We have all seen the bodies of people who travel constantly for a living – truck drivers and traveling salesmen are not famous for their superb fitness, generally speaking. Occasionally, an individual stands out – someone who is on the road constantly yet somehow manages to stay in really good shape. With a little thought, planning, and determination, anyone can maintain a healthy lifestyle on the road. The areas to consider are:
How a person exercises depends on his or her fitness goals. For someone wanting to maintain Olympic level fitness, a well-equipped gym and a great deal of free time is usually necessary. Luckily, for someone who wants to simply maintain a healthy level of fitness, it is relatively simple to do so.
The biggest key to perpetual fitness is consistency. When on the road, establish an exercise routine that can be religiously followed. The best time to perform physical exercise is shortly after waking. This is great for a busy person because a routine can enable a person to exercise without adding extra showers and changes of clothes or difficult to schedule breaks during the workday. Additionally, exercise increases the metabolism for hours afterward. Done before going to bed, this can result in less restful sleep. Done first thing in the morning, it can kick the body’s calorie burning ability into a higher gear for much of the day.
For an on-the-road exercise regime, simple is best. A couple of exercise videos and/or small, easily packed equipment can turn any hotel room into a home gym. 75 years ago, most people started the day with calisthenics. A few minutes each morning of aerobic activity, along with some resistance exercises like pushups, sit-ups, and lunges to maintain muscle strength and tone can be simply added to even the busiest schedules at the low cost of waking up a little earlier.
For anyone who wants to target specific areas of the body for strength and tone, a small pair of dumbells or resistance bands of some sort can add resistance to the exercise without adding much weight to luggage. For those who choose to commit to “guerrilla workouts”, a small piece of luggage makes a pretty good dumbell.
After exercise, diet is the biggest contributor to people being in poor physical shape. This is even more of an issue for those on the road who often need something quick and convenient to eat. Add snacking in front of the television because you have nothing to do in the strange setting, and it is a formula for flab.
The best defence against a poor diet is planning ahead. Make the time for a quick trip to the local grocery store and stock up on healthy foods and snacks. Putting together a turkey sandwich from your hotel fridge is cheaper, just as fast, and far healthier than hitting the drive through.
In this discussion, lifestyle changes are about making decisions that add exercise to your daily routine without disrupting it. Requesting a room on the second floor adds several flights of stairs to your daily activity. Parking at the back of the parking lot instead of cruising around seeking a doorside spot adds an extra walk and probably will save time in the bargain.
Being on the road does not necessarily mean being out of shape. With just a little planning, even the busiest traveller can find a healthy balance.