3 Hotel-Friendly Exercises To Keep In Shape While Traveling

24 pounds of excess baggage… gone. Why put off till the New Year what I could start last fall? I like having a jump on things- personally and professionally. So I started a diet last September. Not just a diet, but rather an overall health kick. “They” say it takes 3 weeks to form a habit. Being January, I’m four months in and am proud to say that it has stuck. I’ve lost 24 pounds… excess baggage so to speak in industry terms. This is the kind of baggage that I hope never returns.

It helps that I hired a personal trainer to teach me exercises I could do in any hotel room, especially since I was traveling extensively for business and pleasure over the last few months. Traveling. The holidays. Not a good combination for weight loss. However, I was able to keep on track with a little help from my trainer.

Here are three hotel-friendly exercises to help keep in shape while traveling.

Man doing plank exercise

1) The Plank 

The Plank is simple, effective and can be done in any hotel room. It is a favorite even amongst the fitness elite since it works many muscles with little effort, like your shoulders, abs, lower back and obliques.

Form: Place your elbows directly under your shoulders with your feet behind you shoulder width apart. Hold for about 30 seconds.

Trainer’s tip: Watch dropping your lower back. Keep it straight.

Woman doing squats

2) The Squat

Trainer’s tip: Watch out for leaning forward. Your chest should be facing forward, not down. Try staring at a high-spot on the wall during your squat. 

Squats are highly effective at gaining strength and conditioning in the lower body. Not to mention, they’re a calorie burner with large muscle groups, such as the thighs (front of legs), hamstrings (back of legs), and glutes (butt muscles).

Form: Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Then drop hips and imagine sitting on a chair.

3) The ABC

ABC Pushup

The ABC is challenging, but essential and very effective at building and maintaining upper body stability and conditioning. It’s a builder for pushups and a continuation of working muscles like pecs (chest), triceps (arms), shoulders and your core.

Form: In the push up position with your arms straight (on your toes or knees with hands directly under your shoulders), move one hand and tap opposite shoulder. Then switch.

Trainer’s tip: Watch out for dropping your lower back and keep hands under shoulders.

ALSO: Why Wait For The Hotel Room? Travelers Can Hit the Airport, Too! 

Corporate and group leisure travelers once had few options to pass the time during airport layovers. One, eat. Two, hang out at the bar. Three, sit and wait.

A handful of airports are offering travelers a healthier alternative to eating, drinking and sitting. If you find yourself on a layover in Phoenix, Dallas/Fort Worth, Boston or Indianapolis, check out the exercise options available now.

Phoenix Sky Harbor opened PHX Fitness Trail, a two-mile interior fitness trail with seven water stations. It’s located in Terminal 4 inside the TSA checkpoints so you don’t have to go through security again. Grab a brochure at the terminal’s information counter for a map, mileage and points of interest.

Dallas/Fort Worth Airport has the DFW LiveWell Walking Path inside Terminal D between gates D6 and D40. Mosaics mark your mileage and two 55-foot high staircases are an alternative to the Skylink. Begin or end your walk at gate D40 in the yoga studio.

Logan Airport in Boston has walking paths and four health stations in Terminals A, B and C where travelers can check blood pressure. Height and weight scales are also available for determining Body Mass Index.

Indianapolis Regional Airport modeled its walking paths after outdoor parks. Travelers track their steps using markers in the corridors.

Note: Security doesn’t allow for bags to be left anywhere, so make sure yours is on wheels or easy to carry while walking.

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