5 Brilliant Ways To Exercise On Vacation Without Hating It


May 19, 2022

Should you, or should you not, exercise on vacation?  

My Goal for You: 

is to be fit, healthy, and happy on vacation or while traveling.  

In some situations, this means taking a break from exercise.  

Whether you should or shouldn’t exercise, I will prove how a traveler’s unpredictable lifestyle still allows for exercise without it being too demanding.  

If you follow these key steps or guidelines, you’ll be able to stay in fantastic shape wherever you travel.  

Exercise on vacation climbing stairs
Exercise on vacation with yoga

What Is Considered Exercise?  

Any movement of your body requiring energy is considered physical activity. Exercise is when you plan to do physical activity to increase your overall physical fitness (1).  

Should You Exercise on Vacation?  

When talking about exercising on vacation, psychology is an important factor. If you are very active and fit, taking a two-week break from working out can be good for your body.  

On the other hand, staying busy can be good for your mental health. It’s a great way to get rid of stress. 

To answer the question, it all depends on your level of fitness, how hard you’ve been pushing your body lately, and how long your vacation is.  

Exercise, But Find the Balance  

If you’re going on vacation and it’s longer than 2 weeks, it’s best to do light exercise regularly. This will make you feel good without making you work too hard. 

At the beginning of our trip, I didn’t work out, and boy did that hurt me later, both physically and mentally. Not only did the tone of my muscles change, but the texture and color of my skin also changed. 

Exercise On Vacation To Meet People  

Doing exercise on vacation and other active things is a sure way to meet new people.  

You might not even consider what you’re doing as exercise. Going for a snorkel is more like a fun activity but is in fact exercise. 

People like to feel like they are part of a team. We run, walk, hike, swim, and do gym programs together. If you stay fit while traveling, you’ll look good and might meet some interesting people.  

Exercise for Your Heart’s Health.  

Exercising or being consistently physically active prevents strokes, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure and diminishes anxiety and depression.  

How Long Can You Rest Before Your Fitness Goes Downhill?  

Most of the time, your genes determine how fast you lose endurance and muscle mass.  

Taking a week or two off won’t make much of a difference, but if you take longer than that, it may be harder to get back to where you were (3), (4).  

Finding ways to stay as active as possible will help you stay in shape and make it easier to get back to real life.  

Muscles Have Memory:

Your muscles are strong, and you remember all the exercises you did to make them stronger, but your aerobic capacity tends to go down quickly. About 10% in three weeks (2 

Your total fitness gains could be gone in about two months if you do nothing.  

What are the Benefits of Exercising on Vacation?  

Exercise to Prevent and Alleviate Lower Back Pain  

Muscle tension can be caused by sitting for long periods, driving for several hours, or sleeping on a different mattress. To avoid lower back pain, your back must remain strong (5) 

Look Good to Feel Good  

Everyone likes to look good. Exercise can make you feel and look good. You will continue to look better the more consistently you exercise. This should make you happier, and people will notice how much more attractive you have become.  

Looking good to feel good and feeling good to look good is a constant cycle. It’s hard to say which comes first.  

exercise on vacation

Exercise to Sleep Better  

I noticed that when I stopped working out on our long-term travels, I had less energy, couldn’t sleep well, had trouble going to the toilet, and my joints hurt. I didn’t realize this was because I was inactive until I started working out regularly again.  

How To Stay Fit on Vacation Without Doing Routine Exercises:  

I’ll admit that it was hard at first to stick to a regular workout schedule when I was traveling.  

Exercise seems like a routine thing to do, and being on the road a lot is not good for routines.  

Walk Everywhere.  

Walking often should become second nature. Always choose the stairs over the elevator. Before breakfast, go for a morning walk. If the restaurant is only a few blocks away, walk there instead of taking a car. Exercise on vacation need not be an obvious task.  

Exercise on vacation climbing stairs
exercise on vacation by walking

Ride a Bicycle.  

Maybe your holiday destination is in a small town or on a tropical island. The best way to sight-see in places like this is on a bicycle. Taking a bicycle tour (found on Airbnb) is a great way to exercise on vacation.  


Swim more, whether it’s in the ocean or a pool at a resort or hotel. Swimming is a great way to work out your whole body and keep you cardio fit. Swimming burns almost as many calories as running but is much easier on your weight-bearing joints. (6)  

exercise on vacation by swimming

Watch What You Eat.  

Eating enough protein will help you train better and keep you from eating foods that will make you gain weight. We all love carbs—there’s nothing wrong with the occasional pizza or donut, but always remember to eat enough protein to balance the scales. Protein keeps you feeling fuller for longer.  

Keep an Eye Out for Liquid Calories 

Which are also called “hidden calories.” When you drink alcohol, soda, fruit juice, and other sugary drinks throughout the day, the calories can add up quickly. Liquid calories are always consumed much faster than solid ones, and they don’t make you feel as full for as long. 

stay healthy on vacation by eating fresh food
fresh food on vacation

The Best Time to Exercise on Vacation  

When you’re on the road, it’s much easier to start your day with a workout than to end it with one. You never know how your day will go, where you’ll end up, or how you’ll feel when it’s over.  

You feel good and full of energy when you wake up in the morning. This is the best time to squeeze in a quick run or HIIT session. 

What is the Best Travel Workout with No Equipment? 

HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)

These fitness programs include exercises like burpees, glute bridges, sit-ups, push-ups, squats, lunges, planks, and jumping jacks. Try these HIIT workouts if you’re looking for programs that focus on certain areas. 

