Love it or hate it, you will be on the road at some point in your life–and your most well-established fitness habits will be put to the test. From passing time during an airport layover to wining and dining with clients, temptation is everywhere. But what the heck, why not have another dessert or drink. You’ll get back on track when you get home.

It’s true; a few days of indulgence won’t set you too far from your fitness goals, but too many treats can leave you feeling foggy, sluggish and wishing you had remembered to pack those healthy habits in your suitcase.

Here are a few tricks that I use to navigate the temptations of travel:

1. Do your homework

Check out the local running, walking, or biking paths and scope out the gym situation at your hotel. Before every trip, I map out my runs and plan where I would like to explore. Running or walking through a city is a really fun way to get to know a new place. You could also rent a bike from the local bike share or join a local class outdoors. Get creative and use this as an opportunity to try something new!

2. Prep your food

I have actually gone through security with sautéed spinach and grains! If this sounds a little extreme, you can still pack a few good power snacks and limit the mess. Nuts, nut butter packets, little cheese packs, fruit (apples or pre-peeled citrus), and packs of dry oatmeal can be lifesavers. If I ever run out of snacks, my go-to is actually Starbucks. They are almost guaranteed to carry a few healthy staples, just watch the sugar and stick with single-ingredient foods to limit salt, sugar, and chemicals.

Close-Up Of Almonds And Blueberries On Plate
When packing your suitcase make sure to also include healthy snacks that keep you energized while traveling and act as the perfect pick-me-up when hotel the snack bar is filled with tempting chocolate and chips. ©Amanda Bellhartz/EyeEm

3. Get moving

When you head to the airport, wear sneakers and comfortable clothing and go light with your carry-on (I always have a backpack). If you are light and comfortable, you can spend those layover hours walking instead of sitting.

4. Refuel

When I reach my destination, I make sure that I find a grocery store to replenish power snacks and water for evenings in the hotel. These snacks are also really important as you never know what will be offered at your meeting or conference venue. My favorite options are fruit, air-popped popcorn, yogurt, and nuts. Make sure you have a fridge in your hotel room to keep everything fresh.

5. Go green and get some air

By walking or renting a bike, you will be helping the environment and your health. Leave enough time to walk to your meeting and between meetings try to escape for a quick walk so you can re-energize with sunlight and fresh air. This might also be a great way to network and make friends, as I guarantee others are working hard to keep their habits and would be grateful for a walking buddy!

man in running clothes looking at the runtastic app on his phone
Got time for a lunchbreak run or want to see your destination in the evening? Keep using your fitness app to register your miles and your favourite route around the city.

6. Booze easy and eat light

Travel can stress your digestive system, so it’s a good idea to eat and drink on the lighter side and stick to familiar, simple foods. If you eat out, try an appetizer salad with protein as your go-to. Alcohol can pack on the calories and make you hesitant to wake up early for a run tomorrow, so be cognizant of your intake.

7. Get motivated

Now that you’ve done all the research on runs, gyms, and bike paths, you have to actually get out there! But if you really don’t feel like leaving your hotel room, or the weather stinks, there are tons of fitness apps that you can follow without much space or equipment–so there is really no excuse. Your body and brain will thank you later in the day.

However, try to have fun on the road by incorporating a little physical activity into your itinerary and keep your food simple and light!

Do you stick to your fitness routine when you travel? Share your experiences in the comments below.


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by Mark Rouse 28.02.2017
One more tip: drink lots of water on long flights. It not only prevents dehydration, which is a jetlag contributor, but also means you'll be getting out of the seat and moving around more often.
Nina Weihrauch
Nina Weihrauch | Editor Mark Rouse 01.03.2017
Great tip, Mark! Thanks for sharing.

High five,

by Brooke Rosenbauer Mark Rouse 01.03.2017
Absolutely! Thanks for sharing! Hydration is critical for keeping us feeling on top of our game.
by Frank Mark Rouse 01.03.2017
😂 Love it, Mark.
by Liz Mcsavaney 01.03.2017
Thanks for sharing these great tips! As a Crossfit athlete, I always research WOD's I can do in hotel gyms or while on the road. It's also a great opportunity to get a workout in with a new Crossfit box is a different city, meet new people and expand the community.
by Brooke Rosenbauer Liz Mcsavaney 01.03.2017
That's an awesome tip! It's so much more motivating when you have a chance to connect with new people and a new place through fitness. Thanks for sharing!
by Miss Athlètique 01.03.2017
Staying fit and eating clean and additionally getting enough ZZZs are never easy when traveling on a really tight schedule! But sticking to my cleaning eating and working out. if not a morning run - going for a HIIT in a hotel's room. #noexcuses

More my adventures and tips on my blog.
by Annika 06.03.2017
A healthy-eating tip from an ex-TaylorMade & adidas Golf sales rep who used to spend lots of time travelling in the countryside on my way to the bigger cities. I have a healthy lifestyle and diet and wanted to maintain it on the road as well but sometimes it was tough when there were only gas stations around. Then I realized that the local golf club usually had healthier and nicer lunch options, often in "home-made" style. A big plus for nicer views and being in the nature!
by Brooke Rosenbauer Annika 07.03.2017
Thanks for sharing! Way to get creative!
by Bastian 01.06.2017
Another good one is to make sure you check-out your hotel Destination Prior travel, e.g. is a park in the surroundings?, how is the air quality ?, does the Hotel offer a gym or a pool?. usually I also travel having a small eye purification device with me.