Live Healthy, Travel Fit – A Guest Post by Mike Manning

We all know the importance of fitness for personal health. Unfortunately, those who travel frequently often find it difficult to maintain healthy fitness habits. The rigors of the road can take their toll on travelers who experience repeat changes in routine, irregular mealtimes and interruptions in regular sleep patterns due to unfamiliar surroundings. As a result, frequent travelers tend to be in much poorer health than those who stay closer to home.

However, you needn’t feel trapped in an unhealthy lifestyle if your job requires frequent travel. Simple planning and some basic awareness can help you change stressful trips into opportunities to maximize your personal health and fitness.

Before you leave, plan to make the most of fitness opportunities on your trip. Research the locality to which you plan to travel. Learn about hiking or running trails near your accommodations. If you have the opportunity to book your own accommodations, pick a place with excellent fitness amenities. You might be able to find a hotel with in-room yoga or other fitness videos, a well-equipped fitness center, running trails, and so on. On a recent trip to Maui I was able to book great accommodations for my fitness needs by looking through a travel site beforehand. I searched through this list of Maui hotels and found one within my budget that had a 24-hour gym.

When packing, remember to bring along loose, comfortable clothing for working out. If you have portable workout equipment such as a simple exercise band, pack it so that you can take advantage of short timeframes in which to get a powerful workout in limited space. Also, never leave home without a refillable water bottle to help you remain properly hydrated and avoid purchasing unhealthy drinks.

On your flight, get a little exercise with simple stretches and in-flight calisthenics. Simple shoulder shrugs, side stretches, knee lifts and ankle rolls will help minimize many of the discomforts associated with long flights.

Throughout your trip, remain aware of opportunities for exercise. Take the stairs instead of riding an elevator or escalator. If your schedule is packed with meetings and events, use small breaks throughout the day to get a workout. For example, do some exercises between meetings using a chair and your exercise band. In a break during afternoon sessions, find a secluded spot to do a few crunches and lunges. Every little bit will help, and you will notice a decrease in travel-related stress as well as more physical energy when you put these tips into practice.

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