Vacation is an opportunity to rest, reset, and rejuvenate. It is a time your both your mind and body to recover from the daily stresses of your life. Rest and recover, however does not translate as sit on your butt all day drinking sugary drinks and eating whatever your taste buds desire. If you treat vacation like it’s a freedom from all rules and routines you will end up doing more damage than rejuvenation. So how do you stay on track with your health when you want to be sitting on your butt drinking strawberry daiquiris on the beach and somebody else is preparing your meals?
WITH THESE THREE FOCUSES:
1. KEEP MOVING
Vacation is absolutely going to be a break from your regular fitness routine. Your body needs this to help it recover, especially if you normally have a 5+ day a week high intensity regimen. But physical rest and recovery doesn’t translate to couch potato. You should still find a way to move every day. Take advantage of the new scenery and opt for a long walk or a hike. Vacation is a great time to try new sports because we often have access to things we don’t typically see in our home towns. Here are a few options you might consider: rent a kayak, sign up for a surf lesson, horseback riding, ropes courses, golfing, beach volleyball.
The beach is a great setting for a long walk, swim, or surf lesson.
It’s easy to be diligent in our daily lives and track our water consumption but this gets a bit tougher when we travel or vacation. Starting with getting to our actual destination, we either limit our water intake so we don’t have to make frequent stops in the car or are limited by that tiny cup of ice water they give you on the plane. ALWAYS pack a large water bottle with you and refill it frequently. If you are traveling by plane fill it up after security and finish it before you land. If you are on a long flight some flight attendants will give you a whole bottle if you ask nicely. If not then ask for frequent refills. Starting your trip off dehydrated sets the tone for your week.
3. PRIORITIZE PLANTS
After a trip, whether I was away for a week or a weekend I am always craving vegetables. Meals out are never balanced in the same way we balance them at home. We often indulge in more starchy and sugary foods like pancakes and ice cream while away. And there is nothing wrong with these vacation treats as long as we balance them out with the vitamins, minerals, and fiber present in vegetables and fruits. Be sure that your meal includes something green when you order. If it doesn’t order an additional side or swap the potatoes for a salad or the vegetable of the day. Raw vegetables make a great plane or beach snack. Be sure to get vegetables at least twice a day. Your gut will thank you.
Stopping at the local grocery store for some nutritious snacks and water will keep your gut happy.
To recap, if we take vacation as a week to live as a drive-thru eating couch potato, our bodies will not recover or rejuvenate. The body will need days or even weeks to recover and reset from a week of sedentary activities and a diet rich in sugar. Vacation becomes the opposite of what it should be if we throw our health out the window. Stay active. Drink more water. Eat your greens.