I haven’t traveling for work in years, but it’s hard to forget just how crazy squeezing in a travel workout was. I am hopping on a plane for business this week and prepping my packing list.
Top of the list for your travel: Plan your workouts.
Hotel rooms or hotel gym for your travel workout?
The whole point of your traveling for business means that your time is packed. At least mine has always been. You are busy enough in the office, and all those items on your list of deadlines won’t wait until you get back.
Finding time when traveling is the enemy to your workout plan. That’s why sizing up what options you have is important as soon as you check in.
What’s in the room?
Walk in and check out your options. Is there room for you to do a pushup? Any surfaces strong enough to lean on?
Don’t discount what you brought with you. Unless you buy as you go you probably packed a bag. There’s a reason those bags come with little wheels. Typically they weigh something, and you’d be amazed the workout you can get with one heavy bag.
Where’s the gym?
Yes, most hotels offer a gym. Most are super tiny and offer almost equipment with the exception of a treadmill and light weights. Remember to check out the hotel website to see if there are any details online before you pack.
You might be pleasantly surprised. Don’t discount the equipment unless you take the time to check it out. Keep an open mind and consider this an opportunity to break out of the routine and mix it up.
What to plan for your travel workout.
Now that you’ve scoped out the opportunities at the hotel gym, let’s talk workout options. If there are decent weights you may not need to change a thing in your workout plan. If the weights are on the lighter side, try these workout ideas:
Light weight, high reps.
Keep to your weight plan, but turn it on its head. Take your weight down by 75% and double your reps. If you can curl 50 lbs for 10 reps (not me… just an example!) take your weight down to 12-15 lbs and your reps up to 20.
Have you ever heard of 100’s? The name says it all. It truly is doing reps to 100 to complete failure, with light weights of course. I’ve never made it to 100 but I can tell you that trying this will kick butt.
Pick a side, one at a time.
Choosing one side at a time can really even out a workout you might have done a million times. Here are a few examples. What else can you think of?
These beauties are naturally using only one side of the body. You can mix it up by doing several reps on one side before switching. Try walking lunges for a big test on balance. Every lunge needs tight abs, a decent stride, and lowering straight down with a straight back.
Curls, triceps, shoulder presses, you name it:
Alternate sides one rep at a time, or exhaust one arm before handing the weight over to the other side.
This is will take any pushup routine over the top. My favorite are one-leg pushups. But I know there are those that would give a one handed pushup a go!
Work the room.
Your hotel room offers a workout space too, so don’t use late night meetings or early coffee brainstorming an excuse that you can’t squeeze in a few reps.
Do you have a chair with armrests in the room? Test the stability of the chair first! Keep abs tight, shoulders down and shoulder blades together. Keep those elbow pointed back and lower as far as you can to engage the tricep.
Elevated or inverted pushups:
We all know about the classic pushup so you can make it easier or harder by leaning on furniture. This is best on a table or dresser for stability. Inverted pushups mean that your feet are higher than your head.
Elevated pushups mean that your hands will be higher than your feet. Elevated pushups are a great way to add strength as you work up to standard pushups.
Planks or dynamic planks:
Yes, I am a huge fan of planks. Done with the correct form by keeping a neutral spine and tight abs, planks work a ton of stabilizer muscles.
Try an advanced option with dynamic planks. Alternate going from the plank position to a full pushup position, by pressing your hand directly under your shoulder first with one arm then the other. Reverse the move back to the plank and repeat by starting with the opposite arm.
Remember that heavy bag you lugged around? Use it to your advantage! How heavy you make it is up to you, but depending on the size of the bag, you can hold it at your chest or overhead. As with any squat workout, keep your form for maximum impact.
Safe and healthy travels include your travel workout.
Overnight trips to weeks on the road require planning. You know what you need to pack, meetings to schedule, tickets to buy.
Keep your travel workout plan on the list too! What’s your favorite workout plan when you travel?
Go get your fit on