David Buer, the fitness trainer for Transform YOU, a free 12-week weight-loss program on Dr. Oz’s Sharecare website, offers tips on how stay in shape while you travel.
Most people who get regular exercise tend to have go-to workouts, whether that’s gym sessions, yoga classes or fitness DVDs. But when we travel — from short business trips to weeklong vacations — exercise often fails to get packed in the carry-on. That’s a mistake: Being active daily isn’t just about looking great, but also about protecting yourself from a multitude of health issues.
So, the next time you’re on the road, be sure to make time daily for a walk, run or few reps in the gym. If you prefer exercise videos, all you need is your smartphone to do my simple, safe and effective routines for Transform YOU, Sharecare’s free 12-week weight-loss program. Check out this video to see Dr. Oz and me demonstrating some of those moves.
Exercise keeps your metabolism revved up and burning fat around the clock, which is great since we tend to indulge a little more than usual when we travel. There’s nothing wrong with that. We just don’t want all the hard work you put in at home to go down the drain when you’re away.
For more ways to stay active when you’re on the road — starting with a workout inspired by Transform YOU — check out these five fitness strategies for nearly every type of traveler. And because we care about high-end hotels almost as much as we do our heart rate, we’ve included a handful of health-conscious properties worth checking into as well.
The Busy Bee
Are your trips more jam-packed than your everyday life? If so, here’s a simple way to get in your exercise: Wake up 15 minutes early and do this routine called the Hotel Room Fat-Burning Total Body Circuit: 1. Hold the plank position for three seconds. Repeat 15 times; 2. Get in the floor bridge position and hold for three seconds. Repeat 15 times; 3. Do as many push-ups as you can, stopping two to three reps short of failure (when muscles momentarily weaken). It’s okay to do a modified version on your knees; 4. Do some reverse lunges by stepping back with your right leg and lowering until your left knee is bent at 90 degrees. Return to start and switch legs; 5. Next is the incline mountain climber, where you place your hands on a countertop and get in push-up position. Run in place for 30 seconds; 6. Finally, rest for one or two minutes and repeat. If it’s easy, make things more challenging by reducing the amount of time you rest between exercises and circuits.
Where to Work Out: Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village. Should a tight schedule prevent you from experiencing the Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star hotel’s 16,000-square-foot gem of a fitness center (it even has its own Pilates reformer), your generously sized room (units range from 450 to 40,000 square feet) is more than capable of inspiring some movement. Floor-to-ceiling windows at the SoCal property offer just the right light and verdant landscapes to keep you motivated (try to nab one of the rooms with a waterfall view).
Do one physical activity every day that isn’t available back at home — or something that you simply don’t have time to do. Try zip lining, rock climbing, whitewater rafting, horseback riding or a city walking tour.
Where to Work Out: The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel. If you always dreamed of surfing (or, if you wanted to get back on a board), this sun-splashed Four-Star hotel offers just the experience for you. The surfing excursion includes transportation to and from the water, two hours of paddling techniques and ocean awareness, a full-body workout and enough memories for a lifetime.
Don’t leave home without checking out ways to exercise at your final destination. Are you staying at a beach hotel? Find out if there are activities that will put you on the sand. Going to be at a downtown property close to your conference? Ask if there are nearby trails or local gyms with day passes.
Where to Work Out: The Breakers Palm Beach. When you call this Four-Star Floridian palace, be sure to inquire about the progress of Ocean Fitness, the brand-new workout facility slated for an early December 2014 opening. Flexing its muscle as an indoor-outdoor venue that will have something for everyone — 45 rotating weekly classes, the latest cardio equipment and a 1,700-square-foot oceanfront terrace are just some of the promised features — the new gym will be more than twice the size of the previous one.
The Sun Worshipper
Every hour you’re at the pool or on the beach, slap on some sunscreen and go for a 10-minute swim or walk just to give the body a bit of relief from the rays.
Where to Work Out: Dorado Beach, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve. Though the naturally lit, fully equipped gym at this two-year-old hotel is tempting, we know you’ll want to exercise your right to lounge along the sparkling beach. But rather than merely catch up on your e-reader during your visit, go on an eco-adventure (snorkeling, kayaking and more) with Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ambassadors of the Environment program or get lost on the 11-mile Rockefeller Nature Trail.
The Road Tripper
Don’t drive from point A to point B without stretching your legs with a few detours. Find a state park along the way and go on a short hike. No parks? Challenge your family to mini races at rest stops, and be sure to include a short warm-up and cool down.
Where to Work Out: Four Seasons Hotel Toronto. If you’re in town on business, point A is probably your room at the Five-Star property while point B is likely the office. If you ever lift your head from that can’t-wait email on your iPhone, you’ll realize that the pedestrian-friendly suburb of Yorkville is loaded with lush detours such as Ramsden Park and Village of Yorkville Park (the excellent concierge will show you the way).