riding in a bus. Walk to the beach or local shopping venues instead of taking a cab. This will help you burn calories and give you motivation to keep going since you have a destination. If you’re tired, you can pay for a cab to take you and anything you bought back to the hotel.
Note that you could ride a bike in many parts of the world. In fact, many cities have public bicycles for free use, while your hotel could direct you to places where you could rent it for the day.
Track Your Progress
Whether or not you’re tracking how many miles you walk, start tracking your progress while you’re on vacation. Where did you visit? How many miles did you walk to get there? Did you climb a hill or go up to the top of a building? Record how many steps you climbed.
Maintain Your Schedule
Keep up your routine when you’re on vacation. Go to bed at the same time. Get up around the same time. Eat meals at your normal time, regardless of the local time. Go for walks or exercise at your normal time. This has a number of benefits. If you’re on your schedule, you’re less likely to over-eat because you’re constantly snacking. If you stick to your sleep schedule, you’re less prone to overeating because you’re tired or sleeping so late that you don’t get a workout in the morning like you normally do. If you plan on walking, stretching or exercising at your normal time, you’re almost certain to do so.
Drink Lots of Water
Plan on drinking lots of water. This can be more challenging than you are used to, since other countries don’t give you free water refills when you’re sitting down for a meal. You may also have trouble finding disposable water bottles. The better choice is to pack your own water bottle and then constantly look for ways to fill it up. Then you’re always hydrated, and you won’t spend as much money on alcohol or juice. Furthermore, staying hydrated reduces the odds that you eat when you’re really thirsty.
Eat Healthy, Delicious Food
When we go on vacation, it is expected that we’ll sample everything in the buffet or indulge in the fatty main course followed by a sugar-laden dessert. This is why they joke that people gain five pounds a week on cruises with 24-hour buffets. The solution is to plan on eating healthy, delicious foods. You could still combine this with the desire to indulge while on vacation. Go ahead and try the dessert made from exotic fruits instead of a more conventional one. Try healthy dishes that a step up from what you normally eat.
Be consistent with what you eat. If you’re normally eating 800 calories at a meal, keep that up. Don’t consume 1500 calories at dinner and then try to starve yourself the next day. If you normally don’t eat fatty cuts of meat, don’t try a large portion of ribeye today.
Hit Farmer’s Markets
A lot of vacationers choose to hit restaurants and entertainment venues. Make a deliberate effort to visit farmer’s markets. You will be able to sample a wide array of local fruits and vegetables; this is a much healthier choice than trying all the local pastries and gelatos offered by major tourist attractions. If you decide to find dinner at the farmer’s market, it is much more likely to be a healthy traditional recipe than the high fat, high calorie meals offered to tourists at high-end restaurants.
Keep Up Your Health Regimen
If you’re going on a trip, you probably plan on taking your prescription medications. You may be advised to take certain medications with you such as anti-malarial drugs and stomach relief. Are you taking probiotics? Pack those, as well.
Take your vitamins with you, too. This will help you maintain your normal routine and keep your body operating at its peak. And you won’t be tempted to load up on sugar or fat because you are left tired by a lack of iron. Consider taking vitamin C to keep your immune system strong. That’s especially worthwhile if you’re traveling on an airplane or staying in a hostel.
Book a Hotel Room with a Small Kitchen
Why is this related to healthy living? When you have access to a kitchen, it is easier to make healthy meals regardless of what is available from the hotel restaurant. You also won’t feel the need to order takeout when you’re hungry. You could even save money by buying groceries and then making meals.
Pack Healthy Snacks
Consider packing healthy snacks so that you always have one at hand when you need it. This could be single serve packages of nuts, a bag of trail mix in your bag, or a couple of apples and bananas in your backpack. This has the side benefit of ensuring that you don’t run out of energy on your way back to the hotel if you stay out too late. Eat the snacks, then return to the hotel and have a proper meal.
Have Healthy Ways to Destress
Have healthy ways to wind down from a long day, especially your first and last day of traveling. It is easy to binge eat on unhealthy food because you’re so stressed. Healthy ways to destress include reading a book you brought or listening to music stored on your device.