How I Spent My Summer Vacation (Keeping Fit)
A couple weeks ago, I wrote an article called Build a Beach-Worthy Body Before It’s Too Late in which I espoused the benefits of working out and eating healthy in maintaining a muffin top-free physique. This week I’ve attempted to put those same principles into action during an actual vacation.
I’m writing this article from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. In case you haven’t been here (or any other tourist trap beach in America), Myrtle Beach is bursting at the seams with horribly unhealthy food and lazy activity. If you’re not eating buffalo chicken pizza or lying on a beach towel getting assaulted by the sun, you’re probably scarfing down sliders and lying on a couch watching whatever movie’s playing on local TV (this afternoon, it was “Couples Retreat.”)
In my effort to maintain some semblance of a healthy lifestyle while I’m here (I’ve already had Mexican, pizza, ice cream and Japanese chocolate in the two days I’ve been here), I’ve made certain adaptations to my schedule. Here are some helpful tips to stay fit during your vacation:
Despite your best intentions, your plan to work out in-between afternoon mini golf and evening dinner at Margaritaville is likely to fall apart. Whether it’s for getting lost on the highway or spending a little bit too much time drinking by the pool, workouts in the middle of the day during a vacation are often destroyed by vacation woes. The best way to maintain a normal workout regimen during vacation is to get up as early as possible, preferably before everybody else in your entourage is awake. This way you’ll guarantee you got a workout in and won’t have to worry about 3 p.m. jetskiiing getting in the way.
Unless you’re on vacation by yourself and/or on some kind of health nut resort, there’s no way you’ll be able to eat healthy, protein-rich food at every meal. Tourist towns don’t offer a lot of healthy food options, and more likely than not your friends/family won’t be with you on the whole “let’s not eat chimichangas and friend Snickers bars every night” diet. You’re going to eat some utter garbage on vacation, and it’s totally okay. Do your best to keep it in moderation. If you know you’ll be eating bacon and cheese-covered fries with ribs for dinner, eat smoothies and salads earlier in the day.
Sitting on a beach chair at the hotel pool ogling milfs in bikinis is not the best workout. Neither is riding a rollercoaster (no matter how incredibly fast you’re going.) If you want to get your body moving and don’t have time to work out in the wee hours of the morning, incorporate physically intense workouts into whatever you’re doing. Plan on spending all afternoon on the beach? Bring a football and/or run where the sand is firm. Standing in line to get on the Tilt-a-Whirl? Do some calf raises and/or stretches to pass the time.
Vacation is a time to have fun and forget your frustrations. If you don’t want to return to your normal life feeling like ass, work out and eat healthy the best you can while you’re away. Make smart choices each day and your vacation will be a fit one. Just go easy on the damn salt water taffy.
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About John Brhel John Brhel is a freelance writer from upstate New York that enjoys picking apart life's idiosyncrasies and listening to Huey Lewis & the News.