Most people see the gym/working out as a means to improve their appearance; and the end goal is usually to take your kit off when you finally go travelling and show off what you’ve achieved. And that’s okay. For most people taking a holiday or going travelling is all about relaxation, chilling out, and taking some time off. (Including the gym)
For the most part rest is good, its good for us physically, mentally and has a whole array of benefits. But for those on particularly long vacations, or people (like me) that aren’t quite satisfied with a lengthy break from exercise, there are a few options available:
Find a local Gym
To most people taking a trip to the gym and spending over an hour of their time can seem as a bit of a waste. Especially when you’re travelling. You have places to go, things to see, and you may just want to chill. Which is completely understandable. In addition foreign gyms can be daunting, not knowing any familiar faces, the layout, the equipment, and sticking out like a sore thumb. Whatever your reason, if going the gym abroad (or wherever you may be) isn’t what you’re looking for, there are still plenty of options. (read on)
For those hard-core “I can’t go without the gym for a week” kind of people going the local gym wherever you are on your travels can be a simple solution. Most hotels have a gym available to all their guests. Make the most of it! If where you’re staying simply doesn’t provide a gym this can be a good thing. Not having access to a gym can give you an opportunity to explore other means of fitness.(Just scroll down)
Not your cup of tea? If you’re crying out for a gym then a local gym in the nearby village, town, city or wherever is may be is the next best solution. In addition to providing the facilities you require, this can be a chance to experience other cultures, engage with new people (with similar interests) and see how heavy you can lift compared to the foreigners.
Probably the option most people refer to without even realising is swimming. 90% of the time when you go on holiday you have access to a pool. Whether that’s provided by the hotel, a private villa or a local baths.
The chances are you jump in the pool to cool off through the day anyway. Why not capitalise on this by throwing a couple of lengths in there. Swimming is an excellent compound exercise, (both front crawl and breast stroke) engaging a lot of muscles at one time, in return providing a full body workout.
Although it may not be what you’re accustomed too, it will defiantly top up your fitness. Swimming lengths too boring? Checkout this swimming workout for a few ideas on how to switch it up.
Body weight exercises such as Push-ups, Squats, Pull-Ups and Burpees, can all be done without any equipment. (with the exception of a bar) There are plenty of body weight exercises for all abilities, and depending on what equipment you have available. Stuck for ideas? Here’s a hand full:
- Push-ups (Different variations)
- The plank
- Mountain climbers
- The plank
- Bicycle crunches
- Reverse crunches
- Leg raises
- Russian twists
Now you have a list of exercises, simply throw the ones together you fancy to form a bit of a workout. These are more than enough to maintain your physique throughout your travels.
If you’re stuck for equipment such as Pull-Up bars or bars for dips, then many beaches now feature a small calisthenics set up. This is perfect for squeezing in a quick workout whilst still getting a tan. You can even jump in the sea to cool off afterwards!
It’s a given that you don’t want to waste any time when you’re on vacation. Especially if the heat is overwhelming, the thought of a long workout can be daunting. The solution? HIIT workouts (High Intensity Interval Training) are ideal for those who want a great workout in a short amount of time.
With HIIT you’re only looking at 20-30 minutes for an intense, fat burning, muscle-building workout. This can be done in your hotel room before breakfast, by the pool, on the beach, or wherever. The best bit is that you don’t need any equipment whatsoever. If you’re not familiar with HIIT check out this post for an insight, and 5 different workouts varied in difficulty: ‘5 HIIT Workout To Get You Into Shape’.
In conclusion rest is very important, and if you choose to take your enjoy your travelling away from the gym it won’t do you any harm. However if you can’t stay still and you’re itching to workout there are plenty of options. If the gym seems all to familiar, then swimming, a combination of calisthenics exercises, and/or HIIT workout(s) can provide exactly what you’re looking for.