When it comes to packing for vacation, the last thing you people want to squeeze into your suitcases is workout gear. But if you want to squeeze into that itty-bitty bikini while you travel, then workout gear is a must. You can have your piña coladas and your beach body, too. Read on to enjoy the traveler's take on staying fit while traveling:
1. Jump Ropes
You don't have to be Rocky Balboa to appreciate a good jump rope routine. Lightweight and portable, jump ropes can easily pack in your suitcase or carry-on. Workout recommendation: HIIT it, baby. That is, high intensity interval training. 10 sets of 30 seconds on, 15 seconds off.
2. Mini Bands
These bands may be small in size, but they pack a big workout. For a lower body workout, wrap these bands around your ankles or around your knees. You can use them with squats, lunges, bridges, and almost every other movement. By placing the bands around your lower body, it makes you fire your glutes. So that bikini body you've been wanting? Right around the corner. Workout recommendation: 3 sets of 15 reps: Air Squats, Side-step lunges, Glute bridges.
3. Long Bands
After those long flights spent cramped in the back row, break out these longer bands to stretch out your body. They can also be used to workout. For instance, if you have a long layover at Barcelona airport and have exhausted writing in your travel journal, break out the bands and get a quick 10-minute workout in. Workout recommendation: 3 sets of 12: Upright rows, overhead presses, hamstring stretch.
4. Workout DVD's
Slip a workout DVD or two in your suitcase the next time you're on the road. These come in handy when you don't have the time or money to find a gym. Plus, isn't it always better when a trainer is telling you what to do? Recommendation: Try Insanity: The Asylum or P90X2 (shameless plug ... I'm in 3 of the workouts!) or a yoga DVD. Yoga by the pool doesn't sound so bad, huh?
5. Use Your Suitcase
When packing for a trip, you always want to pack things you can use more than once. What better piece of equipment than your suitcase? Whether it's 5 pounds or 15 pounds, you can use your suitcase to do many types of workouts. Workout recommendation: Bent-over rows with a suitcase!
6. Cute Workout Clothes
Packing light is all about versatility so it's time to pack some cute workout clothes. My personal favorite is Lululemon. They are one of the few companies that make outfits that look great for the gym and for life in general. These are also the perfect bottoms to wear on an airplane - you'll be comfortable while up in the air plus you'll feel good about yourself for packing your workout clothes! Get a pair in black so you can easily disguise stains.
A pure necessity in travel and in fitness, wear a pair of lightweight sneakers on the plane. If you pack them, you'll have no excuse not to use them. It will make it easier to navigate the friendly skies and you'll have your workout gear already on once you land. If you can't make time for a workout, walk a few laps around the airport.
8. Pack a Mini Foam Roller
Imagine having a personal massage therapist travel with you everywhere you go. After hours of sitting on an airplane, your body will tighten up and you'll need help working out those hip flexors, neck, and lower back. That's exactly what the GRID Mini Foam Roller does! Small enough to fit in your bag or you can loop it onto your carry-on!
9. Pack a Lacrosse Ball
Whether you're backpacking through Europe or trekking from meeting to meeting, your feet take a beating during travel. One of the most important parts about staying fit while traveling is recovering properly. Whether you had a long day walking the cobblestone streets of Como or your back is just tight from that overnight ferry, use a lacrosse ball to roll out your kinks. One of my favorite ways to use the lacrosse ball is under my foot. Ahhhh....a reward for hoofing it through the airport!
10. Pack a Water Bottle
Whether you're flying through the air or running on the ground, you need to stay hydrated! My personal favorite is the Vapur. This flexible water bottle can roll into a ball when it's empty and can easily clip onto your backpack with a carabineer.