When it comes to reaching your fitness goals, consistency is one of the most important elements. Your muscles don’t magically grow and the weight doesn’t disappear if you don’t put the work in. Now, there are obligations or certain events that occasionally prevent you from going to the gym, which is completely normal. Travel happens to be one thing that can interfere with your workout progress. Fortunately, there are easy ways to break a sweat during your travels without ever needing to enter a gym.
Travel is one of those things that takes the wind out of your fitness sails. At the same time, travel is necessary, as it helps you see the world and better connect with other cultures. Gaining a worldly perspective is sometimes more important than your muscle gains! Exercise is about more than your physical fitness, because it can help you clear your head and lower stress levels. Since traveling can induce a lot of stress and tension in the body, consider experimenting with the following exercises that don’t require equipment.
One-Arm Luggage Rows
Looking to engage your lats while vacationing without a gym or a pull-up bar? Use your backpack or carry-on as a weight and do some rows! Widen your stance so that your feet are about three feet apart. Point both of your feet to the left as you shift your body to face the left. Bend your left knee slightly and keep your right leg straight. Place your left hand just above your left knee for stability and make sure your torso is squared up over the left leg. With your right hand, grab your backpack or luggage and lift, engaging your right lat as you guide it back in a rowing motion. Once your right elbow is just beyond your back, return the bag to the ground. Complete 10-12 reps and then switch sides, completing a total of 3 sets.
As one of the most straightforward exercises that targets multiple muscle groups, planks should definitely belong to your travel fitness routine. Start on your hands and knees in a tabletop position, stacking your shoulders directly over your wrists and your hips directly over your knees. Step your feet back and come into a high plank. Engage your core and make sure that you don’t round your back or sag your body. Now, you can remain in a high plank, or you drop down to your forearms to intensify the plank. Hold the plank for 30-60 seconds and then rest for 30-60 seconds. Complete three to five times.
As long as you have a chair, bench, or bed frame that has an edge where you can comfortably put your hands, you can do tricep dips. Maybe you see a bench while walking down a cobblestone street in Spain. There’s an opportunity to do some tricep dips! Sit on the edge of the bench or chair with your hands gripping the edge on either side of you. Extend your legs out in front of you hip-distance apart with your heels touching the ground. Press into the palms of your hands to push up gently and slide forward just enough so that your back clears the edge when you dip. Lower yourself until your elbows are bent between 45-90 degrees and then push back up, engaging your triceps and pectorals. Complete three sets of 10-12 reps.
Lunges come in handy during your travels. They get you moving and help to increase your heart rate, all the while promoting circulation. Begin by standing tall with your feet hip-distance apart. Engage your core and take a big step forward with your right leg, shifting your weight forward so that your heel hits the floor first. Keep your back straight and lower your body until the right thigh is parallel to the floor. Be mindful to not let your right extend beyond your right toes. Engage your glutes and press through the right heel to return to the starting position. Repeat on the left leg and continue alternating for 30 seconds. Complete three 30-second reps, resting for one minute between each set.
Luggage Sumo Squats
Regular bodyweight squats are great, but if you want to up the ante, get down with these luggage sumo squats. Stand up straight with your feet about one foot wider than shoulder-width apart. Make sure your weighted bag is between your legs. Keep your weight in your heels and slowly squat down without leaning forward. Grab your bag, engage your glutes, and drive through your heels to return to the starting position. Continue repeating the motion, gently tapping the luggage on the ground at the bottom of each squat. Complete three sets of 10-12 reps, with or without your luggage as a weight.
These are five great exercises that can help you keep your body tone during your travels. Other notable movements include leg lifts, crunches, glute bridges, jumping jacks, push-ups, and wall sits.