Keep Fit While Traveling

Traveling and going on a vacation is sheer fun! Wandering around in new places, meeting friends and new people, binging on food, and yes, letting go of the life back home for a while, all make traveling a cherished experience. Also on a vacation, you may sometimes overexert yourself, and soon after, be left to the confines of your cozy hotel room. As a result the routine goes haywire, and after the holiday – you end up looking plump and tired, and do not keep fit. The idea behind writing this article is to help you to compensate for not attending your gym or doing regular fitness activities during the vacation. I ensure that after you return from the vacation, your shape or stamina won’t change a bit, in fact you will look leaner and feel fitter. Let’s get started now.

Keeping Fit While You Travel

Being fit has more to it than having a good physique. To put it in simple words, fitness is more about having a healthy body and mind. When you are fit, you have the enthusiasm and the energy to do new things, and you feel energetic even after going through physical stress. Thus fitness is very essential during the vacation period too, because during traveling you have to strain your body a lot. To help you, I have compiled some tips. Sticking to these golden rules will ensure that you stay fit while traveling. The rules demand total dedication and a few sacrifices for them to work, read ’em all.

1. Search for options to keep yourself fit
Being fit is a matter of personal choice, place has no consideration. To cater to fitness freaks, most of the hotels offer facilities like a swimming pool or gymnasium. Inquire about such facilities, and benefit from them. Even if there is no such facility offered at the place you stay, you can run or jog, or exercise in the room itself. Even doing 45 minutes of physical activity daily is enough and it keeps us refreshed all day long. If it is your choice to select the vacation spot, choose a place that can get you to do some physical form of exercise like rock climbing or kayaking.

2. Hydrate yourself, and eat nutritious food
Let water be your favorite beverage this holiday season. Do I need to mention here why drinking water is important? It will keep you fuller for a long period of time. Moreover, it is a fact that after drinking artificially sweetened beverages you crave for more sweet. So keep a bottle of water with you always, while you are traveling. Alternatively, you can indulge in some refreshing and healthy drinks like fruit juices too. Also, always carry nuts in your bag that are both nutritious and filling.
3. Don’t let your food temptations take control of you
Traveling means you are at a new place, which also means there are new joints and new delicacies to try. Your friends coax you to try food joints at their place, and you relent. So there you are gorging on a cheese chicken pizza, with chocolate mousse cake on the other plate. I sincerely hope you don’t have to go through this. If you aim at fitness, fattening food is a strict no-no (especially if you are not working out). If you don’t find anything healthy to eat, you should compensate eating unhealthy food by working out. Eating outside eatables daily is also not good for your stomach, and can wreak havoc on your digestive system. This also gives rise to a headache and stomach ailments. Also, avoid eating desserts, and if possible share it with someone. Take a long walk, jog, or play a game, just make sure you sweat it out in some way.
4. Stay away from binge drinking
That beer belly you hate is an outcome of drinking too much. A vacation is somewhat synonymous with excessive drinking and daily hangovers. So for a healthy heart and cardiovascular health, you should stay away from excessive drinking. Doing everything in moderation, and learning to say no is the key to healthy living. Drink moderately where ever you are, at home or on a vacation.
5. Read the following tips
– Use the stairs instead of the elevators, especially in the hotel. This is one way to keep fit and moving.
– Don’t forget to take your gym clothes and shoes; let them travel with you always.
– Always keep some healthy food in your bag, this will especially come in handy when you run out of healthy food choices at the airport or any other place.
– Now comes the oft-repeated tip – eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a queen, and dinner like a beggar. You should stick to this fitness rule even during a vacation.
– Keep your fitness level in check. Devices like a pedometer, glucometer, sphygmomanometer etc., can help you keep a check on your fitness.
– Last but not the least, don’t spoil your holiday in repentance if you eat unhealthy food. Enjoy your food, eat slowly, just make sure you have done enough physical activity at the end of the day.
Traveling or vacation is meant for enjoyment, and you must enjoy it too. But like I say, fitness comes first, and you would also not like to spoil the hard work you put in the gym, before that holiday. I would like to conclude by saying, when you are on a holiday, enjoy, however, make sure you follow a healthy routine too.

