There is nothing better than being on holiday and over-indulging in the delicacies of a country’s cuisine, but when reality hits and on top of going back to work, you have fallen far off your fitness habits, getting back into it is that much harder.
This isn’t to say you shouldn’t take a break from your grueling fitness routine to become a true hedonist for the duration of your trip, but if you are anything like me, you will feel that that extra macaron or piece of cake is that much more rewarding if you keep up your routine (somewhat). Additionally, these activities will typically stick out as a fond memory from your trip.
These are the ways I have kept up with fitness in the past, no matter (and literally no matter) where I have been:
1) Classic running
Admittedly, I feel awkward doing this in lots of places where running in the streets isn’t a common affair, but this is undisputedly the best way to see a new place. While you are running, you are meandering down roads and passing people and sights you wouldn’t normally see. When I travel, I always try to incorporate at least one run in, and weirdly that run always sticks out as one of my coolest memory of my trips. Plus, without knowing ‘half-way points’ in a new location, I typically end up running much further than normal.
Running the Shanghai streets with FitFam
This is still my favorite app for exercise, as it requires very little equipment and makes me feel like a true Spartan, testing me to my absolute limits. The app is filled with body-weight exercise routines all named after Ancient Greek Gods. When I was in Auroville, India, I grew tired of running through the village paths and started doing these workouts in the fields near my lone guest house. I definitely got some stares from the locals as I frogger jumped along the ground.
3) Take a Class a la Local Sport
You are traveling somewhere totally new, so the sports in the area will likely be different from what you are used to. Embrace it, and join in! If you are in Thailand, take a few Muay Thai classes. If you are in China, try some Kung Fu. This is the best way to experience a culture, meet friends, and quickly pick up on a local language. When I was living briefly in Manila, Philippines, I would go to the one of MANY boxing academies in the area. Unlike gyms, these were much more ubiquitous. The strongest community I found was in Shanghai (also in Hong Kong and Beijing), called FitFam, which was a free way to work out with plenty of people actually living in the city.
I fell in love with Tim early on in his Youtube career and have never cheated on him with another online yoga teacher. His inviting yet soothing voice, California vibe, and experience makes him that much more appealing than other online teachers. His classes range from beginner to advanced and average about 30 minutes or so. As long as you have a yoga mat or some type of carpet with you, you are good to go. I have met the guy briefly in person, and fell in love with him on the spot.
5) Use Nature for its purpose, adventure and exploration
It is there for humans to roam, so use it. Rent a mountain bike and go, hike the endless trails, and even use it as your makeshift gym. Nature becomes a limitless place for getting your workout in.
Traveling should prioritize relaxing, but incorporating fitness in there will make the journey more memorable and have you not feeling an ounce of guilt for eating a few more pastries along the way.