How do you maintain exercise on holidays? Realistically your normal routine of health and exercise often falls away when you go away. The resulting decline in your physical health over the holiday is a great reminder about why you have good habits in the first place – as one by one the aches and pains return.
The very sobering fact is that if you reduce your exercise by 50% on holidays for 2 weeks, you need to take 3 weeks to build up to your previous fitness levels to reduce the risk of an injury. So if you keep up some form of exercise on holidays, your body will thank you long after the holiday has finished.
We have a lot of patients who might work really hard to cure a physical problem, are in a great routine and progressing well… then they go on holidays. Only to return back to the clinic a bit worse than before they left! As they had recently made progress with physio treatment, it doesn’t take too long to return to their pain free status – but how can you exercise on holidays without interrupting your fun holiday activities?
It is easy to go for a walk or run, however strength exercises are very often left out.
By simply performing body weight exercises in the hotel room, you can avoid a myriad of problems. You don’t need to do many different exercises, but start with 2 x 20 reps of each of these and see how you go.
1. Bulgarian Squats – exercises glutes and quads. Place 1 foot on the chair behind you, bend your standing leg into a 1 legged squat – remembering to control the position of the hip, knee and foot all in a line. The deeper you squat, the stronger the exercise.
2. Bridges – for the hamstrings and low back. Lying on your back with your knees bent, lift up from your hips (don’t lead with your chest) and pulse your buttock checks up and down. A harder version is to do this 1 legged!
3. Push ups – lean your hands on a desk and keep your body straight. These angled push ups are a great way to work your arms, neck and core. To make it harder push up off objects lower to the floor (like a bath tub edge, step) the hardest being a push up on the floor – but not many people can actually do these well.
If you do some exercise on holidays to keep some baseline strength and endurance in the major muscles in your body, despite a lack of gym or “normal routine”, your body will thank you.