Sports Woman's legs in running movementSummer is a popular time to travel. But being on the road, or in a new place, or out of your daily routine can make it harder to exercise. Are you planning on any trips this summer? If so, don’t forget to make fitness part of your travel plans. Here are some ideas that can help you stay in good shape while you are traveling.

  1. Come up with a plan. It’s easy to get sidetracked if you don’t have a travel plan that includes time for exercise. Before you leave, give some thought to when you will exercise. Not whether, but when. Plan on it ahead of time and you’ll be more likely to do it once you’re there. Schedule time to exercise on your calendar each day. Also give some thought to how and where you will work out.
  2. Pack workout gear. Bring the gear you’ll need to be active. For instance, you may want to pack:
    • Sneakers and workout clothes. And if there’s a chance of rain or the weather is likely to be cooler, bring an umbrella, jacket, or hat for outdoor exercise.
    • Compact fitness equipment. Jump ropes, resistance bands, stretching straps, and pedometers are all small and lightweight.
    • Workout DVDs or videos. You can borrow workout DVDs from the library and play them on your laptop or on a DVD player in the hotel room. Or download workout videos to your laptop, smartphone, or tablet.
  3. Include active adventures in your travels. Consider a biking or walking tour around the area you’re visiting. Head to a local park to explore. If you’re going to be near a body of water, make time to swim, snorkel, kayak, or paddleboard. Or take a dance lesson, try a martial arts class, or go for a horseback ride. Getting involved in local activities can be a great way to have fun, exercise, and meet people, too.
  4. Research fitness facilities that might be available where you’re staying. Today most hotels have fitness centers either onsite or nearby. Most have a few pieces of cardio equipment, a few machines, and some free weights. If your hotel has a pool, pack a suit and go for a swim. If you don’t want to swim laps, you can always just walk or jog in the water. Some hotels even offer fitness classes, like yoga, at no cost or for a small fee. Some hotels also arrange guided runs or walking tours of the area.If your hotel doesn’t have a fitness center, go online to find out about gyms, yoga or Pilates studios, or other fitness centers in the area. Many fitness centers offer one-day passes or buddy passes (if you’re with someone who’s already a member). For a small fee, or even no cost in some cases, you may be able to work out at a gym. And if your home gym is a national chain, check to see if they have a facility in the area you are traveling to. This will allow you to visit for free.
  5. Have a backup bodyweight workout plan. Keep in mind that you really don’t need a gym or any fitness equipment to get a good workout. All you need is your own body. You can strength train with basic bodyweight exercises, like squats, lunges, planks, and push-ups. And you can do stretches for flexibility. Plan out your routine in advance, and then you’ll have it to fall back on whenever you need it.

 As you can see, there are a lot of options for staying active when you’re traveling. And there are many benefits to doing so. Exercise can boost your energy, improve your mood, and help you sleep better. Plus it can help you maintain your fitness and manage your weight. So this summer, don’t let travel derail your workout routine. Plan ahead and find ways to incorporate fitness into your summer adventures.