Travel and Wellness

Travel and Wellness

My birthday is on Wednesday, and I’m super excited to head to Charleston, South Carolina next weekend to celebrate!

(Hence that mouth-watering pecan pie photo that compelled you all to clickety-click!)

I thought it fitting to touch on what wellness looks like when traveling; enjoy the read!

It’s pretty safe to say that most of us have seen the occasional article about how to stay on track wellness-wise while traveling, and there are some great ideas out there.  However, yet again, I’m compelled to point out that

Wellness is Individual.

Personally, I’m pretty strict with my eating and workout routines at home, and I don’t eat out often; so when I travel, it gives me a chance to practice being “normal” since I affectionately call myself “a little crazy” where my regimented eating and exercise habits are concerned.  If you’ve read my book All In, you know that I had a serious scuffle with anorexia nervosa as a teenager, and those tendencies always linger in the background.  While I’ve had a handle on it for a couple of decades now, I have to remain very aware of when I’m getting “a little too crazy” with the food/exercise stuff.

That said – for me – using my vacation time (once or twice a year) to let go a little is actually very good for my body AND my mindset.  It “proves” to me that it’s okay to just BE and ENJOY… to do what feels good instead of putting myself through bootcamp per usual.

MY version of fitness on vacation:

I’m active and curious by nature, so I find myself walking and exploring quite a lot when I go to a new place.  I’m also generally excited about life and new experiences, so I might find myself running around at the beach, going dancing, or doing something else active.

MY version of eating on vacation:

I love to try fancy, delicious, regional cuisine… and so I do.  But I don’t eat the whole restaurant!

The outcome of MY vacation wellness choices:

I can’t recall a single vacation where I gained weight or something catastrophic happened because I skipped the gym and opted for a stroll around the local park instead.  Imagine!  I’ve found what works for me, what makes me feel free, refreshed, and happy.  But remember, I mentioned that I only travel a couple of times per year, and only for 2-5 days at a time... so, while loosening the reigns a bit is beneficial for MY body and MY state of mind, it’s also a very small percentage of the year.  And while I do indulge in a few travel treats, I don’t overindulge.  Good food is a special part of an experience, but it’s not THE WHOLE experience!

YOUR vacation wellness choices:

If you tend to chill by the pool all day on vacation, your version of fitness on vacation should be different than mine.  You may want to throw in a daily jog, swim, or yoga session to be sure and keep your bod moving.

If you tend to overindulge food-wise (and/or drink-wise!), your version of eating on vacation should be different than mine.  Maybe keep healthy snacks on-hand or scope out healthy local restaurants in advance.

If you travel frequently for work, if your vacations are weeks-long, or if you tend to fall off the wagon wellness-wise while away from home… you’ll want to hit up those wellness-while-traveling tips (hey, I have a few below for you!).  Don’t use travel as an excuse to be lazy, stuff yourself silly, or sucker-punch your liver.  And it’s worth mentioning again,

Wellness is individual.

So, take the opportunity to get real with yourself and figure out what works for YOU.


Wellness Travel Tips

1.       Hydrate!

That means water, friends 😉

2.       Vitamins!

Keep your immune system on point with your daily vitamins, as travel can wear you down, even if it’s fun.  Of course there’s also the fab air and confined space on the plane… ick!

3.       Eat!

Do you require an opportunity to relax a bit with eating?  Or do you need to keep yourself accountable with a food journal?  Be honest and move forward with what YOUR individual needs are.

4.       Move!

Casual strolls, beach volleyball, bicycling around town, or the hotel fitness center… do whatever YOU determine that YOU need.  Also, if you’re flying or driving for extended periods of time, get up and walk around at least once per hour to keep that blood flowing (just say no to DVTs!).

5.       Breathe!

Travel for work can be exhausting, and travel for fun can be jam-packed.  So be sure to take a few minutes each day to breathe, get out in nature, re-connect with yourself, meditate, journal, etc.  Get grounded and get the most out of your trip!

6.       Sleep!

Again, travel can be tough on the bod, so make sure you get your 7-9 hours each night, and maybe grab a nap if you’re so inclined!

7.       Commit!

Make a commitment to yourself to stay healthy on your trip, whether that looks like a few treats and casual fitness or staying on track with your usual routines.

8.       Enjoy!

Last but certainly not least:  HAVE FUN!!!!  Enjoy your vacation!  If you’re on a work trip, take in some local scenery or visit a neighborhood hot spot… make the most of your time in a different town!

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Until Next Week, Be Well and Be Good!