Let’s talk about the combination of travel and fitness. Travelling is amazing! Cheap beer, lazy days on the beach and so much delicious food. We all go on holiday and forgive ourselves the extra treats, we work hard all year but holiday is time to let our hair down! When you’re away for a week or two this isn’t a big deal, travelling, however, isn’t a holiday is it!? You get lazy you’re going to gain some extra pounds.
I’ve known Kiht Collective founder Danielle for years now, we lived together for the first two years of university. She’s always been into the gym and was a member of the netball team. I’d just turn up to the netball socials with her. All the fun less of the sweating. I spent my primary school years playing the role of Sporty Spice because I had long brown hair, but in reality, I was always (and still am) more suited to Ginger.
I left Manchester in September 2017 and set off on my own with my backpack. Aiming to travel across South East Asia and end up in Australia. I quit my job and hit the gym hard in the months leading up to September. Fitness isn’t something that comes naturally to me, I have to work for it!
Two months into my trip I was in my bikini heading to the beach and I caught myself in the mirror … OOPS! Too much fun, not enough looking after myself. Time to get back in shape! I’ve seen Instagram, they don’t let chubby English girls into Australia, I’ll be turned away and sent back!
Since then I’ve had a little word with myself and got back on track!
Here are some tips for keeping your fitness on track while holidaying, mini breaking or like me, travelling long term! Trust me, from experience it works!
What you’ll need to pack.
I know space is limited, especially backpacking, but you don’t need much!
Leggings / shorts
Walk, walk, walk! Everywhere! I only have the iPhone’s fitness monitor app to go off, but I’m walking way over my 10,000 steps per day. You’re in new and exciting places, so explore them! If you haven’t hit your steps at the end of the day go for a walk, you won’t regret it!
Put down the pancakes! Would you eat waffles and pancakes every morning back home? No! You don’t need to treat yourself every day on holiday – everything in moderation!
H2O! Keep hydrated, it’s recommended to drink a minimum of 2 litres of water a day at the best of times. I try and drink a minimum of 3 litres a day while I’m travelling, even more usually!
Take the stairs. Not the most pleasant option when it’s hot, but given a choice between a lift/escalator or the stairs, take the stairs. You’ll be out of breath for a while but you’ll recover.
Pack healthy snacks. I don’t generally snack while it’s hot, but when I have long bus rides or flights I’m guilty of boredom eating. Avoid the chocolate and crisps, look for bags of nuts, granola bars and my favourite while in Asia, seaweed strips!
Stretch. Speaking of the long bus rides and days spent flying, you probably won’t feel like doing much after a long journey but after being sat cramped up try and do some stretching when you reach your final destination. I’m no yogi – trust me – but I try and do at least a 10 minutes stretch after being cooped up. I use ‘Yoga with Adriene’ for inspiration!
These are just simple daily changes you can make which will gradually help you see a difference. If you want more of a fitness kick-start then how about a HIIT work out? You can do it anywhere, your hotel room, on the beach, by the pool! Who cares who sees, it can last as little as 20 minutes and will make you feel so much better. Not sure where to start, see below for some inspiration!
This is where that speaker comes in handy. Mine’s the UE Wonderboom and was a leaving present before I came away. It’s waterproof – you can literally put it in the pool and it’ll still play, trust me, I’ve tested it!
Now pair it with your phone and turn it up!
Pick your favourite song and dance around your bedroom, my warm-up of choice right now is Missy Elliot – Get Your Freak On!
Set the Timer:
You can get so many apps for this, I use ‘Interval Timer’ – catchy name! It’s free so no excuses.
Beginner: 30 seconds high intensity, 30 seconds rest
Advanced: 45 seconds high intensity, 30 seconds rest
You’re aiming for 5 rounds – it doesn’t matter if you can’t last that long though, do what you can. You’ll soon see your fitness picking up!
If you want to mix it up there are so many more things you can add in, press ups, walking lunges, step ups, sit ups, tricep dips – anything to get your heart racing!
It’s so important to stretch after a workout, stops the DOMS kicking in the next day. My favourite warm down songs while I’m travelling are Alina Baraz & Galimatias – Fantasy and Klingande – Jubel.
Hope this helps and inspires you to keep up your fitness regime while away from home!
By Travel Blogger and self confessed beach bum - Helen Renners
Make sure you check out her blog to keep up to date with her incredible journey