17 Nov 2020|Miriam Mace - Aussie Destinations Unknown
Staying fit & Healthy while fulltime travelling
9 Tips for Fit & Healthy Full Time Travel Caravanning & Camping.
Congratulations! You’ve decided to sell everything, move into your caravan and travel full time. How exciting is that? Very! But more than anything it’s life-changing, and I mean this in more ways than one. Your life really is going to change once you hand over those house keys.
I had so many thoughts whirling through my head when we made this decision, and those things were a lot different to those whirling through Chris’s! I’m embarrassed to admit but my first concern was how to fit everything I wanted to take inside the van—clothes and kitchen appliances were my main concerns—followed by how can I keep brewing my own kombucha, and how am I going to maintain my fitness levels?
Health was right at the top of my list! Higher up than how we were going to generate an income and where we were going to travel. I’ve been working in the holistic health and fitness industry for over 20 years, guiding people on their weight loss journey and helping people regain, or just build, their health and fitness. This of course involves developing healthy recipes, menu plans, writing up Personal Training (PT) programs and teaching up to 25 fitness classes a week. People watched my every move and therefore I was held accountable by my clients! If I moved into a caravan and left the only world I’d known for the past 23 years – what would happen to me?
COVID came along and gave me a helping hand. My in-person fitness classes stopped instantly and converted to online ZOOM classes. I was teaching 27 a week to start with and knowing that I would soon be on the road full time, I decided to record them, add them to a data base and have my clients sign-in to participate. I began to let everyone know that I would soon be stopping my ZOOM classes (we don’t always have internet where we travel) but that my pre-recorded classes would continue, and I would commit to loading up at least one per week.
We also partnered up with Merida bikes and part of our end of the deal is to generate content of us riding as many MTB trails across Australia as we can! Chris, of course, is super keen, and I agreed despite it seeming pretty dauting to me, as I know it’s going to keep me fit and push me out of my comfort zone.
Now how does this help you maintain your fitness on the road? It doesn’t really (unless you want to join my pre-recorded classes!), but it does give you an idea of what I did to make sure I was doing at least one class a week and getting the exercise I know I need.
Here are nine tips to help you stay fit and healthy while traveling full time.
1. Make your health and fitness a priority. Yes, you do have time! A simple 20-minute workout is easily achievable anytime, anywhere without any equipment. Here are a few basic exercises that you can combine to create your own workout.
• Squats (jump squats to increase the intensity)
• Jumping Jacks (or side taps if you can’t jump)
• Push-ups (done on the floor on your toes or knees, or against the wall or chair if necessary)
• Lunges (jumping lunges to increase the intensity)
• Tricep Dips (or laybacks as an easier option)
• High Knees
• Plank (on knees or toes)
Just doing 30 seconds of each of those exercises will have you sweating in no time. You can do it … if you really want to!
2. Do something active for at least 30 minutes every day. This can be anything from walking the dog to surfing. As long as your heart rate is up – it counts! Do everything that you can to be active (even just walking) as often as possible.
• Engage in a variety of ‘active time’ activities that include weight bearing exercises, cardio and stretching. If you go for a long walk one day, allow time for some stretching the next day and then add in some squats, push-ups and other strength exercises on a different day.
• It is also important to get up and move about for at least 2 minutes every hour. My Apple watch reminds me to do this which I love. If I don’t have a reminder when I’m editing a video or writing, I will have been sitting down for 3 hours straight without even realising!
3. Drink enough water. This includes cups of tea, kombucha and other drinks with no added sugar. The amount you need will vary according to your fitness levels and how hot or cold the weather is. Drink when you feel thirsty.
4. Don’t drink too much alcohol - which tends to go hand in hand with the nomadic lifestyle! My drink of choice is kombucha. My head thanks me the next day, my gut thanks me all the time (kombucha is fantastic for gut health!) and my waistline also thanks me. You don’t have to cut alcohol out altogether, just be sure to have a few alcohol-free days each week, and when you do drink, don’t overdo it.
5. Diet is the most important part of any healthy lifestyle and I’m sure you’ve heard the saying ‘You can’t out-exercise a bad diet.” This is so very true. No amount of exercise is going to help you lose weight or shape up if you drink beer and eat pizza every night!
• Eat clean, unprocessed, natural foods as much as possible and if it’s in a packet or jar, read the ingredients. If you can’t pronounce it or don’t know what it is – odds are you shouldn’t be eating it!
• Meal planning is how I keep on top of this. I find that taking a few hours once a week to choose recipes and shop for ingredients is the best way to avoid eating unnecessary takeout or processed foods.
• Be careful with snacking too and do it because you’re hungry – not bored!
6. Don’t let one mistake roll into many. I’ve often heard people say, ‘I’ve already blown it today, what’s another unhealthy meal?’ This is a slippery slope you definitely want to avoid! If you eat one bad meal, don’t let that turn into a bad day or week. If you miss one day of exercise, don’t let that turn into two days. Doing this will help prevent bad habits from taking over. Try and be consistent as this is the quickest way you will see positive results.
7. Be happy! Your mental health and physical health are directly related. Strive to be a positive, optimistic person who sees the good in people, circumstances and life in general. Take a step back and think carefully about who you are and who you want to be. Are they close? If not, start taking the steps to close that gap.
8. Do your best. Do the best you can with what you’ve got and don’t beat yourself up when you make a mistake. This is all about progress, not perfection!
9. Enjoy yourself! If you’re a full-time traveller, you’re living the dream of so many people. Be proud of who you are and the sacrifices you have made to create this amazing life of yours. Get out there and have some fun! I mean, that’s why we travel right? For the experiences and the memories. Don’t be afraid to have a few late nights with your mates, just be aware of the consequences, be smart about it and get back on track as soon as you can. Finding the balance between fitness, fun and relaxation is a tricky one but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be wondering why it took this long for you to get started!
Are you already doing something to stay fit and healthy on the road? Would you like to join my online fitness classes? Do you need help with meal prep? If so, I would love to hear from you! Feel free to email me at email@example.com or contact us on any of our social platforms.
Here’s to fun-filled, healthy and happy adventuring!