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Good morning, and Happy Wednesday!  Many of you have asked how to squeeze in workouts while traveling, and this is something I have a lot of experience with, given that I travel every Monday-Thursday for work.  Eventually, I’ll do an entire post based on my personal habits and tips for exercising while on the road (for work or for pleasure), but for today, I wanted to reiterate the tips from a great article I recently read.  The Runner’s World piece discusses 10 tips to help fit in fitness on the road, and below I provide my quick thoughts for each (I’ve also re-ordered to put my favorites first!).

  1. Run (or walk!) locally.  One of the reasons I enjoy traveling for work is that I get to run in new locations all the time!  As long as you scope out safe areas, and take appropriate safety precautions (run in daylight if you can, or wear reflective/ lighted clothing; always preview the area via online maps, or search for other runners’ routes via MapMyRun; wear a RoadID or carry an ID with you), I think running in new areas is a fun way to explore a new location and keep your workouts exciting!my roadID
  2. Run early. Well, I wouldn’t say this is my favorite all the time – it is often painful to roll out of bed at zero-dark-thirty!  But this is truly the only way to guarantee that my workout will happen, so I try to stick to morning workouts as much as possible.
  3. Eat health(il)y. Yes, it’s true … I pack my suitcase with healthy travel snacks (some of which I mentioned in this post), so I always have something to rely on if healthy options are not available.  It takes extra planning, but it’s worth it to know that I always have healthy snacks on hand!healthy travel snacks
  4. Mix it up.  You know from this post that I love squeezing in 10-15 minute bursts of interval or strength training, even in hotel rooms.  So head on over to my Pinterest boards or my list of 7 hotel workouts, and get moving!pinterest board
  5. Keep it short on busy days.  We all have those days where every precious second counts, but even on those days, something is a whole lot better than nothing!  Try to squeeze in whatever you can, even on busy weeks – you’ll have more energy and feel more accomplished afterwards.
  6. Get running routes from your hotel. Westin chains offer index card-sized print-outs of local running routes, and many other hotel chains will be able to point you in the right direction, if you don’t feel like exploring yourself!westin running route
  7. Plan your accommodations at hotel chains that offer fitness centers.  Even though I prefer running outside, there’s always that time when I’m completely time-squeezed, the weather is awful, or I need to have my Blackberry right on hand.  In those instances, having a hotel gym is invaluable.  I always try to check the website before making my reservation to ensure that a gym will be available.
  8. Travel comfortably.  I’m not sure that going for a run on a layover for a work trip (and walking into a client sweaty) would go over so well, but I get the point of this tip – walk as much as possible while traveling!  If you’re sightseeing or traveling for pleasure, walking is a great way to squeeze in exercise without thinking about it or taking time away from your trip.  If I have a few minutes to kill in an airport, I’ll usually try to walk up and down the hallways rather than sitting, just to get in a bit of movement.
  9. Go up. I don’t take advantage of hotel staircases as much as I could, but they provide a great workout when you’re tight on time or don’t want to run or hit the gym.  Plus, you get to feel super hard-core if someone enters the staircase and you’re hammering out stair sprints!stairs
  10. Maintain muscle and joint health. I don’t bring my foam roller on work trips (I wish!), but I do make sure to stretch, and fit in yoga or Barre3 when I can.  I do believe that taking care of your muscles and joints pays off multiples in the long run!

So tell me in the comments … do you travel often?  What are your healthy tips to maintain fitness while traveling?

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3 Comments

  1. Karen on June 26, 2013 at 10:53 am

    Good news! Your foam roller awaits you in the mountains !!!!

  2. Matt on June 4, 2015 at 7:16 pm

    Great post Megan! An extra tip from the traveling consultant…Trigger Point makes a hollow foam roller that I love for traveling! Stuff your workout clothes in and it doesn’t take up any more suitcase space!

    • Megan Lyons on August 3, 2015 at 6:37 pm

      Matt! I somehow missed your comment a few months ago, but thanks for the consultant tip! Those Trigger Point rollers are great! Hope all is well with you!

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