We all end up having to travel in our life. Whether it's a work trip, quick weekend getaway or a full fledged family vacation, traveling brings many challenges for bodybuilders. Being on the road or in hotels immediately removes the comfort of preparing your own food. Should you want to keep to a healthy meal plan, food needs to be cooked and packed in advance. Otherwise it's too easy to give in to temptation. Getting to a gym can be a pain if you don't belong to a corporate facility and hotel gyms usually don't offer much. Here are a few tips and tricks that can help you keep up with your fitness while travelling.
Prep your meals before leaving
It's always better to be prepared. When you are planning trip add a few extra minutes to plan your meals. Count how many people are going, who needs to eat, and how much of everything you will need to cook to last the trip. The next step is to cook and portion your food the day before you leave. If your home or work life is hectic, use the initial trip planning to schedule in time to cook the meals. Lastly portion out the meals in to containers and pack them in the cooler. Most box stores have great deals on large coolers around camping season and you can pick one up for cheap. They also make coolers that are refrigerated and plug into your cars 12v outlet. Cooler packs will keep you meals safe while traveling and most hotels have mini fridges in the rooms to keep things fresh for the whole trip. Taking the time to prep and pack your own meals will not only keep your fitness goals on track but save you money.
Average cost of Breakfast - $9/person
Average Cost of Lunch $12/person
Average Cost of Dinner $18/person
This adds up quick and doesn't include snacks throughout the day. Preparing ahead of time might be a pain but could save you hundreds.
Travel Tip 1 - Call ahead to your hotel and reserve a microwave and fridge for your room. Warm up meals and great for making breakfasts.
Travel friendly fitness
Just because you are on the road doesn't mean you can't workout. Keeping consistent with exercise will help you sleep better and assist in not binging on fast food. The best option for you while you travel is to find a local gym. If you belong to facilities like GoodLife Fitness, L.A. Fitness or Worlds Gym they offer access to all of their clubs with your membership. Should you not have that membership, many of them offer a "trial" pass anywhere from 3 - 7 days. These are good to use once in a while to get access while you are on the road.
Travel Tip 2 - Use free trials for gyms to save money while on the road.
If a gym is out of the question, plan to do activities that are physically active to keep everyone moving. Body weight workouts are also a good way to stimulate the muscles and not lose the gains. Here is and example of a body weight program you could follow:
Do the following for time
100 air squats
50 push ups
25 pull ups
50 sit ups
5 rounds of
5 Pull ups
10 push ups
20 jump squats
Use local parks and play structures for a chin up bar. Run or jog to the park as a warm-up and jog back as a cool down. Get creative with your training and make it fun.
Travel Tip 3 - Prepare some meals that can be eaten cold. This way if don't have access to a microwave you will still get all of your nutrition in.
Stick to an standard sleep schedule
Its always tempting to stay up late in a new city and you hear all to often some who just came back from travelling " I could use another week just recover from the last week". This feeling is the result of a few things, missing out on precious hours of sleep, not getting the proper nutrition, and skipping your workouts. Your workouts help keep you energized and when you skip them your body feels it. Nutrition is responsible for fuelling your body and sleep repairs it.
This is why it's a good idea to plan your day around a normal sleep schedule. If you go to sleep between 10 and 11 pm then stick to that and plan to get up early to take advantage of the day. Allow your body to keep to its natural cycle and provide you with adequate energy. It will also prevent you from sleeping in and missing things like breakfast and a morning workout. Both of which are vital to your goals.
Travel Tip 4 - Use Melatonin to help reset your internal clock while traveling so you can stick to your regular sleep schedule.
Just because you have to travel doesn't mean you can't achieve your fitness goals. Use these tips and tricks to stay on track and make the most out of a tough situation.
As always consistency is key and keeping up with everything while on vacation will lead to the best results over the course of the year.