Regular exercise routine while traveling offers wide range of healthy benefits

Posted November 4, 2016


If you have ever traveled before — by car, plane, train, boat — we can all agree that it takes a toll on you mentally and physically. Who would have thought, sitting, motionless would cause such predicaments in our lives?  Whether it’s for business or pleasure, you need to get out of that rut and take care of yourself.


Image source: Big Stock.

Throw out the excuses and don’t skip out on your regular exercise routine. It does more benefits for you than just staying/getting in shape.

Many of us pack our running shoes with great intentions but, unfortunately, finding the time to break a sweat on the road is challenging. It happens, it’s called life, we have all been there before. However, that doesn’t give us the excuse; here are simple tips and even a quick workout at the end that you can even do in your hotel room, in your pjs, too.

The Top Tips to Stay Fit on Your Trip:

Prep Ahead                                                                                                                      Pack sneakers, workout gear, headphones and whatever else you need, just pack for success. Get information on your destination before you head there. Are there gym facilities where you are staying? Are there fun places to explore outside? Are there any studios in town?

Beat Jet Lag                                                                                                                    One of the best ways to overcome jet lag is to wake up and workout. It’s easy to skip a workout after hours of traveling, especially when you’re feeling tired. But think about how much better you’ll feel once you get moving.

Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!                                                                                            After you work out and especially after traveling. According to Dr. Parvez Dara, who, in addition to being a medical doctor is also a Master Certified Flight Instructor and a member of the Society of Aviation and Flight Educators with an airline transport pilot rating, “At altitude, air pressure is low, the water vapor content is low and compensatory hyperventilation (increased rate of breathing) is the norm. So there is excess water loss through breathing—the exchange of dry air for moist breath.”

This study shows that the little humidity in the airplane cabin can increase the risk of dehydration. Every passenger on the plane breathes in oxygen and releases carbon dioxide. Therefore, the plane pumps fresh air into the cabin but being at such high altitudes there is little moisture, resulting in the cabin air being dry. That is what makes your skin feel dehydrated. So it is essential to drink water. The general rule is to drink approximately 8 ounces of water for every hour in flight. Do remember that drinking alcohol or caffeine, is additionally dehydrating. So if you’re going to drink, you’ll need to drink more water as well.

Dine Right                                                                                                                      Do a little investigating before going to your destination. Travelers should always look up the menu and pick the healthiest meal ahead of time and stick to it. To make a nutritious choice think lean, clean n’ green.

To Drink or Not to Drink?                                                                                                 We want to live a balanced life, and this means not sacrificing the things we love. You only get to live once right? Keep it to a limit and stay hydrated by alternating water or nonalcoholic beverage for every cocktail. Otherwise, enjoy!

Get Your Zs                                                                                                              Traveling itself can be exhausting. Erin Hanlon, a research associate in endocrinology at the University of Chicago, helped lead the study that proves that sleep deprivation can lead to increased snacking and overeating, because of changes in our circadian rhythm. A good night’s sleep will be very beneficial for you and your trip.


Image source: Big Stock.

Now it’s time for your workout. Thanks to Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott from Tone It Up for setting up our fitness success no matter where we are. Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott are experts in fitness, nutrition and all things wellness, which led them to co-found Tone It Up.

Tone It Up is a fitness lifestyle brand that has expanded through all social medias. If your hotel doesn’t have a gym, or you simply don’t have the time, here are some simple exercises. No equipment is required, and they are quiet enough to do in any hotel room. The only thing needed is your motivation and a fun music playlist. In less than 30 minutes, you can get a full body workout with these moves.

No excuses, please. Let’s get started.

Before any workout, you want to start with at least a five-minute warm up. Here’s how you should prepare for your workout:

  • Jumping jacks X 30
  • Burpees x 20
  • Jumping jacks x 30
  • Burpees x 20

Circuit (About 20-25 Minutes):

Coffee Table Mountain Climber / Push Up Combo, Three Sets of 15:

To perform this exercise, start in pushup position with your hands on the coffee table. Try to keep your shoulders directly over your wrists. Do four knee drives, alternating right and left, bringing each knee to your chest. Contract your abs when bringing your knee in. Complete with a pushup, hands on table or floor. Get as low as you can get. If pushups are tough for you, don’t cut them out completely just do them afterward. Do so with your hands on the bed or for more of a challenge, elevate your feet on the bed.

Lunge or Split Squats, Three Sets of 15 Per Leg:                                              


Image source: Big Stock.

Begin by placing one foot on the couch or coffee table (your back leg) and stepping away from it with your other leg so that you are in a basic split stance position. Drop down into the split squat. Try having your back knee touch the ground. Finish by straightening your leg back up again.

