Fit Travel Strategies: 8 Ways to Stay Balanced on Vacation


Sometimes I struggle with impulse control when it comes to food, especially sweets, so vacation and travel in general tends to be a free-for-all. If you’re anything like me then you understand this but we can work this out!  I’ve been traveling a lot this month and have two more trips coming up, one at the end of the month for business-play and the other at the end of June for straight up vacation, so I’ve been figuring out how to keep my eating habits on the road balanced (or close enough) so that I don’t feel guilty for vacation indulgences.

Here are eight strategies that seem to be working.

Start Pre-Gaming

You know the old cliche that goes something like, “Stay ready so you don’t have to get ready” right? Well, I can’t stress how important that is. Don’t wait a week before your trip to get serious about working out and watching what you eat because, guess what, you’re not going to get any results that are really worth it, and you’re going to undo everything on your trip anyway. Start developing routinely better habits in advance enough that they start to become part of your life. That way, by the time you get on your trip you’ll be in a mindset where you’ll want to work out and where you might not even want certain foods and beverages.


Santa Barbara Beach and Golf Resort

Vacation, and even working trips should still be fun getaways so chill out. Don’t police yourself to the point where you don’t have a good time and don’t beat yourself up if you eat something that doesn’t make you feel good. Remember, you can do better at your next meal, and you can always reset and recharge tomorrow.

Strategize Your Travel Diet

If you’re staying at a hotel, see what food they offer in advance so you know what you’re getting into and try to at least  keep your breakfast consistently healthy. Stay away from the pancakes and waffles or don’t go there every single day. Go for omelets, boiled eggs, fruit, veggies and yogurt (depending on the sugar content) instead.  If you’re a heavy drinker then beware the sugary cocktails!

Bring Your Own Snacks

I’m a carry-on champion so I don’t bring a ton of snacks with me but when I do it’s usually nuts and bars like KIND bars and Lara bars, and when I get to my destination I grab a few apples and bananas to keep on hand. The latter two items tend to be abundantly available at hotels for free, and if you’re staying in an apartment they’re the two good-for-you foods that definitely won’t be hard to find. Snacks will keep you from overeating and can help you stay on track if you’re someone who needs to eat every few hours (raises hand).

Do Some Quick Workouts

All it takes is 15 minutes of interval training in your room. I like to get it in in the afternoon but it depends on how my day goes. My favorite app for intervals is SWorkit. SWorkit randomly selects moves like burpees, planks, jumping jacks, etc and times your intervals and rest periods as you go.

Paddle Boarding
Preparing to fall off a paddle board. I was terrible.

Beach Time

Meditate on the beach and/or find a nice yoga or Pilates app (SWorkit also has yoga) so you can work out outside, go swimming or get involved in some watersports. This is a two for one deal. You get your workout in and beach time too. If you’re going somewhere that doesn’t have a beach then walk it out!

Use the Gym

Santa Barbara Golf and Beach Resort Curacao
Gym at the Santa Barbara Beach and Golf Resort in Curacao.

Utilizing your hotel gym, if it’s decent enough, or even fitness classes if offered, are other viable options too.

Drink Green Tea

I’m a tea drinker and believe in the power of green tea. Seriously, I credit green tea with helping me get my pooch smaller so, I try to have at least two cups of it every day, even when I travel. I try to drink this before consuming breakfast. My green tea on vacation practice is new. I’ve only been on one trip since incorporating it in my routine and I haven’t had a hard time getting it but again, check where you’re staying in advance to see if they have it otherwise you might have to bring your own.

What do you do when you travel? Do you shirk your fitness routine and try to find balance?