Running and Swimming

These are also great ways to stay in shape or get exercise while on vacation. They don’t require much in the way of equipment and aren’t costly. 


What Is the Best Travel Equipment to Pack? 

This is completely up to you and what you like. For me, I like to skip, run, and do yoga. If you prefer resistance exercise, you might use a resistance band or even bring weights with you! I know that sounds crazy, but it’s not! See the sections below for more information.  

Resistance Band  

You might not have room for weights or a yoga mat, but a simple resistance band will do the trick and take up very little space in your backpack. I’ve put together a list of fun and different resistance band workouts for you to try. 

Running Shoes or Sneakers  

I’m sure you’ll bring comfortable shoes for your trip, since most vacations involve more walking than usual, but if you don’t, don’t forget to bring running shoes. Bring shoes that you have worn before. Spending money on new shoes that need to be broken in is a waste. It’s the worst to have blisters that haven’t had enough time to heal. 

Cordless Earphones  

If you don’t already have a set, Bluetooth earphones are the way to go. Check out what some of the slightly better brands have to offer at the entry level. They cost less and are more likely to last longer. 

Phone Holder or Smart Watch


AquaBell Travel Weights are a one-of-a-kind set of dumbbells that can fit in a briefcase or carry-on bag. When you get to your destination, just fill them with water, and each dumbbell can give you up to 16 pounds of resistance.  

Travel Towel  

These towels are made of materials that soak up a lot of water and can be packed down to a very small size. You’ll be able to stay cool or refreshed during a workout, and you’ll be able to dry off well after a swim. One of my favorite travel items is my travel towel, which I use often. 

Water Bottle  

Always bring a bottle of water with you when you travel. It will make you feel full, keep you hydrated, and stop you from snacking. Check out my article on detox waters for great water drink recipes. 

Exercise Apps  

There are plenty workouts that you can find on the internet. You can download fitness apps either before you leave for your travels or when you’re connected to Wi-Fi. 

You’ll have access to a lot of free options that give you a wide range of exercises that are made just for you. 

I use Sworkit to do cardio and tone my body. After using the free plan for a while, I decided that this was the app for me and signed up for a year. Down Dog is my favorite yoga app. Most people don’t need anything more than the free version. Before paying for apps, try out the free versions first.  

Jump Rope 

Skipping with a jump rope is a great cardio workout that will burn a lot of calories in a short amount of time. On average, jumping rope for 10 minutes burns 124 calories, which is the same as jogging for at least 20 minutes. 

Bathing Suit, Cap and Mask 

If you’re going somewhere warm, swimming is a great way to get some exercise. Most of the time, it’s very humid in tropical places, and working out on land can be very tiring. Swimming will cool you off. If you want to swim laps in a hotel pool, don’t forget to bring goggles to protect your eyes from the chlorine. Don’t forget to bring goggles to keep the chlorine out of your eyes.   

Pack the Right Attire  

Pack as many workout clothes as the rest of your clothes, so you won’t have any reason not to work out. 

Don’t forget to bring at least one fitness bra or bralette and a pair of leggings if you’re a girl. You guys have it a little bit easier. You’ll be fine with swim shorts and T-shirts that are the right length.  

exercise on vacation by gymming
exercise on vacation by doing yoga

How Can I Exercise During Long-Term Travel? 

Set Up a Routine for Your Trip.  

Set aside time to work out. When will you have an hour to yourself? Maybe it’s right when you wake up or right before bed. You could exercise instead of watching Netflix for half an hour a day. You must set aside time and stick to it, even if it’s just three times a week. I’m not saying you have to “plan” or “map out” the next few weeks or months, but try to keep your workouts as consistent as possible. 

Get a Good Night’s Rest… Often

For your energy levels:

Getting adequate sleep is more important than working out. You won’t have the energy to work out if you don’t get enough sleep.  

For your liver:

Your liver works the hardest between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m. If you’re still awake at that time, your liver isn’t doing its job. 

To prevent weight gain:

Several studies have also shown that not getting enough sleep makes insulin less sensitive (a fancy way of saying high insulin resistance). (8

To keep things simple and not get too specific about insulin resistance: Insulin resistance means that insulin levels are high in your body, and insulin is a hormone that makes and stores fat. When there is more insulin, there is more fat. The two go together like avo and toast.  

To keep your mind healthy:

If you don’t get enough sleep, your brain may not work as well. Research shows that not getting enough sleep (about 4 hours a night) is the same as getting older by 8 years (9). Depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders are also linked to lack if sleep. Always try to sleep between seven and eight hours every night. 

Join Fitness Classes Near You

Check out fitness classes in your area that let you work out with other people. This will make you more likely to go to your workout and finish it. 

Choose Your Accommodation Carefully.  

If you plan to travel for a long time and want to get some exercise, think about these tips before you book your stay.  

  • Is there a gym on the premises?  
  • Are you looking at places that have a pool?  
  • Does your accommodation have a park or roads that are good for running nearby?  

You can narrow your search on booking.com or Airbnb to only show places with gyms and pools. 

exercise on vacation at gym

What Exercise Burns the Most Calories in 30 Minutes?  

Cardio exercises with a high intensity burn the most calories in the shortest amount of time.  

Running and Jumping Rope:

These are at the top of the list. Running or jogging is also the most effective way to burn off belly fat (7

Weight Training:

Even though lifting weights isn’t the fastest way to burn calories, it is a good way to keep burning calories even after you’re done exercising. The more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn at rest.