Experts will tell you creating an exercise habit is a central pillar for getting and staying fit. Traveling for work or vacation can sometimes upend your daily schedule, so sticking to your usual fitness routine can be challenging during these times. But, when you take a mindful approach to exercise, you can discover fitness activities anywhere you go that will reward your body’s craving for physical activity. Here are some ideas for staying active when you travel.
Leverage your layovers
We can all agree, sprinting through the airport to catch a plane can be nerve-wracking. But long layovers between flights can also be an opportunity for a brisk walk along the airport concourse. You’ll add even more mileage if you forgo moving walkways and terminal-connecting trains. By wearing an activity wrist band (such as a Fitbit or other device) or downloading a pedometer app on your smartphone you can even track your total steps.
Several major cities including San Francisco, Chicago, and Salt Lake actively encourage airport fitness by providing walking maps and self-guided tours. Philadelphia has exercise bikes in certain terminals for passengers looking for a quick “ride” before their flight. Other locations have on-site fitness clubs and yoga studios where you can squeeze in a workout between flights.
Stay strong anywhere
The most convenient weights to workout with are not hard to find. Bodyweight exercises can strengthen muscles using the force of your own weight. These exercises require little space and minimal equipment. This makes them a perfect solution for exercising in a small hotel room. All you need is a sturdy chair and a mat, towel, or carpet to cushion you from the hard floor. MindFirst Members have access to a great selection of body resistance exercise videos, like this five-minute bodyweight resistance routine, which can be accessed from your phone or computer.
Explore hotel facilities
Many hotels offer basic fitness rooms with aerobic machines for their guests. Some even have swimming pools, which can offer an enjoyable alternative to cardio equipment. If you’re looking for a gym with other amenities such as exercise classes, the hotel staff may be able to direct you to a health club in the area that offers visitor passes. Some chains such as the Westin will let you rent athletic clothes and shoes for about $5.00 a day. They will even throw in a new pair of socks for free. You can also ask your hotel concierge to recommend safe nearby outdoor running, walking, or biking routes. If you have a little more time or are traveling for fun, you may also be able to arrange kayaking, zip lining, city walking tours or other outdoor events.
So let’s recap
Making exercise a habit is an excellent way to incorporate fitness into your life. But when traveling disrupts your daily schedule, it may take some extra planning and creativity to get the physical activity your body craves. Staying focused on the rewarding feeling you get when you exercise can help you seize fitness opportunities even in unfamiliar surroundings.