Vacations are the most important part of our lives. The hectic world that we live in dictates that we must be excellent professionals which often leads people to overlook their vacations.
Since we just entered Summertime and many of you out there are contemplating a getaway, I decided to share with you a few ways that will allow you to stay in shape while you are having fun during your time off.
Before summer, there are lot of people who get locked up in gyms and go on unhealthy diets in order to look their best when the time comes to hit the beach. It is also the same kind of people who often complain that they got sidetracked while on their summer vacation.
Let’s set the record straight: Being on vacation doesn’t mean that you will let go of everything. There is a time to let go and there is a time to work hard. But when you have worked so hard for something (body goals for example), dropping everything once you are officially off duty does not make a lot of sense.
So here are 9 ways that will help you stay in shape while on vacation:
Table of Contents
1. Stay active
Try to be as active as possible and move.
Skip using the car and elevator as much as you can. I remember seeing a picture from Steve Maxwell, a 62y.old coach with the body of a 20y.o. showing how many steps he did BEFORE he got breakfast. If he can do it at the age of 62, none of us under that age have any excuses.
Go swimming, hiking and do water sports like water polo or water volley if available.
You can find a lot of these when you are at a beach resort.
If not, hiking is a great way to break some sweat, get some great oxygen in your system and also replenish your mind and soul.
2. Eat the right foods at the right time
As a general guide:
- Avoid any type of processed food. I classify anything that has more than 2-3 stages of production as processed food. To quote Jack Lalanne, if man made it, don’t eat it!
- Avoid eating too many carbs especially if you are not active.
- Focus on eating healthy fats (olive oil, avocados etc) and protein such as lean meats. Eating good fish is a great way to ensure that you get the best of 2 worlds (omega 3 fats plus protein)
- AVOID SUGAR. I will write a very detailed blog on the types of sugars soon.
- Eat a big salad with every meal. There are 2 rules you must follow: a) ditch the weird dressings and stick with olive oil and vinegar or olive and lemon juice. b) Eat the salad first! This will enable you to prepare your stomach for the main course while at the same time it will protect you from overeating.
- Eat a couple of fruits with every meal but make sure you avoid fruits that are too sweet (such as bananas). Instead, focus on berries and citrus fruit.
- If you gave been dieting before going on a vacation (which is usually the case), don’t start eating full force as rebound weight gain will occur.
On the flip side, don’t be super strict either, as you really need a mental and physical break from your dieting as well.
(note: These nutritional guidelines are just the tip of the iceberg. I have a lot of articles coming up on how to eat properly in Nutrition section of the website so stay tuned. )
3. Get some exercise before your meals
This is a great way to help your insulin to stay sensitive (which means you will have better glucose uptake and overall better hormonal health) and your body will use the food to rebuild the sore muscles and not store as much fat.
Swimming for 30 minutes or doing some sport before breakfast, lunch and dinner is perfect for this.
You can also do yoga or tai chi for the same amount of time.
Or you could perform some bodyweight exercises or calisthenics like pushups, pull ups and squats.
Try doing 10 of each if you are a novice, 50 if you are more advanced and shoot for 100 of each if you are really hardcore.
You can still stay in shape and even gain some muscle and lose fat if you train like every day, even if you don’t have access to a full gym in order to do your regular workout.
4. Rest more
You are off work but your body will still spend energy while on vacation. This means that your body will still need a good amount of rest.
So try to sleep before 12 (yeah I know that you want to party, but partying is not part of this blog.)
5. Sleep in
Since you are off work, turn the alarm clock off and sleep in.
This is the best time for you to sleep as much as possible in order to reboot your entire system and be able to not only stay healthy but also to be able to perform better once you are back.
6. Switch off your phone
This is a no-brainer but I do have to say this: Don’t work on your vacation. Being away will allow you to come back and crush it harder and avoid the trap of getting burned.
By switching off your phone and not checking your emails, you will not be tempted to answer work-related matters, you will not stress and you will be able to enjoy your vacations for what they truly are: a time off from work!
7. Use technology as little as possible
This is a good opportunity to detox and get your mind off tools that you tend to over-rely on while you are back in your normal way of living.
Try to spend your vacations without using your laptop or checking apps on your smartphone whenever you need some kind of information (unless there is no other way to obtain it).
Give your brain a break and stimulate it by picking up a book instead.
It is always good to take a break from things and technology is no exception.
8. Experience new things
Being on vacation, especially in another country is exactly what should inspire you to try new things.
Foods, sports, any kind of new experience (that will keep you safe) is a great way to escape your normal routine and find a new pleasure in life by expanding your horizons.
9. Just enjoy yourself
It is after all a vacation and worrying too much should not be a part of it!
Just let go. It is OK if everything is not under your control at all times. Just be careful of your surroundings, be safe and create memories in your own special way.
Following these simple tips will allow you to enjoy your vacations while at the same time staying in great shape. I hope you enjoyed this article as much as I did writing it. Putting together this article took a bit of time but it will only take you a second to click on Share buttons and show your support to this blog.
Also if you have any comments or questions, feel free to leave a comment and I will get back to you as soon as possible. Thanks!
Have fun and live your life, strong, healthy and free!
by Nick Sigma
CWC, EH, E-YRT200