Health and Travel
We all know that vacations are time for indulging, which may mean cheating on your diet, getting off track with your exercise routine or drinking a bit more than you normally do. This is not too big of a deal if it is for a week or two, but for you travelers out there who are going to be on the road for months or possibly longer, the ‘’I’m on vacation’’ excuse really will not fly for totally neglecting your health. As I write this, I have been on the road for more than 20 months and have gone through some periods where I fell into this excuse, but I soon realized that I needed to change my ways if I wanted to maintain the healthy lifestyle that I did when I was home. Here are some tips that have worked for me.
Leave Yourself Room for the Good Stuff
One of the best parts about traveling is eating out a lot, especially when you are traveling in areas where you can get an awesome meal for a fraction of the price of what you would pay for the same food at home. I am currently in Southeast Asia and generally, it is very inexpensive to eat out here and I do it frequently, much more frequently than I do at home. For the most part, I order healthy items and I like to frequent pure vegetarian restaurants, but I also love Italian food and other indulgent items. But, I know that if I want to eat this food more frequently, I need to find a way to balance out my calories so that I am still in a healthy range.
This is why I typically prepare at least one meal at home when I am staying somewhere longer term or commit to eating a really healthy light lunch when I am staying in hotels, such as a Buddhist vegetarian establishment. I am thinner now than I have been in years even though I have probably indulged in richer foods more than I have in years and I believe a big reason for this is because I have maintained my commitment to eating healthy as much as I can even though I could easily eat this type of food all the time on the cheap.
Walk It or Bike It As Much as You Can
When faced with cheap transportation options at every turn, it can be tempting to utilize them every time you step out of the door, especially when you are somewhere hot and humid. But, if you are like most people traveling long-term, being more active in every day life is your key to staying in shape since you are probably not joining a gym or taking part in any formal exercise classes. Again, thinner than I have been in years and all I do is make sure to keep active most days; I opt for walking instead of the taxi a majority of the time; I rent a bicycle to handle longer distances when feasible. Even if I am not in total walking distance of a place, I try to walk at least part of the way. In Ubud, Bali for instance, I rented a motorbike since I was a bit far from the main part of town, but to keep active, I would park the bike a distance from where I was going and would walk there and walk back to the bike instead of driving directly to my destination. You would be surprised how easy it is to stay fit by simply walking more—it adds up and is one of the easiest ways to stay healthy while traveling.
Kelli Cooper is a freelance writer who spends extensive time traveling internationally and enjoys sharing tips; if you are thinking about visiting Canada, follow the link to learn more about health insurance options available to you from Canadian carriers.