12 Tips to Stay in Shape While Traveling

It's tough to stick to a routine when traveling. These easy tips will help make sure you're fitting in exercise and a healthy diet.

For those of us who travel often for work, we really can’t afford to use the excuse that “We’re on vacation.” If we constantly had that mentality, our health would start to suffer pretty quickly. The key to fitness for most of us, however, is routine, and traveling provides just the opposite. That’s why we’ve come up with 12 ways to stay in shape while traveling.



Side view of young woman doing exercising outdoors

Photo by: Youngoldman


Bring resistance bands. This lightweight and inexpensive gym equipment is perfect for travel. Build strength and get a full-body workout from the comfort of your hotel room. Turn on some guilty pleasure TV shows and get to work!

Eat your vegetables. This one’s easier than you think. If you always remember to include a side of vegetables with every meal, you’ll get your daily dose of vitamins and minerals without much effort. Having an omelet? Throw some spinach in there! Order a green smoothie mid-day. Pile your pizza high with vegetable toppings. When in doubt, order a side salad. 

Rent a bike. Tons of cities have bike-sharing programs now that allow you to easily and cheaply get around. In places that don't have these programs, find a rental company or even bring your own bike.

Girl riding bike on vacation in Costa Rica

Girl riding bike on vacation in Costa Rica

Bike riding in Costa Rica

Photo by: Jeremy Pawlowski

Jeremy Pawlowski

Walk whenever possible. Skip ride-sharing apps and public transportation when you can. You’ll get to know the city better this way, too.

Take the stairs. Why wait for the elevator when your legs work perfectly fine? If you’re really high up, take the stairs part of the way and the elevator the rest. 

Pack your own snacks in your carry-on bag. You’ll save money and calories by bringing your own snacks and skipping airport food. Use this strategy on road trips, too. 

TSA-Approved Snack

TSA-Approved Snack

Use a mason jar to transport veggies like carrots and celery. Wash out an old apple sauce container, add hummus or dressing and add to top of mason jar. Seal with lid.

Photo by: Laura James

Laura James

Save carbs and sweets for when it’s really worth it. Say no to mindless muffins and sub-par desserts. If your waiter tries to bring bread to the table before your meal, politely decline. There will be plenty of times when delicacies will be worth splurging on, but nine times out of ten, bread and candies just aren’t worth it.

Utilize the hotel pool. Unless you’re going on a beach vacay, you probably skip this hotel amenity, but swimming is an easy and relaxing way to burn calories and build muscle.

Hit the gym. Most hotels have fitness facilities, and many even have clean workout clothes and shoes you can rent!

Drink tons of H2O. Everybody knows you should drink plenty of water while flying, but often we forget to carry that notion into the rest of our trip. Bring a reusable water bottle with you and keep it full. Monitor caffeine intake, which can dehydrate you.

Water Bottle

Water Bottle

Don't forget to pack a BPA-free water bottle like this S'ip by S'well one in your beach bag to stay hydrated.

Photo by: Laura James

Laura James

Take it easy on the alcohol. Stay clear-headed while traveling and avoid empty calories by limiting the amount you drink. Celebrating is one thing, but remind yourself that alcohol is not usually part of a balanced diet.

Exercise like a local. Check out a local yoga studio or look up community fitness classes taking place in cool, public spaces. Many gyms offer free week trials, which is a great way to try different classes without breaking the bank.

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