Staying skinny when you’re living large.

I love to eat. I love to drink. I also love to be not fat. So how can I continue my life of debauchery on the road without all my workout gear? Since packing your Gazelle is out of the question, I’ll show you what I do.

turn your hotel room into boot camp:

Soldiers are in shape without fancy equipment. They kick it old school with jumping jacks, push-ups and sit-ups. Do you know anyone that’s in better shape than a soldier? Not if you love freedom. Ask a travel buddy to yell insults at you to further enhance your boot camp experience.

A quick hotel workout is a great way to justify that plate of tagliatelle with fresh shaved white truffles on it. Mmmm, truffles…

hotel workout

pack some bands:

I pack these Embark bands from Target … they come with an attachment that you can close into parts of the door to simulate pull-ups, rowing and tons of other exercises. And I’m pretty sure it’s not going to whack me in the face. I bring a heavy and medium, but encourage you to break into the box at the store and test out which one works best. Two bands are nice because you can alternate between door and floor exercises. Stepping on a loop varies the tension for different arm things too.

These come with exercise diagrams, take up zero space, and I’m pretty sure will come in handy for a random Magyver use.

Wow I should take a pic of me holding the box giving a thumbs up!

hotel workout

hotel workout idea:

I like intervals. You do a little minute burst of cardio than something with resistance, than cardio, than resistance. It keeps your heart rate up and keeps it interesting, nothing bores me more than walking on a treadmill for 30 minutes. I usually like to do high reps until I can’t do anymore then I switch. I make it up as I go and work whatever muscles I feel need it that day. (Bonus: Count reps in a different language to practice your numbers)

Be creative with your hotel room. Use spare towels as a mat, a chair is awesome for some tricep dips, elevate your legs on the bed for some mega hard push-ups, wrap your bands around the feet of the bed to make an instant rowing machine, do chair pose while drying your hair. WIN!

  • stretch and warm up
  • Cardio
  • Bands
  • Cardio
  • Bands
  • Cardio
  • Bands
  • Cardio
  • Push-ups
  • Abs
  • Lay on floor

don’t pack a bunch of workout clothes:

Once I witnessed my sister packing for two weeks in Mexico and much to my dismay she packed a different workout outfit for everyday.

Workout gear is awesome because it’s designed to dry fast. After I work out I throw all the stuff that needs washing on the floor of the shower. And clean it the same time I’m getting clean. Hey that’s probably eco friendly! You can use mini laundry detergent which I usually keep in the shower on vacation. Hang it up in the shower and it will be dry the next day.

I also don’t pack separate workout shoes. I pack one pair of tennis shoes that are cute enough to wear with jeans for a big walking day, but comfy enough to do a hotel workout in.

My Hotel Workout Packing List

  • Nike Running Skirt (adorable)
  • Tank top
  • Freya Sports Bra
  • 2 sets of resistance bands with anchors
  • 1 pair of cute sneakers (working out and touring)
  • Socks (working out and touring)


This workout kicks ass. Well it kicks my ass. I do this when I’m actually home, but the majority of the exercises don’t require equipment and instead of weights you can substitute bands. There’s a 15 minute ab routine that I do on vacation because I have it memorized and it makes me cry.

And yes the instructors name is Tony (see Gazelle).

do walk!

When I’m on vacation I walk everywhere! Sure cabs are quick and easy, and there is a time to taxi, like when it’s dark and bummy out. But most times I prefer getting there on my own two feet. Sometimes I will walk all day shopping, eating, drinking and forget I’m even walking because of all the stops along the way. Walking tours are another great way to explore a city.

The other reason I walk so much is half the time I’m completely lost and I refuse to look like a tourist and look at my map or ask for directions.

pretend the elevator is out of order:

Hoofing it up several flights of stairs each day may be the difference between burning off a blueberry muffin and a muffin top. Tackle the stairs at your hotel, skip the escalator at the subway. Anything that goes up, go up the hard way.

book some active activities:

What better way to stay in shape on vacation than combining some adventure travel. Hiking, rafting, hang gliding, snorkeling, kayaking see the city on roller blades (no segways), take a tango class. Have you ever ridden a horse for two hours? Your thighs will be saying woah!!

just dance:

My favorite vacation workout is dancing my ass off. Especially in a country where I don’t speak the language. No need for chit chat on the dance floor. Go out! Spin, twirl, shimmy, cabbage patch. Who cares! Nobody knows you here. I’d suggest ending on the moon walk.

don’t be a psycho:

If you combine lots of little common sense things they add up to help you stay fit and balanced. No need to be Jane Fonda seven days a week. You’re on vacation. If you’re not having fun, than you shouldn’t be doing it. I try and apply this principal to life in general.

The only reason I throw in a hotel workout on vacay is because I practically move somewhere when I visit. So leave the guilt at home and order dessert.

Something to Say?

Your email address will not be published.