Things You Should Never Do While Trying to Get in Shape

Exercising and gorging food will never help lose weight
Healthy weight loss is achieved by following a healthy diet, increasing your level of physical activity, and adopting good lifestyle habits. Period. But some lack the motivation or patience to follow healthy techniques to lose weight. Those desperately looking to get in shape will resort to any ‘quick’ method available. They may not realize that these methods can put their overall health at risk.

Here are the common myths or wrong weight loss methods that should be avoided. Make sure you do not make these mistakes when trying to lose weight.

Relying on Packaged ‘Diet’ Food

Nowadays, a lot of prepackaged diet meals are available in the market (Pure Package, Diet to Go). Here, you get a pre-designed packed box of breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner every day. As these foods contain less amounts of calories, they are claimed to be effective. However, what people are unaware of is that these foods contain preservatives, sugar, and other additives. Secondly, drastically cutting down on calories can slow down your metabolism. Products like diet soda contains artificial sweeteners and caffeine, which does more harm to the body than good. Substituting a balanced and nutritious meal with anything marked ‘diet’ or ‘fat-free’ food is actually not healthy. Consuming foods with high sugar can lead to diabetes and kidney damage, whereas, consuming foods with high amounts of sodium can lead to hypertension. Packaged or anything coming in a box is not healthy. It may be convenient, but the additives in these foods will prevent you from losing weight, and is not healthy either.

Eating Fat-Free Food

What most of us are unaware about is that fat-free does not necessarily mean low in calories. It’s true that consuming less fats can help you get in shape sooner, but packaged ‘fat-free’ foods are loaded with carbohydrates and sugar, and hence, are high in calories. Secondly, low fat foods like dried fruits, nuts, beans, dairy, packaged yogurt, salad dressings, pretzels, etc., contain high amounts of calories. For example, fruit juices (fresh as well as packaged ones) contain no fat, but have high calories. Therefore, consuming more than 1 glass of fruit juice will not help in warding off excess weight, due to the high caloric intake.

Relying on a Liquid Diet

To rely only on fruit and vegetable juice to lose weight is a wrong method, for two reasons. Firstly, by substituting your meal with only juice, you decrease the calorie intake drastically. It will help lose weight, but it can cause health problems like lack of energy, nutritional deficiency, headaches, stomach disorders, etc. We require carbohydrates and proteins to gain energy. Secondly, if you consume fruit or vegetable juices, but do not cut down on their portion sizes, you may still gain weight because of the high calorie content (read the aforementioned ‘Eating Fat-Free Food’). Watching your portions, following a balanced diet, and exercising to burn off excess calories, is the best way to be healthy and fit.

Not Cutting Down on Food Intake

Exercise plays an important role in maintaining healthy weight. It is true that exercise helps burn extra calories, but it will probably not help you much if you do not take care of your diet by reducing your calorie intake. If you believe you can exercise every day and eat to your heart’s content, you are mistaken. For healthy weight loss, you need to burn more calories than you consume. So, you need to limit the intake of food, else, the amount of calories consumed will exceed those burnt off. Now, those sweating out for hours together at the gym, did you know that extreme exercising is also linked to premature aging?

Using Sauna Suits or Rubber Belts

You may come across many products that claim to promote quick weight loss, like rubber belts, sauna suits, etc. If you wish to get rid of excess weight, you need to burn off fat. Sauna does not help burn fat, it just helps in losing water weight. You will regain weight as soon as you replenish your lost fluids by drinking water. Sauna suits induce excessive sweating, which can have harmful side effects like severe dehydration, loss of electrolytes, heatstroke, etc. Using a sauna suit is not a safe way to lose weight.

