Tuesday, 14 July 2015

How to: Stay healthy whilst travelling

Many people worry about how they are going to maintain their fitness whilst on the road. Being on the move can be a completely different lifestyle and culinary experience. Even if like me you've simply moved from one Western country to another, it is still a big change and can be a struggle.
Here are some tips I've learned from experience. Hopefully they will help you too.
Downward Dog, Sydney Botanical Garden
Downward Dog, Sydney Botanical Garden
Exercise
I always pack my running shoes. I find it really motivational to run in new places: city parks, beautiful beaches. Plus running is free and can be done whenever. Don't have running shoes? Yoga and other forms of cardio are free. Sure, pigeon pose in a 8 bed dorm may look funny but you'll be surprised how many travelers are into keeping fit so you might find yourself a new travel buddy.
There are countless workouts online to check out. You could even try a 30 day ab, plank or squat challenge. All require hardly any time and little space.



Most Western cities have 24hr gyms with one day passes or sometimes even a free week pass. These are perfect so take advantage. Sure you'll be busy taking in all the sites but an hour at the gym is not much to squeeze in plus you'll never regret a work out. Australian cities offer a whole host of free activities to join in with. Tai Chi is Melbourne, rock climbing in Brisbane. Google is your friend.



The most obvious one of all is walk! You'll see more and save money. I recently discovered that in the 15 minutes it takes to wait for my local train to go two stops down the road, I could have walked it in 20! I regret not getting a pedometer (tiny device that tracks how many steps you take) or downloading one of the many free pedometer apps on my phone. The miles I must have clocked up in America. Especially when I ended up walking an hour in the wrong direction.
Iceberg's Pool, Bondi Beach
Iceberg's Pool, Bondi Beach
If fitness wasn't your thing back home, perhaps make traveling your time to try new things. Not only for your health but to make friends and have fun. In Toronto I got to try hot yoga which I've been wanting to do for ages. I've even been swayed to try squash which was really fun and one of the first things I did when I moved in with new housemates was sign up to a 5k colour run. Not to mention paddle boarding in Byron Bay within an hour of a shark attack there... Oops. Try something unexpected. Surfing, glacier climbing, snorkeling etc. You might love it.



Food
The biggest problem I have is lack of routine. Traveling a lot over a short time frame can make it hard. Sometimes you don't always have a kitchen or you just plain don't want to cook. It's very easy to fall into the habit of binging on the free breakfasts at hotels and hostels of muffins and pancakes. Sure, have it once but maybe opt for the cereals and fruit the next day.

Finding healthy options is far from difficult it's just a matter of how lazy you are. Healthy, tasty food can be found in most places, sometimes you just need to change a thing or two. Like, do you really need that pastry or the extra sugar in your latte? You'll be saving empty calories plus you'll have more money in your pocket towards travel!!
Fresh Market Fruit & Veg
Fresh Market Fruit & Veg
Buying fresh food from local markets is a fun day out and provides you with grub for the rest of the day. The best fast food ever? Fruit. Fresh food is less likely to be laced with artificial ingredients. Passionfruit is great as their skin is hard enough to not get squished in your bag but soft enough for you to bite open to scoop out the insides.



IMPORTANT! If there are certain foods you want to try eg. New York cheesecake in New York, ice cream in Italy, macaroons in France etc, go for it!!! Being healthy is all about balance plus you're on holiday so enjoy it, just don't over indulge. Having pumpkin pie in America over Thanksgiving is a memory that will last a long time. Not just because of the pie but the people and situation etc. On the same note, the fresh custard apples in India were delicious and healthy.


Chai latte & pumpkin spice donut. What a treat! 
Just remember to have fun and enjoy your time. Keeping healthy doesn't need to be something you only do at home, you just need to use your imagination, set a little bit of time aside to keep fit and use your common sense when it comes to food.



What unusual exercises have you tried on holiday? What is your favourite food from another country?



Helen x

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6 comments:

  1. Some really great tips - the worst thing is getting sick when travelling

    Laura x

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    1. Oh yes. I've been ill in Egypt and India. Thank goodness for travel insurance.

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  2. I wish I could say I like to say healthy when travelling but, for me, when I'm on holiday that's the time to let myself loose! I love food and trying new cuisines is one of my favourite things to do :) Maybe I should take a leaf out of your book!

    x

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    1. Oh I agree. I love to try all the new delicacies. Yum. When I'm away for a long time like now though I try to be healthy :)

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  3. Oh me and staying healthy whilst travelling! A never ending story. For some reason I can't balance it well. I need my familiar kitchen scenario, having a fridge on my own and deciding for myself what I'll eat and what not. I don't really like it, but you've got some great points here. Walk instead of public transport (or run after the bus in London all the time!), or use stairs instead of escalators. Hope you're well in Australia!

    Caz | Style Lingua

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    1. Thank you. Having my own fridge would be great. My soya milk went walkabout the other day.

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