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Guide to Staying Fit While Traveling

  • December 16, 2013
  • By Brittany
Guide to Staying Fit While Traveling

Hi all!  Now that the holidays are in full-swing and we have a few months of cold weather ahead of us, more and more of us will be traveling to visit family or find some place warm as a reprive from the cold.  I love traveling as much as the next person but it can be difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle.  Here are a few tips to help you stay healthy when traveling!

We all know that flying is basically incubating yourself in a germ pool for endless hours.  Since nobody wants to be sick on vacation, here are a few tips for staying healthy while traveling.

Stay Healthy

1.)  Exercise.  Before you leave, make sure you are exercising on your norma schedule as this helps strengthen your immune system and will help your body withstand the stress from flying and time zone changes.


2.)  Pop vitamin D.  Vitamin C was long through to be the vitamin of choice of preventing sickness but vitamin D has actually been shown to boost the immune system.  Start popping these babies before you fly.


3.)  Stay hydrated.  We all know that flying is dehydrating so bring your own water bottle and keep sipping.


4.)  Sanitize.  Planes really gross me out!  Keep a bottle of sanitizer on hand and use it frequently.


5.)  Sleep.  I know it is exciting to watch movie after movie on the plane, but try to get some decent shut eye to allow the body time to recover.


6.)  Deal with your stress before you leave.  Traveling is stressful enough.  Take care of as many issues as you can before you take off so you don’t have any extra issues on your mind when you leave.


7.) Eat well.  Try to either pack your own healthy snacks or buy healthy snacks to avoid tons of salt (dehydrating), sugar, oil and fat.


Jet lag is inevitable if you are making a large time zone shift.  There is not much you can do to prevent it but there are some tips you can try to help you adjust.

luggage 2

Prevent Jet Lag 

1.)  Change your sleep schedule.  About a week before you leave, try adjusting your sleep schedule slightly so that you are spending more time awake during daytime hours at your destination.  This may mean going to be later and waking up later or going to bed earlier and waking up earlier.  For me, traveling from the East Coast to Australia, I need to stay up later and wake up later.  The key is make small shifts throughout the week to gradually introduce your body to the change.


2.) Do yoga.  The mind/body connection in yoga is a powerful tool to dealing with jet lag.  A couple of classes I find really helpful are:


3.)  When you get on the plane, immediately adjust your watch to the local time at your destination.  Try to sleep only if you would be asleep at your destination.  It is ok to take a short nap to help you stay up later if you need to but really try to adjust to the local time as soon as possible.


4.)  When you arrive at your destination, do not sleep until the evening local time!  This is very important to helping you adjust.

A long flight can make you feel stiff and sluggish.  Here are a few tips to stay moving and keep your body in tip top form for when you arrive! 


1.) Stretch.  You can stretch in your seat by doing things like chair twists, upper back stretches, seated forward bends and side stretches.  You should also take advantage of getting up and doing some standing stretches like quad stretches, calf stretches and figure four stretches.


2.) Go for a walk at the airport during your layover.  When you have some time on the ground, don’t just sit at the gate.  Take a walk around the airport to stretch our your legs, get the blood flowing and get a little exercise!


3.) Get up frequently when on the flight.  This is when you can stretch but it also helps promote blood flow and prevents cramping.


4.) Keep lower body moving to prevent deep vein thrombosis.  On long flights this can be a real risk.  Do things like heel raises and toe raises to keep the lower body moving.


5.) Resistance band.  If you are really hard core and feel like you need an actual workout on a flight.  Bring a resistance band and do a few exercises with the band.


And there you have it!  A few tips to staying healthy on the road.

Readers, where are you traveling to this holiday season?  Any tips for staying healthy and fit on the road?  Do you have one essential item you can’t live without when traveling?





By Brittany, December 16, 2013
  • The Dose of Reality
    December 16, 2013

    Fantastic tips! I’m traveling in about a week so I’m bookmarking this to brush up again before we leave! I especially like your anti-jet lag tips. SO important!! Thank you!! –Lisa

  • Elise @
    December 16, 2013

    When I travel i try to keep with my normal workout routine as much as possible. I try to still get up in the morning and get moving. Oh and planes gross me out too!

  • Kimberly
    December 16, 2013

    Great tips! Have a safe and fun trip!

    I try to really plan ahead before a trip to avoid the stress of forgetting something or not being prepared on my trip. Therefore I start packing really far in advance.

  • Davida @ The Healthy Maven
    December 16, 2013

    I’m off to Minnesota on Friday! I get sick every single year so I’ll have to try some of your tips. If I don’t get sick I owe you a hugeeee Christmas present!

  • Amy Powell
    December 16, 2013

    great tips! I will say it’s amazing how hard it is to stay hydrated when on vacation. love the idea of doing yoga too. may have to incorporate that next time I go somewhere.

  • Jillienne @ ChasingRaspberries
    December 16, 2013

    Excellent advice! I will be using your tips and tricks in my upcoming travels!

  • Allie
    December 16, 2013

    So much truth here!! I hope you survived your LONG flight and are jet lag free! Some things I can’t live without (other then my laptop and iPhone!) are healthy snacks. I seriously need an additional bag of food when I travel – it’s insane.

  • Nicole
    December 16, 2013

    Great tips! I totally am with you on getting up a lot and moving/stretching during flights. It totally helps, and when I don’t do it, I feel so stiff and get cramped legs. Hope you moved around a lot during your flight to Australia!

  • Joi @ Rx Fitness Lady
    December 17, 2013

    Very useful and timely post. I love the sleep prep tips. I’m a pro at swinging sleep patterns working the night shift & you hit the nail on the head with your advice.

    I have to have music driving or flying!

  • Sun
    December 17, 2013

    Great tips! I am sadly not traveling anywhere exotic over the holidays but agree that getting up to move during a long flight and avoiding sleeping until it’s nighttime at the destination location are key to a great trip!

  • Lauren @ Focused To Be Fit
    December 17, 2013

    Ohh, love this post – awesome tips! Thankfully, I don’t have to travel much at all this year. I have to have my ipod or a good book, as well as, water and gum!

  • Elyse @ Lizzie Fit
    December 18, 2013

    I won’t be traveling via air this holiday but I will be driving all over the Maritimes. Knowing others who are traveling are sticking to their guns (like you) makes me feel a little more accountable. Sometimes I need a reminder that just because I’m being lazy, doesn’t mean the rest of the world is too 😉

  • Catherine Gacad
    December 21, 2013

    i didn’t know that about vitamin D. great tip!

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