When you’re home, you’ve got your routine down pat: morning yoga, breakfast smoothie, work, after work climb sesh, intricately prepared plate of delicious (but healthy!) food, meditate, get some ZZZs. But when you travel, all of that inevitably gets thrown into a limbo. Sure, you’d like to do morning yoga, but the bus to the Cliffs of Moher leaves at 4:30 am and you went on a pub crawl last night so you need all the sleep you can get. Oops. Luckily, there are plenty of doable ways to stay healthy and fit in everything you want to do while you’re abroad.
Do Some Research About Your Destination
How can you expect yourself to stick to your health preferences if you don’t even know much about the place you’ll be visiting? If you know that certain things make your stomach upset or that you get super grumpy if you don’t go on a morning run, put in the extra time to research how your destination can accommodate these specifications. Say you’re gluten free and traveling to Italy — you might think you’ll be up a creek without a paddle. But a little research shows that Italians are actually quite aware of and accommodating to gluten-free diets — and have been for centuries. The more you know.
Plan, Plan, Plan (and Plan Some More)
Make a list of the things from your daily routine that you’d really like to stick to when you’re traveling. If you don’t want to forgo your daily morning yoga routine, plan accordingly. That means you probably won’t want to be in a shared room in a hostel, but you will want to plan activities at least two hours after you plan to wake up, and hearty breakfasts probably won’t pair well with your downward dog. Whatever the activity is that you want to maintain, determine that first then plan your trip around that.
Kill Two Birds With One Stone
Think about it: when you take a walking tour, you get to walk around all day (without slugging down a tempting litre of beer) and learn a ton about the city you’re in. If exercise is a huge part of your daily healthy routine at home, you should look into how you can experience the place you’re visiting in a way that also incorporates things like walking, swimming, biking, hiking, and more. If food is a huge part of the culture, taking a cooking class is a great way to sample the local fare in proper portions and over a long period of time — plus you learn a new skill, the coolest souvenir you can bring home that won’t take up any space in your luggage!
Bring Some Snacks With You
We’re not suggesting eating a granola bar for every meal, but if you’re worried about going overboard in a new country with sugary delicacies, bring a couple of healthy and filling snacks to tide you over from meal to meal. Of course, we think you should indulge in a treat or two while you’re on your trip, but we completely understand what it’s like when you’re hot and hangry and full of carbs in Rome and gelato seems like the only sensible option. For moments like those, we wish we’d had a granola bar to tide us over ’till our spaghetti alla carbanara for dinner.
Give Yourself a Break
While we applaud you, brave traveler, for wanting to maintain a healthy lifestyle on the road, we also realize that sometimes the crepes (and wine and cheese and croissants) have too much of a siren’s call. Trust us, we’ve been there. If you find that you’ve completely flouted your routine that you promised yourself you’d stick to, give yourself a break. We’re all human. Culture-loving, croissant-chomping, wine-guzzling humans. And, hey, there’s always tomorrow.
Do you have any foolproof ways to maintain your healthy lifestyle while traveling? Let us know in the comments!