Whether you’re alone, with a partner, with your pets, or with your kids, staycations can be a brilliant alternative to an expensive holiday abroad. I am a huge advocate of spending time exploring your own country, but with an abundance of food, without the security of your gym or exercise class, or hotel gym and free exercise sessions run by the entertainment team, I know it can be hard to remain motivated to keep fit. I’ve been battling with my own fitness for years now, and always used holidays as an excuse to fall out of the habit, but not any more!
1. Choose the healthier options
Depending on where you are staying, you may have the option to self-cater. If that’s the case, treat your holiday like an extension of the home to keep fit: make balanced breakfasts, prepare your lunch, cook a quick and healthy meal. Although, I never stop myself from eating out on a staycation.
If you do end up in a bed and breakfast, or are reliant on dinners at restaurants, choose the healthier options. The biggest faux pas we all make are opting for steaks, desserts and full English breakfasts when there are healthier meals on the menu. White meats and fish can be just as tasty as a steak or sausages, and poached eggs on toast can be as delicious as a bacon sandwich. If there is an option for vegetables instead of potato, take it. Try to limit desserts – if you wouldn’t have a dessert every night at home, why would you need it on holiday?
Sometimes, the healthier option isn’t obvious on the menu, but I’ve always found that if you ask politely, the chefs will substitute for you.
2. Get your walking boots on
With staycations, you know you won’t be spending all your time basking in 27c heat on a sun lounger, so why not get up and active? