Happy Healthy Holidays

 You may have read my post just after Christmas about us going on holiday and how excited I was about going, and then never mentioned it again? This was for a number of reasons (some more personal than others) but we did have a lovely holiday. One of the reasons I hadn't mentioned it though was because not long after getting back I was taken ill, and had to have an emergency operation which completely wiped me out for 2 weeks and took at least another 4 weeks before I was able to get back in the gym and back to normal, which sucked, but I spent the majority of time thinking how lucky I was not to be more ill!

Anyway, we now have our next 2 holidays coming up swiftly and it's time to get excited again! But , given a long break from working out, also time to ramp up my workouts and healthy eating. Even if you aren't jetting off these tips may help you to prepare for a summer at home, for which we will hopefully have at least some nice weather! This should also help you stay on track while you're away as well.

1. Walk. 
Simple as that. I aim to walk at least 10,000 steps a day. Some days (like after a night drinking gin juice) its difficult to even do half of that, because sometimes a duvet day is needed. But, then some days I'll do more than double that so it all evens out. That's where the fitness tracker comes in - it sends me a weekly report so as long as I'm averaging at least 10,000 steps a day I'm happy. It sounds super simple but the husband lost so much weight just by walking more and slightly changing his eating habits, it really does work.

When we're on holiday we walk everywhere. It may be tempting to just lay by the pool all day, but unless you're on a resort where there isn't much to walk around (in which case see the point about workouts), try to walk instead of using public transport, or get off a stop or 2 earlier and walk the rest of the way. You'll see so much more of the city/town/village you're in and you may spot some hidden gems you'd have missed otherwise. We like to acclimatise ourselves with our destination by walking - don't be embarrassed to use a map at first - and pretty soon you'll feel like a local.

2. Additional workouts. 

As well as all my walking I'm trying to fit in 3 workouts a week. This last couple of weeks have been difficult because we're doing major redecorating at home, but where I can I've been working out twice a week and doing an extra long walk on the additional day. I'll hit the gym and do a 5 minute treadmill warm up walking at a decent speed on an incline, then a 15-20 minute run at a moderate pace and a walking cool down. Then, I do legs and bum one day, and abs and arms on another, varying the types of exercises I do - some with weights, some just body weight workouts. On my final day (usually a Friday and a good way of getting set for the weekend) I'll do an LBT class at the gym, which involves some HIIT moves to warm up and then a focused workout using small weights and a step as a boost!

When we were away in January we used the complex gym - running as a warm up and doing some weights and sit ups to finish, as well as walking every day. It meant we didn't feel guilty about indulging a little and came home feeling good too. We've booked a trip to Berlin in a couple of weeks and made sure our hotel had a gym so I'm planning on fitting in a few similar workouts, but knowing how much we walked last time we were there I shouldn't need to worry too much.

If your hotel/apartment doesn't have a gym, walk as much as you can, swim where possible (aim for 20-30 minutes of solid swimming having a rest half way through and varying strokes for an all round workout), go for a run if you're that way inclined, and fit in a quick 'in room' work out every other day. I've listed an easy to do workout routine below that works on very little space and can be varied depending on ability, I've added notes on how to make some of them slightly harder as well:

  • Warm up with high knees for 30 seconds, rest for 10, then jog on the spot for 30 seconds, and rest for 10. Repeat 3 times just to get your heart rate going. (Uses very little space so can be done in even the smallest of rooms)
  • Lunges x 10 each leg (add water bottles as weights if wanted)
  • Push ups x 10 (either full or on knees)
  • Crunches x 20
  • Burpees x 10 (or mountain climbers if less room for 30 seconds)
  • Tricep dips x 20 (on a chair or step)
  • Squats x 15 (Make these squat jumps if you want to raise your heart rate)
  • Plank 30 seconds (Full or on elbows)
  • Rest for 30 seconds after a full circuit, then repeat. Do the circuit 3-5 times for a full workout.
  • Then spend 5 minutes having a quick stretch!

3. Healthy eating

Much easier done before you go away, but put simply this is my weekly routine:
  • I start my morning with a glass of water, and either a green tea or hot water and lemon.
  •  I have a good filling breakfast like boiled egg on rye bread, or greek yoghurt with blueberries and some granola - both of which keep me going all morning.
  • For lunch I'll have a green soup with either oatcakes or a slice of rye bread. If I'm extra hungry I'll pick up a half sandwich from Pret (yes, half sandwiches are a thing) or a half hummus and falafel wrap from Eat - but limit this to once a week. Or knock up a filling and nutritious salad, with a mix of protein, grains and veggies.
  • At lunchtime I have my daily coffee - I only have one a day and it tricks me into thinking I don't need something sweet in the afternoon. I have a filter coffee or Americano as it has less milk than other options.
  • If I need a snack in the afternoon a couple of oatcakes, an apple or a banana any of which go perfectly with almond butter works wonders, add a handful of almonds and you're set.
  • I'll have a filling and nutritious dinner - usually chicken or prawns either stir-fried with loads of veg, in a homemade curry with brown rice, or served with sweet potato fries and loads of steamed veggies. Once a week we have burgers - good quality ones - without the bread, a tiny bit of cheese and sweet potato fries with veggies.
  • Then, I'll finish the evening with another green tea and a square of dark chocolate.
  • I do this Monday to Friday and then afford myself a couple of treats at the weekend, and sometimes have an extra coffee on a Friday morning.
When I go on holiday I don't watch what I eat too much because I tend to be quite active, so I enjoy the treat while I'm away. I do however love fresh fish when it's available (our holiday in January was great for this) and Berlin (believe it or not) has tons of sushi restaurants, which are great. We do try to stick to a substantial breakfast (a filled bagel, or egg and/or avocado on toast) and a coffee with plenty of water, then share something for lunch so we have a smaller portion and treat ourselves at dinnertime. This works well for us as a rule, but we don't always stick to it - ice cream and cake (or a mojito) just sometimes find themselves in our hands before we know it!

Is there anything you would recommend for staying healthy before, during or after holidays?

No comments