There’s nothing worse than travelling the world, visiting beautiful beaches and not feeling body confident. We’ve all done the emergency ‘beach body’ thing before a two-week holiday, which is mainly unsuccessful and usually way too last minute. But what if you’re always on holiday… like, for a year?
Before I embarked on my travels I started a little fitness kick to make sure my body was prepared for the backpacker’s life. I didn’t want low fitness levels or lack of body confidence to hold me back from doing anything – whether that’s climbing a mountain or strutting my stuff on a beach. While I wasn’t striving for a Victoria’s Secret Angel bod, I did want to feel strong and capable.
Getting fit and achieving a toned body without a gym, large budget or a well-stocked fridge is hard, I admit, but there are a few tips you can follow to keep your bod looking beach-ready while travelling.
1. Er, swim
I’m always surprised by the amount of people who bake on a beach all day and never get in the sea! It’s right there next to the sand and it’s awesome. I’m a water-baby admittedly, but swimming in the sea is one of life’s pleasures. Swimming for 30 mins burns over 300 cals, and that’s just a leisurely breaststroke – so dive in!
Sometimes we confuse thirst with hunger, then eat and still feel thirsty which we then confuse for hunger again. If you feel peckish while on the go – buy a bottle of water first to see if actually what you needed was a good drink.
3. Walk this way
If you’re not a natural walker then get used to it when travelling, at the end of the day, you have no job, no home to get back to at the end of the day, no TiVo waiting for you in the evenings so time is plentiful. Learn to enjoy walking – it’s fantastic exercise and serves a purpose, best of all it’s free and it’s easy, anyone can do it.
4. Eat like a local
It can be tempting while travelling to stick to the foods you know (hey McDonalds New Delhi) or fattening convenience or packaged foods. Junk food is cheap, but it’s bad for you (news flash of the century). Local street food is cheap too, but it’s often nutritious and healthy. Just use your noodle, lol, and eat lots of veggies, fish and lean meats and avoid chips, processed meats and lots of bread. Try something new and you might love it!
5. Set aside 15 mins
Each day try and set aside 15 mins to do a little toning routine. It can be hard when you don’t know where you’ll be from one day to the next or you don’t have privacy but you’ll work it out and it’s worth it. Every morning I try to do the following; 25 Sit ups, 25 Crunches, 25 Oblique Sit ups, 25 Squats, 25 Donkey kicks, 5 mins of ‘wind-milling’ my arms. It’s easy, quick and keeps my bod looking toned for the beach.
6. Try something new!
You’re in a different country – get out of your comfort zone. Whether that’s hiking, roller-blading, diving or dancing. Not only are these activities fun and memorable but they’ll burn a ton of calories too. You won’t even notice you’re working out if you’re salsa dancing with the locals in Rio or climbing to the top of a mountain to be greeted by a breath-taking view.
Oh, and you can squat anywhere and everywhere… seriously. My butt in that photo = the product of random beach squat sessions.