Tips for Staying Fit While Traveling

Travelling is one of life’s great thrills. You immerse yourself in new sounds and smells, plunge yourself into exciting activities and social scenarios and see the world through a new cultural lens. But travelling can have its downsides, especially concerning health. First, there are the sedentary stretches – sitting on planes and trains for hours at a time or whiling the time away at a café. Next, there’s the rich foods and uptick in alcohol consumption that goes along with vacation. It all adds up.

If you want to stay fit while travelling, you’ll need an active mindset, a shrewdly packed bag and a few tips. Below, let’s explore how to help your health and enjoy your time abroad.

Pack Versatile Clothes that Let You Work up a Sweat

You can’t really justify packing an entire exercise outfit for a one- or two-week trip; those extra clothes take up too much space. Instead, pack versatile clothing that you can wear for a night on the town – or a jog around the block.

This is a key reason why men choose merino wool underwear, socks and tees when they travel. Merino wool is sweat-wicking, breathable and antimicrobial: a triple threat when it comes to exercise gear. And if you choose the right merino products, they don’t track as “sporty.” They simply look like sophisticated, minimalist garments.

Wherever Possible, Take the Hard Road

There are several opportunities for fitness right under your nose. The problem is that most people become accustomed to the easy road. If you’re looking to get your heart rate up, consider the following:

  • Taking the hotel stairs instead of the elevator
  • Walking to destinations instead of taking transit (or taking public transit to a nearby station)
  • Using your downtime to pack in an app-enabled workout in your hotel room
  • Taking your morning coffee to go, exploring your destination
  • Planning activities that involve hiking, biking or long walks

Even small gestures toward fitness will eventually add up.

Research Healthy Cuisine Options at Your Destination

Most world cuisines – even those typically heavy on oil and carbs – feature a subsection of fresh, light, and vibrant dishes. All you need to do is seek them out. It’s relatively simple: search “healthy food” on Google Maps for your destination, and you’ll find a list of restaurants specializing in lighter fare. You can even search Google Maps by dietary restriction.

Alternatively, consider eating a few meals from the supermarket that consist of fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins and healthy fats like nuts and avocado.

Shake off the Jet Lag and Slide into a Consistent Sleep Routine

Poor sleep can do a number on your fitness goals; when our bodies aren’t well rested, they tend to resist physical exertion. And travelling can throw you off your circadian rhythm, especially if you’re leaping over time zones.

The best thing you can do is try to quickly overcome jet lag with pre-planning and hydration. Before you leave, spend a day or two trying to “simulate” your destination’s time zone, even if it means napping in the middle of the day. Next, stay ultra-hydrated on the flight. A significant factor in jet lag is dehydration (airplane cabins are notoriously dry environments), which can exacerbate poor sleep.

Don’t let your new year’s resolutions slip because you’re in a new place. Stay active, pack versatile clothing, eat a few healthy meals and mind your sleep schedule.