We’ve all come home from a vacation feeling like a total unhealthy slob after days and eating and drinking, then it takes the same length of time AS the vacation (or longer!) to get back on track. But it doesn’t have to be like that! Don’t worry–I’m not suggesting you plan out a workout regime and map out every Whole Foods in the area prior to leaving town, but I do think that a successful vacay should include some healthy activity and control so coming home isn’t more depressing than the excitement of getting out of town.
On a recent trip to Miami/South Beach, I documented some easy and fun ways to #MakeHealthyHappen when you’re traveling.
Of course, I found a Flywheel Sports (they’re in so many cities now), but even if spin isn’t your thing (say it ain’t so!), you’re sure to find an ass-kicking, local boutique fitness studio via Facebook, a concierge, or a quick Google search. And most offer the first class free anyway! (Didn’t you just move to town and need to find a new yoga studio? Wink wink.) PLUS, we all know sweating is a great way to kick a hangover and start the day fresh (just remember to stay hydrated).
3. Say yes to the drinks, but hell no to the fries! This is my little “Game Of Choices” I play with indulgences; it’s a great way to enjoy something that makes you happy AND feel good about yourself at the same time! For example, my lunch choice was a burger without the bun or fries (pictured are zucchini fries I didn’t eat because they didn’t rock my world).
I chose no bun and passed on the fries because I wanted to sip on an ice cold cocktail on the patio and get some frozen yogurt on my bike ride back to the hotel. Bun or drink? Drink (duh). Fries or fro-yo? Fro-yo. It felt good to treat myself because I had the willpower to say no to other things (even when I wanted it all).
4. Don’t eat out every meal just because you’re on vacation. Find a local grocery or farmers market and pick up fruits, cheeses, meats, etc. to create a picnic to eat on the beach, at the pool, or bike a little further to a new park you can sit and dine in. (And don’t forget the wine).
5. Ask the locals where the healthy spots are! In South Beach, Flywheel is strategically placed by a Lululemon store, so I went in and asked where to find a good juice bar in the area. I would have never seen this place on my own and it was one of the best juices I’ve ever had!
6. Don’t let the all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet take you down! The first thing you see is a beautiful spread of muffins, croissants, chocolate chocolate chip muffins, waffles, pancakes, and a million types of bagels! It’s like a carb-lovers heaven. Then you have fancy spreads of cheeses and meats like you are at a cocktail party…who eats all of that for breakfast?
My advice: Start with the eggs, small amount of meat, and fruit, and fill up on that without putting the pastry or bread items on your plate at all.
If you still feel like you are hungry after that, pick ONE pastry or bread item and enjoy, but remember the Bloody Mary that’s sure to show up in your hands in an hour! (Game of Choices, my friends!)
7. And lastly, encourage your husband/boyfriend/girlfriend/travel partner to #MakeHealthyHappen as well (in a low-pressure, non-judgmental manner, of course). That way, you’ll never mistake him (or her) for someone who is scarfing seven plates at the breakfast buffet.
(For the record, Ashley suggested I include this photo of my husband, if you can believe it.)
The bottom line is: Enjoy your time away, but consider what vacation time means to you and not what it means to others. I may get the crazy eye from some because I get up on vacation and find a studio to sweat in before I lounge on the beach all day, or choose the salad for lunch because I know I’ll be sipping frozen drinks by the pool later, but that’s what I consider healthy relaxation time. And then I don’t have to worry about that whole gross guilt thing when I get back to reality…
Here’s to making healthy happen wherever you are!