trekTravelling usually means getting out of your daily routine. This can be positive; after all, a family holiday is intended as a stress relief. But while we all love sipping cocktails poolside and indulging in five course meals, none of us want to return home with a few extra pounds on our hips. Here are the essentials for staying fit on the road:

 

Plan to be Healthy

If you normally go to the gym every day, keep it up. Choose a hotel that has a pool, gym, even exercise classes and personal trainers. When it’s easy to exercise, you’ll be more likely to do it—before you head off for that strawberry daiquiri.

Choose an Active Holiday

Can’t afford a hotel with gym? Or simply don’t want to be stuck inside a fitness studio on your only two weeks off? No problem. Make your family holiday an active one. Whether you enjoy beach volleyball, hiking, or skiing, there are opportunities to suit every season and everyone’s taste. Pick something you enjoy and you may even lose a few pounds!

hikeExercise as a Family

If you’re travelling with kids, opt for activities the little ones can do as well. These will vary depending on their age, of course. If it’s an infant, go jogging as you push them in the stroller, which will work your arm muscles as well as your legs. Smaller kids can be an inspiration – teach them how to swim and you’ll be moving around in the water as well. With teenagers, why not do something all together and bond through a windsurfing course? There are options for every age group.

Bring Your Own Gear

Your suitcase may be packed to the brim, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t space for a few fitness gadgets. Just throw out one pair of high heels (harmful to your spine anyways) and you’ve made space for the essentials: a jump rope, a yoga band and a few tension bands. The first will get your
heart rate pumping while the other two can help with stretching and toning exercises. Pair that with a few lunges, squats, push-ups and sit-ups, and you’re ready to hit the beach in a bikini.

Eating Out

Be measured about your meals and make sure they are balanced with adequate sources of protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats.  Try to stay away from fast food and opt for affordable restaurants with good quality food and lean options. And keep in mind that drinks contain calories, too. Enjoy one strawberry daiquiri, not three.

Isabel Bohrer is a freelance writer based in Madrid, Spain.