A guide to staying fit while travelling

Simple tips to avoid weight gain and stay fit during vacation

Travelling couple exploring city with map

It’s common to feel post-vacation blues when you are just back from a holiday. And what adds to that feeling of gloom is the awful realisation that you have gained a few kilos and will now have to work doubly hard to get back in shape. Well, you can avoid this double whammy by staying fit while enjoying the sights and sounds of a new place. A few easy suggestions:

1. Walking to explore

Remember to include your most comfortable walking shoes when packing for a holiday. Walking can be the best way to stay active on a vacation. Even before you start your adventure, stroll up and down the airline terminal. Why sit and wait for your flight? You will be doing plenty of that once you’re on the plane.

Walking is perhaps the best way to experience local life of the place you are visiting. Look out for restaurants that are close to your hotel and enjoy a cool evening walk towards your dinner destination. Strap on your shoe laces and go hiking. Forget gaining wait, you may return home having lost a few kilos.

2. The elevator is not your friend

Elevators take both you and your weight up. Unless you have a severe knee problem or are suffering from arthritis, avoid using the elevator. Whether it’s in your own hotel or a museum you are visiting, climb the stairs.

3. Pack healthy snacks

When packing food for a holiday, we tend to choose foods that are easy to carry and have a longer shelf life. But don't forget to consider their health quotient too. Carry whole grain crackers, dry fruits, energy bars and laddoos made out of dates and dry fruits. Carrying these healthy snacks diminishes your likelihood of binging on packaged junk food while travelling. Once you reach your destination, visit the local grocery and stack your bag with fruits and healthy local snacks. Eat more natural foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts; avoid or at least minimise your consumption of processed foods. Also check whether the hotel kitchen caters to requests like low-oil meals and green juices for breakfast.

4. Does your hotel have a gym?

If you are planning to stay at one location for a long time, make sure they have an in-house gym or a fitness centre nearby. If your hotel offers yoga or meditation classes, book a few sessions for yourself. It's a beautiful experience to practise yoga on a holiday—it keeps you energetic and upbeat throughout the day.

5. Be consistent

“Doing something is a whole lot better than doing nothing at all,” says athlete Scott Danberg. Let this be your motto while vacationing. If you regularly workout at the gym, go for a run or do suryanamaskars, continue the practice. If you usually eat light for breakfast, don’t stuff yourself just because the breakfast is complimentary. Decide to have just one treat everyday and not let yourself loose at every meal. Another good rule is to avoid eating two heavy meals in a row. If one meal is heavy, keep the next one very light.

6. Stay hydrated

You probably already know that alcohol adds a lot of calories. But it’s vacation time and you want to drink. All right, but balance it out by avoiding the extra calories in colas, coffees or fruits juices with sugar. Drink lots of water throughout the day. Also, don't order sodas or liquor to go with every meal. Moderation is the key.

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