Expert Tip: For the best technique, try to keep the knee of your front leg behind your toes. Go slow and burn those abs out.


Image source: Big Stock.

Expert Tip: Be mindful of your position. To get good form raise arm overhead which will in turn pull your posture upright, and bring your knee over toes; relieving pressure off your knee. 

Drop It Like It’s Hot with Wall Sits, Three Sets of 60 Seconds:

First, you’re going to want to find some open wall space. Then, with your back against the wall, drop down so that your legs are at 90-degree angle and your knees are behind your toes. Think of sitting in a chair. Hold this position for 60 seconds. Tip: Don’t let your glutes sink lower than your knees.

Image source: Google.

Challenge Yourself with Calf Raises Three Sets of 20:

Get a lift with a few sets of calf raises. Roll up onto the ball of your foot and release without letting the heels touch the ground. If you want to add a challenge, step up on a set of books and allow the heels to dip off the back. Steady yourself by holding onto the wall, lower your heels slightly below the books and roll on up onto the balls of your feet.

Table Triceps Dips, Three Sets of 20:

Image source: Big Stock.

Facing away from the table, place your hands on the coffee table about shoulder-width apart and extend your legs straight out in front of you. Bend your elbows, allowing your body to drop toward the floor. Touch your butt to the floor or go as deep as you possibly can. Then push back up to complete the dip.

Expert Tip: Try to have your elbows go straight back, and not flare out to the side like a chicken. You can also bend your knees to make this exercise a little bit easier, or lift one leg at a time to make this move harder.


Image source: Big Stock.

Rotary Twists, Because We Want Abs! Three Sets of 50 (25 Each Way):

Start in sit up position with your feet tucked under the bottom of the couch (place a pillow above your feet if the gap between the couch and the floor is too broad). Engage your core by drawing your belly button to your back. Lean back, dropping your body toward the floor, like you are going to do a sit up, stopping when you are at the halfway point. Once you are here, you should feel your abs! Optional: Put your hands straight out in front of you as if you are reaching for something and twist your upper body side to side. Otherwise, make sure keep your elbows out and chest open.

Expert Tip: Keep your core tight and your chest up tall for proper technique. Once you sink back or feel it more in the lower part of your back, stop and reset.


Image source: Big Stock.

Front Plank with Leg Lifts, Three Sets of 60s (Switching Legs at 30 Seconds):

Start in a front plank position on your forearms. Make sure shoulders are in alignment with elbows. Set a strong plank foundation first by activating your core. That means, belly button sucked in; think of a string pulling your belly button through your back to the ceiling), flex your quads and squeeze your glutes. Once you feel you have a correctly formed plank, lift one leg up. When you lift your leg flex and squeeze your glutes while incorporating small pulse contractions with the leg in the air. Then switch to the other leg at 30 seconds.

Expert Tip: Notice where you are feeling the exercise, if you are not targeting the correct area that means you are over compensating elsewhere, so reset. If your back starts sinking in, reset as well.


Image source: Big Stock.


Image source: Big Stock.

None of you are quitters, if you got more time to give move onto the couch. Before you get too comfortable, here’s the set up: Move your butt toward the edge of the couch so that only your legs are hanging off the edge. You can have your arms resting by your sides or keep them above your head.

Tip, holding your arms above your head can help with balance and also make it harder. Always remember, keep your core engaged and drive your back down flat on the couch. If your back is arching during the exercises, its recommended that you move your body further up on the couch so that less of your legs are hanging off.

Leg Lifts Try for Two Sets of 20:

Keeping your feet together, slowly drop your legs below the level of the couch and then raise them up to 90 degrees. You can either point your toes up toward the ceiling or pull your toes back toward your body. All depends on what area you want to target more. Pulling your toes back can provide more of a calf and hamstring stretch during the exercise.


Do the Splits Two Sets of 40:

With your legs straight out from the edge of the couch, open your legs into a splits position. Then bring them back together, crossing your right foot over your left. Immediately go back opening to the splits position. When returning to the middle again, put your left foot over your right. Imagine your legs like a pair of scissors.


Image source: Flickr.

Flippers Two Sets of 20 (Each Leg):

The key to this exercise is the range of motion and do at slow speed. Start with one foot up, trying to touch the ceiling, and the other foot down at the even level of the couch. Hold then switch. Alternate your legs up and down.

Tip: don’t pass the 90-degree angle.


Image source: Big Stock.

Stationary Holds Two Sets of 60 Seconds:

Final move = burn it out! Keep your feet together and hold your legs straight out so that they’re even with the level of the couch.

Thanks for another killer workout, Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott.