Holiday, what a lovely excuse to sink into indulgence mode! For many, going on a holiday equals being able to eat and drink whatever they want – with a result of gaining a few kilos in a short amount of time. While shifting back to your busy day-to-day life, having to worry about losing that holiday weight can be daunting.
Believe me when I say this: there are simple ways to stay healthy during your travels. It requires a bit of planning ahead and a right amount of self-control but it won’t be as hard as you might think. Read below my crucial tips for having a healthier holiday!
WALK OR CYCLE.
Whether it’s a vast metropolis or a cozy village, sightseeing by foot or by bicycle are definitely a healthier and a more refreshing way to get around than renting a car or always taking the subway. Therefore: don’t forget to pack shoes that you can walk long distances with! If you only bring your flip flops and high heels, it’s certain that you will use it as an excuse to not strain your poor feet.
The more you walk, the more it will affect you in a positive way. Walking, too, is exercise – it energizes the body, tones up muscles, builds a healthier heart, and regulates weight. To level it up a bit, try to find as many hills to climb on as possible (if it’s a viewpoint, great landscape is guaranteed!), and always take the stairs instead of the elevator.
Additionally, many hotels and hostels these days offer low cost bicycle rentals that won’t break your bank. Grab one, and you’ll be able to cover an extensive area, while having access to places where you couldn’t drive a car to.
It might sound like a lot of trouble to think about these aspects on a holiday but repeat it a few times, and it becomes a habit. This habit will then stay with you forever! You will automatically choose the stairs or even leave the high heels at home, as you’d rather go with your walking shoes. 🙂
EAT NUTRITIOUS FOOD.
This is probably going to be the hardest one to fulfill. To the majority, food is one of the single most important things on a holiday, and since it is indeed a holiday, one should not have to refuse from everything unhealthy. On the other hand, you shouldn’t go overboard either, and eat croissants with chocolate spread for breakfast, a burger for lunch and a pizza for dinner.
The key here is The Golden Mean. Make sure most of your decisions will be based on healthiness rather than indulgence. THEN add some of your favorite treats to go with your meals. When you’ve finished the nutritious meal, you won’t be able to eat as much junk as you would when eating to an empty stomach.
Depending on where in the world you are, you might find delicious but healthy treats as well. In tropical countries, fruits are straight up delicious. And have you ever had a fresh, mature coconut? Crack it open, drink the water to quench your thirst, and then snack those crispy insides!
A few tips and tricks to control your eating:
- Stock up. Before heading to the airport or a day-trip, prepare a whole grain sandwich to-go, topped with fried eggs and salad. Buy a bag of nuts and a few pieces of fruit for emergency snacks. This way you won’t be tempted to buy a hot dog, when you suddenly start feeling hungry.
- Drink water. Yup, sipping water throughout the day keeps you from unnecessary snacking. It also eliminates false hunger and keeps you hydrated. I always carry a water bottle with me – you should, too! 🙂
- Don’t skip breakfast. If you eat breakfast in the morning, you will be less hungry throughout the day. Additionally, a breakfast high in protein will be especially beneficial in controlling yourself during the entire day. Eggs, plain greek yoghurt, cottage cheese or even peanut butter will do the trick!
- Plan ahead. While having breakfast, try to draw up a meal map in your head for the upcoming day. It obviously depends on what you’re doing but the aim here is to not skip meals. If you do, you will make up for it later on, and trust me – it will be way harder to control yourself at that point.
SAVE TIME FOR EXERCISE.
Save 20-40 minutes a day and you’ll easily maintain a good fitness level throughout your vacation. Options are countless but my personal favorites are:
Jogging. You can do this ANYWHERE! In fact, it’s a great way to explore your surroundings, no matter if you’re staying for a few nights or a few weeks. If it gets too hot during the day to jog, then make it your morning routine: set your alarm to go off early to enjoy the cool breeze and perhaps even a sunrise. If the climate is temperate, you can go jogging at any time. Bring your phone with you to capture the landscape, while pausing to have a sip of water!
Body weight workout. OH YES, this one gives you so much freedom and can also be done literally anywhere. Staying at a hotel in a big city where jogging is off limits? Go ahead and do the exercises in your room. If there’s a gym – even better! Prefer to get outdoors? Go jogging until you find a good spot for a body weight workout – such as a bench, a kids’ playground or even just a grassy area.
Yoga. If your body and mind feel tense, you might be better off with a good session of yoga. Yoga centers can be found everywhere these days, so do your research online, and pick your favorite kind of class to attend. If you’re short on cash, do yoga in your room. I tend to just flow from one asana to another from memory but if you’re not familiar with yoga poses, use YouTube to find a class or two! There are also websites available, such as Yogaia, that have different options on memberships.
Water sports. What could be a better way to enjoy the outdoors and get some fresh air? If your holiday takes place by a coast with good surfing conditions, sign up for a beginners class and go give it a shot! If surfing seems a bit too extreme for you, rent a kayak or a SUP board and forget reality, while enjoying the presence of nature.
Next time you go on a holiday, make it a healthy one! ?