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Where leisure meets fitness: 4 vacation activities to stay fit

Lana Bandoim's picture

Do you want to stay fit while you are on vacation and still have fun? Then, consider these ideas that will keep you in shape.


Many people like to debate about whether or not they should stick to their workout regimen while on vacation because it can be hard to do, inconvenient or undesirable. After all, you are on vacation to have fun and forget about your usual cares including weight loss. However, committing to health is a lifelong process, and you cannot let it lapse just because you are on vacation. This does not mean you have to do the same workouts you always do. Instead, you can mix it up by integrating your destination into your workouts with these great vacation fitness ideas.

1. Equip yourself

Before you undertake any type of activity, before you even leave for vacation, you will want to make sure you have everything you need to make the most of your trip. Experts recommend investing in a fitness tracker, like a Fitbit or Jawbone, that can help you track your activity levels during your trip. Most people walk more than they usually do when on vacation, so it is worth watching these numbers.

You may want to put a few pieces of small, light fitness equipment in your suitcase for your trip. Jump ropes and resistance bands are perfect, portable items that you can use almost anywhere. If you have built up enough strength in advance, you may want to consider bringing wrist or ankle weights to enhance your daily strolls.

2. Take a tour

Tours come in many forms, but no matter where they take you, an educational stroll often packs a greater workout than you would expect. Old cities are often full of hills and staircases to climb, and tours that integrate these also have cardio benefits.

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One type of tour that many people think of as a leisurely and fun activity is the zip line tour. Zip lines typically run through the rainforest canopy and allow travelers to get up close and personal with the diverse animal species that live in these areas. Although the actual ride may not require much exertion because you are in a harness and propelled down a long rope course, the trek into the rainforest and up to the starting point of the zip line will give you a workout.

3. Hit the beach

Do you love going to the beach when you are on vacation? You can work on your tan or splash in the ocean, or you can burn calories while learning to surf or wakeboard. Both of these activities are strenuous, especially if you have never done them before, and you will build core strength while working on your balance.

Beach volleyball is also an incredible calorie burner. This activity is a powerful way to work out because it takes more energy to walk or run in the sand than it does on solid ground or even uneven grass. Plus, setting and spiking the ball will give your upper body a workout.

4. Climb higher

If you feel like your upper body is being neglected in the course of all your leisurely walking, a great activity that comes with fantastic views is rock climbing. Rock climbing is intense and requires both leg and upper body strength, so it burns a lot of calories. If you are going to try this vacation workout, make sure you have some time in your schedule to let your muscles recover.

Your vacation workouts do not need to be identical to what you would do at home, but you should not slack off just because you are away. It will make it harder to get back into your normal fitness routine if you take too much time off from exercise while you are traveling.