Conrad Rangali, Maldives
How to Stay Healthy on Holiday
So, you’ve been on a pretty rigid health and fitness regime for the past six months and yet you really have reached burn out point. You book a holiday and every day it looms closer, you start to panic that you might not be able to maintain your regime whilst soaking up the sun, and Sangria. And of course you want to make the most out of every minute of your down time, but food is definitely going to be on your agenda and it’s starting to stress you out. And all you’d like to know is how to stay healthy whilst on holiday.
During a chat with Carly Rowena over Cider, Mac and Cheese and huge American Pizzas in Florida, we discussed the stress of keeping fit whilst away on holiday and how much it can affect someone’s anxiety towards the holiday they have booked as a relaxation method. And I realised I had never shared my thoughts on holidays, trips and healthy routines; especially as healthy routines and trips are two things Im rather fond on recently.
So here are my top tops when it comes to keeping yourself on track whilst enjoying every moment of your vacation.
Okay, it does depend on where you’re heading off to. If you’re a vegan or quite a fussy eater, you might be worried about whether the resort’s menus cater for anyone who doesn’t eat meat or fish. The chances are that you will be able to find what you’re looking for, just not in abundance. I don’t think I have ever seen a menu that didn’t include a vegetarian or vegan alternative. And if not, just ask for one. I’m sure they can make the pasta dish without the fish or meat and a vegetable alternative. If you want it, ask for it, as otherwise you will never know. And do you know what, unless you’re going to a country that doesn’t have a local store nearby, you can nip out and buy some food to keep in your hotel room if you’re really struggling. Depending on the sort of diet you are sticking to, if the resort is of a good enough quality, if you speak with them on arrival, I’m sure they will be more than happy to bear your requirements in mind.
If it’s your fitness regime you’re concerned about, why not take your routine outdoor and mix things up a bit, to suit the terrain, location and resort. Whilst you may be a gym lover, you could quite easily switch up your routine and try out running each day, sign up for yoga classes at the resort or try swimming every morning. You’ll still be keeping yourself in shape, just in a different way, and the chances are that your body will thank you for a little change in your routine. But this is all depending on whether your hotel doesn’t have a gym. The majority of good hotels do have gym facilities. The question is, how good they may be. I have seen so many laughable hotel gyms with two machines and a kettle-bell; but then, its better than nothing. Don’t worry, you will be find somewhere or some way to keep your fitness regime on form.
If the case is that you’re cutting out sugar or dairy, just don’t put yourself in a position where you may be tempted. America is a great place to really indulge, but you truly don’t have to. There are alternatives on the menu you could try instead, or just keep your eyes off of the dessert cabinet, sweet menu or cheese board. Try to stay as true to your usual routine as you possibly can, as you’ll only feel guiltier later on. I have put three pounds on over the last few weeks due to four long haul trips, and I’m kicking myself now for indulging in all of those mac and cheese portions. But then again, I unfortunately didn’t get the chance to work out, and if I had been exercising, I could have afforded to eat all of the naughty foods that I ate. Whereas now, its back to the gym I go. Hard. But remember, whilst you may be on holiday, and you feel you have the right to indulge, you do! Relax and enjoy yourself, take time off work, enjoy your partners company, and if you want to eat something naughty, then go for it. Just don’t use the excuse, ‘Im on Holiday’ every single time, as otherwise you will find yourself eating the hotel out of house and home. Decide which meals in particular you’re happier to indulge on, and leave the rest. Even if thats an extra bottle of wine. If you’ve enjoyed a great meal, perhaps you don’t need to drink another glass after all.
Decide how much you are willing to work harder, after your holiday. If you don’t want to lose all of your progress, choose a few treats and save the rest for another day.
Don’t tell yourself that you are only on holiday once and therefore you deserve to treat and treat and treat. When in fact, you’re probably going to be going away again soon, and eating so much now isn’t entirely necessary.
Decide whether your health and fitness are more important to you than the glass of wine or slice of cake. You could have had a calorific meal already and therefore, is that extra sugar or stodge really worth it for you?! If yes, then stick your face right in there and enjoy. But if not, and you’re actually satisfied by the delicious food you’ve already consumed, hold on the pudding.
Do you research before you go away and find the nearest local vegan, pescitarian, vegetarian or healthy option restaurants. And don’t be afraid to ask for alterations to your meal if you want to cut something out. Just don’t leave it until you get to your resort and decide it’s easier to just eat from your minibar.
And talking about the mini bar, just don’t give it a second glance. They get me every single time.
Find a new place to practice your gym routine and try to embrace a new setting. You might find you learn to love a new style of workout.
If you’re worried you won’t have time when you’re away, there is always time. Early in the morning generally, an hour before you would like to rise. Your whole body and mindset will be set for the day and you won’t feel guilty later on; especially if you’re tucking into the chocolate.
These are just my main concerns and thoughts when it comes to healthy routines and holidays, but I would love to know yours. How do you keep yourself healthy on your holiday and what would you recommend to anyone who is anxious?