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Exercise During the Holidays?

Are you planning a holiday trip, or do you travel a lot for your job? Being away from home can disrupt your exercise routine and lead to unwanted weight gain and stress.

By thinking ahead, you can still include daily physical activity in your busy schedule.

If you are driving, take 10-minute activity breaks every two hours. Walk around rest stops, state parks, shopping centers, downtown squares or parking lots. Stretch a little before you get back in the car, and you’ll notice that you feel less stiff and sore and more alert while on the road.

If you are flying, walk the airport concourses. Wear a backpack that isn’t too full to tone your muscles. If you expect a layover, or there might be a chance your flights could be delayed, check the airport’s website to see if they have a fitness center where you can work out. If one is available, keep your workout clothes in your carry-on luggage and wear a pair of tennis shoes.

If you will be staying at a hotel, see if they have a fitness room, pool or other recreational facilities. Some workout rooms are open 24 hours a day. Many hotels also offer maps of nearby walking or running trails. A few even have smaller pieces of  exercise equipment that can be brought to your room for you to work out privately. Some larger hotels and resorts can connect you with a personnel trainer if you request one. If the hotel does not have a fitness  facility onsite, ask whether they have an arrangement for guests to use a local gym.

If nothing is available, you can still march while watching T.V., or dance to music on the radio in your room. You can also pack your own fitness equipment. Stretch bands sold at many sporting goods stores are easy to pack in your suitcase or carry-on luggage. You can also take your own free weights or bike if you are traveling by car.

Plan an active vacation

Many families spend holidays together at resorts that offer skiing, swimming, hiking, golf or other fun activities. Even cruise ships now have climbing walls, pools, tracks, and Pilates and dance classes.

Even if you are just going to see relatives in your old hometown, plan some time for exercise each day. Take a brisk walk through the neighborhood; jog at the high school track; play basketball, soccer or tennis at a local park; or have a friendly game of flag football or kickball in the backyard.

You can also ice skate, ride a bike, take a yoga class, dance or pay for a day pass at a local YMCA. Not only will you stay fit, you will feel more relaxed during your visit and less tired when you get home.

 

This post was originally published for Notes on the Road on October 24th, 2013