Having Time-Based Meal Plans

A diet that suggests you to follow a rigid meal plan is not a practical approach to weight loss. In the present day lifestyle, it is impossible to follow a rigid time-based meal plan, unless, of course, you are waited on hand and foot. If your diet plan says not to have meals after 6pm, it may not be possible every day, as you are working, have chores to fulfill, etc. Having specific set of foods at specific times is impractical and difficult. In fact, eating healthy snacks when hungry can boost your metabolism. Remember, eating when hungry, and only so much as to suppress your hunger, is the correct way to go.

Believing Skinny is Fit

Weight loss is usually recommended to those who are overweight or have a BMI higher than normal. However, once you get rid of the unwanted fat, you should aim to maintain that, and stop the unwanted fat from returning. Remember, being skinny does not mean you are fit or healthy. In most of the cases, being skinny is associated with fasting and starving, which leads to health problems like nutritional deficiency, headaches, stomach disorders, dehydration, etc. A skinny person can be as unhealthy as an overweight person due to wrong food and lifestyle habits. Compromising on your food and following crazy diets can be harmful. Being underweight takes a toll on your overall health, and is commonly associated with malnutrition, weak immune system, disorders of the skin, hair, stomach, etc.

Skipping Exercise

As mentioned above, it is a myth that only extensive exercising or strength training in the gym helps lose weight. Although there is no doubt that these exercises are effective, there is no denying the fact that other exercise types like aerobic exercises, household chores (lawn mowing, washing the car, scrubbing), or other daily physical activities like climbing the stairs, are also equally effective. Walking, running, jogging, swimming, cycling, etc. (along with good food habits), help in losing and maintaining proper body weight. A regular exercise regime combined with a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle habits is the ideal way to get in shape.

Starving Yourself
Cutting down on fatty and high-calorie foods is recommended in every weight loss plan. But some take it to another level, forget the word ‘wrong’ foods, and go on a near-death starvation diet. Our body needs food to keep going, to gain energy, and also to perform different functions in the body. Starvation deprives the body of its fuel. Along with fat loss, starvation also causes muscle loss. Secondly, as your body starts conserving energy, the metabolism slows down drastically, and fewer calories are burnt. This means, even when you switch to a healthy diet later on, you will have trouble burning calories. Did you know that the effects of starvation can take nearly a year to reverse completely?

Having Diet Pills/Drugs
Diet pills and drugs, like appetite suppressants, magic pills, laxatives, purgatives, etc., are used by some dieters to get in shape quickly. Many manufacturers claim weight loss with these pills, sans diet or exercise. Although this may appear very convenient and easy, it is not safe. Many diet pills contain large amounts of caffeine or appetite suppressants that will never make you feel hungry. There are no immediate effects of these diet pills, except a few side effects like anxiety, headaches, fatigue, lethargy, etc. But these pills are very addictive, and there are chances of developing a tolerance for the same. You will resume the lost weight after stopping the pills, if you do not follow a proper diet and exercise routine.

Sometimes, people adopt extreme weight loss methods like starvation or the tapeworm pills method mentioned above. It is not only dangerous but can have serious long-term health hazards. If you come across any bizzare or unconventional diet or weight loss tips, make sure you have detailed information about all its pros and cons, and after effects. If in doubt, it is always recommended to consult a doctor or a certified nutritionist before commencing any weight loss routine.

It is possible to lose weight with healthy methods. Following are the things you can do to achieve an ideal weight and maintain it.

What To Do

1. Follow healthy food habits.
2. Consult a nutritionist and understand the difference between healthy and unhealthy food.
3. Stop binging and emotional eating.
4. Do not skip meals. But, watch your portions.
5. Exercise regularly for 20-30 minutes every day.
6. Be physically active.
7. Follow a practical weight loss plan.
8. Continue maintaining a healthy lifestyle even after you lose weight.
9. Try to reduce stress.
10. Stay focused and motivated.

Remember a simple principle – as excess weight is not gained overnight, it cannot be lost in a short time either. Give yourself some time. Although healthy methods may take a bit longer to work, they are more effective, and definitely beneficial in the long term.