I must confess, A�I used to be a a�?gym rata�?. A�I was not the negative stereotype of a gym rat however. A�Oh, you know exactly what I am talking about- the guys and gals that somehow simultaneously grunt like cave people, trying to hold their flex position in the mirror, while taking a selfie. A�Nope, not me. A�But, I did have some bizarre complex about the gym. A�I liked the external motivation of others around, possibly watching me. A�It pushed me to work out harder, and sweat more. A�The employees recognized me. A�They always asked me how training was going for whatever endurance event I had going. A�They teased me when I was absent for a few days. A�Somehow, I thought that if I wasna��t at the gym, I wasna��t getting a good workout. A�I couldna��t have been more wrong.
I am proud to say that I have been pretty much a�?gym freea�? for over a year now A�(Talk about a money saver!). A�I still go to boxing class, and CrossFit on occasion when I am in my training a�?off season,” (It gets really cold in Chicago, and I hate running/cycling in the cold!)A� but otherwise, I have found ways to workout more creatively, without monstrous machines,A� employee approval, and the energy of others. A�I have learned to rely on myself. A�I am glad that I found my way, because it has helped me be creative with fitness while flying. When I want to get a run in, and the weather is bad, or ita��s too late, I use the hotel gym, but all of my other workouts while traveling are done in my hotel room, outside, or while exploring.
Ready for the kicker? I bring all my equipment with me, and it all fits in my 22a�� suitcase.
Here is my list of must pack, lightweight fitness equipment for travel.
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When I purchased this jump rope, I had not jumped rope in over 15 years. A�I recall this day very vividly; A�a�?Oh! This will be FUN! A�I think I even remember the rhymes we used to say at recess– Cinderlla, dressed in yellow, went downstairs to– MY LUNGS ARE ON FIRE!a�? After becoming re-accustomed to it, I can now hold a medium speed skip for a whole long play list. A�I have bad runner knees, so I am not a speed jumper, but even a light skip can burn mega calories. A�Depending onA� your weight, and the speed, and the intensity of your skip, you can burn 300-600 calories an hour! A�Jump in your room. A�jump by the pool, or even go for a walk and pause to do a few reps every 5 minutes for an interval workout.
Agility Rope Ladder
I joined a gym class in high-school that was intended for varsity athletes. A�I very quickly fell in love with agility ladder days and still enjoy it to this day. A�Some athletes use it for speed-work drills, (Google: ‘Agility Karaoke’, ‘Agility Shuffle’, ‘Agility Side-to-Side’, to give you an idea) but you can use it for anything. A�I like to think of it as an adult hopscotch game; A�hopscotch with hopping, hopscotch with crab walking, hopscotch with squats, hopscotch with plank positions…Get creative!
Resistance bands are pretty darn amazing. A�There are a variety of types to choose from. A�The one in the photo is a medium resistance (sold in light, medium, or heavy resistance) tube with cushioned foam handles. A�Simple latex stretch bands work just as well, and are very inexpensive. A�I can feel like Hulk, and get a full body workout with just this single resistance tube. A�There are hundreds of easy to find resistance tube/band workouts online, but I will share my favorites in a future post for Fitness Fridays.
Swimsuit & Goggles
Almost every hotel has a pool. A�Dona��t underestimate the power of a pool workout. A�Swimming laps, pool running, doing flutter kicks while holding the wall, and water bicycle crunches are just some of the many easy ways to stay fit in the pool. A�Who cares if you look silly? A�Strap on your goggles, and be Ryan Lochte for a day (maybe keep your brain though). A�Ita��s fun, feels great, and burns calories. A�Just treading water at a moderate pace for an hour burns a minimum of 300 calories (based on weight, and intensity)! Water exercise after a long day of traveling also tends to calm down my body and help me fall asleep easier.
So, if you are thinking to yourself, “I already have a 100% packed suitcase! How can I possibly fit all this stuff, too?” A�Take a peek below to see how easy it is to fit all of this equipment and still have room for clothes, 2 pairs of shoes, a massive toiletries bag, and plenty of fitness inspired reading material.
Next week, my blog post will be all about ‘Kicking It Up a Notch,’ giving tips and advice to those who have a desire to become fit, but need motivation to get started. A�To those already fit fly guys/gals, I will offer a way to improve your fitness, and take it to a higher altitude.
Also– over the next month there will be several exciting give-a-ways on The Flight Attendant Lifea��s Fit Fly Gala��s Fitness Fridays!