Flights are booked....accommodation booked... Bikinis packed. Wait.... bikini?
I think we all may have some moments of panic when vacation time rolls around and we realize it’s time to get ourselves into that bathing suit. This is where we can really stress ourselves out with potently damaging crash diets or extreme exercise routines leading up to departure time. We all want to look and feel our best while on vacation. To me, feeling our best, is the most important. I have discovered through my own experiences, when we feel good, everything else falls into place naturally with the energy we give off!
Crash diets and extreme exercise routines may not necessarily be the best for us to prepare for a vacation. Our stress levels can sky rocket and then that stress can lead to over production of cortisol in our bodies. This process could actually backfire on us. When our bodies release too much cortisol, it sends a distress signal to our brains telling our bodies to hold on to any excess fat cells in order to survive in stressful situations. That’s the last thing anyone wants before a vacation.
Crazy diets and insane work outs may work sometimes, however, it is usually a short term result. Vacation seems to be the time we feel it’s okay to eat lots of food we might not normally eat as well as possibly drink a little more alcohol. There may also be little to no exercise. So now, we may come home feeling potentially worse than before we started out. The cycle now begins, another extreme workout routine and a different diet to fix what was possibly done over your vacation.
How can we feel great during our vacation as well as coming home from vacation? I really enjoy my food, as most of us do, and I’ve also learned that I love feeling my best. This is first and foremost. It all starts from within. Whether vacationing or not, we usually know when our bodies feel at their best. Maintaining that feeling so we can feel optimal, I believe, is key. Here are a few options of what I know to work well while being on vacation and can also be implemented before you travel:
1. Give yourself time.
Time... this is something we can all take for granted. We have so little when we need it, yet so much when we think we don’t. Timelines can possibly add more stress to the situation. Instead, we can start by introducing one new "healthy" change a day. For example: Maybe eliminate that one extra glass of wine you might have with dinner? Maybe the next day, go for a longer walk than usual. Already we’ve made two positive changes for our health in less than 48 hours. Slow and steady wins the race. There is always an option of some professional nutrition advice as well. This can possibly help guide us through the process if one is more serious about a long term result. A nutrition plan prior to a vacation may also be helpful to maintain your health before, during and after a vacation.
2. Understanding the sources of where to get our food from before you go on vacation.
If we are staying in a condo, and we know we have access to a full kitchen to cook our own meals, we should source out the nearest grocery store. There will most likely be the occasional dinner out, however, it is helpful to know what is in and around the area you are staying. This can help eliminate some fast food stops that may not be the healthiest of choices. If you are staying at an all inclusive, it’s a good idea to also know what you can expect at the hotel. Buffets will most likely make up the majority of these larger resorts, and in my experience there are always some healthy options for every meal. We always should aim to get at least one veggie meal in a day. This is simple to do at any buffet as there are always those options. Stocking up on healthy snacks (fruit is always good) in your hotel room to avoid binging at those large buffets is a great idea.
3. Stay hydrated, before, during and after any vacation.
Water, water, water.... Its hard to drink too much water. Add some lemon to it for an even healthier drink, or even some organic and herbal teas are always a great source of hydration. If possible, pack a few apples for the plane ride. Apples are very hydrating and help flush water through the liver and also prevent bloating before a plan ride. You can usually purchase them at one of the news stand stores inside security. Staying hydrated can be key to feeling our best throughout our vacation. Be sure to always keep a bottle or glass of water by your side. Whether its dining out, lounging pool side or out on an adventure, having a water source close by can help us in so many ways to feel our best while traveling.
4. Keep Moving...
There will be some adventures where we would most likely need a vehicle. When adventuring out on shorter excursions, there may be the option to walk. It’s always a great idea to take advantage of this to see some sites you may not have seen if you drove. Perhaps getting up a little early for a walk on the beach? If there is a gym provided, perhaps a 20 or 30 minute walk on the treadmill might feel great after a long day in the sun? Swimming is one of the best exercises, so if there is a pool or beach, take advantage of getting in the water a few times a day. Another way to walk around more on vacation might include taking the stairs at your hotel, booking an upper floor condo or even offer to be the “server” on vacation. Enjoy being the one to go get the food and drinks for your friends or family you might be with? This would will get you up and moving more frequently, as well as just being a great sport!
While these are only a few tips and tricks I have found useful for myself, not everyone is the same and I understand that. Its why I do what I do, custom programs to help others feel amazing inside and out according to their specific needs and goals. A well rounded, balanced diet along with maintainable exercise weekly is a great place to start for everyone I think! I love hearing what has worked for others in this regard too and love learning, always.
I think we all want to come home from a vacation feeling refreshed, not worse. Vacation is and can also be healthy for our mental well being. I think having a healthy mind set is key to feeling and looking your best from the inside out. Feeling good will in turn venture into other healthy habits and make eating well and exercising not only a pre-vacation goal, but lifelong.
All the love,