If you’re one of the 9.7 million people in the UK with a gym membership,1 and you have a consistent training schedule, chances are you’re wondering how to prevent summer holiday weight gain and stay active while abroad. Or, if you’ve been steadily losing pounds as part of a healthy diet plan, you may be asking yourself “how can I lose weight whilst on holiday?”
It’s a real problem – according to a survey by Flora pro.activ and Obesimed,2 79 percent of you put on weight whilst on holiday, with the average person gaining around eight pounds over the course of a two-week trip. America with its Florida resort came out top as the worst place for summer holiday weight gain, while Spain wasn’t far behind with an average six-pound weight gain.
And it’s not surprising. All-inclusive buffets plus alcohol often mean self-control and portion size go out the window, and who doesn’t want to treat themselves and get the most for their money? But before you know it, those pastries at breakfast, chips at lunch and chocolate torte for your post-dinner pudding, have clocked up almost double the amount of calories you should consume in a day.
Add to that the lack your usual gym or personal trainer to motivate you to burn off those excess calories, and it’s a recipe for disaster. Even modest weight gain was shown in a study by the Mayo Clinic to damage blood vessels and have cardiovascular implications.3
“No one (well, maybe a handful of people) wakes up in the morning pumped for their workout,” says Healthspan personal trainer Nicola Addison. “For most of us – myself included – it requires effort and discipline. The reality is we have to take responsibility and we have to do something – at the end of the day, no one can exercise for you.”
When it comes to training while abroad, that often means viewing exercise from a different perspective. Activities such as walking, swimming, cycling and even dancing are all readily available calorie-burners. You don’t even need to lose hours to benefit. A ten-minute swim can burn more than 100 calories; while a leisurely cycle, brisk walk, or disco dancing uses around 50 calories.4 The NutriCoach Activity Tracker provides an effortless way of monitoring your movement, calories burnt and more.
And don’t underestimate the benefits of using your own body weight for strengthening and toning resistance work. According to a study by the University of Sydney, it can reduce your risk of early death by around 20 percent.5 Look around your hotel room and you’ll find it has all the equipment you need to create your own bespoke workout of body-blasting circuits. That chair in the corner, for example, is perfect for performing tricep dips, single leg squats and box jumps. The bathroom wall – ideal for holding glute-strengthening wall sits. And lay down a towel on the floor and you can perform crunches, planks or even a stretching and relaxing yoga flow.
Still in need of some hotel room workout inspiration? Let these fitness professionals guide you through their own favourite routines – regardless of how much time you have to spare, there’s one to suit you. No more excuses.
Three hotel room workouts to try on holiday
1. 300 Bodyweight Workout
The premise is simple: do 100 pull-ups, 100 body-weight squats and 100 push-ups plus “bird dogs”. The result: a total body muscle-building routine that’s guaranteed to give you stronger abs, glutes and arms by the time you fly home.
2. 16-Minute Hotel HIIT Workout
Joe Wicks, aka The Body Coach, shares a low-impact, no-noise circuit of eight full-body toning exercises such as squats and mountain climbers that can be carried out in just over 15 minutes.
3. 10-Minute Hotel Room Bodyweight Workout
Proof that you don’t need a lot of time to torch calories – or a gym full of equipment. Using just a chair, target every muscle group with chair jumps, oblique crunches, single leg squats and ab lifts. Don’t even have 10 minutes? Simply do the circuit once.
4. Figures based on https://www.nutracheck.co.uk/Home calculations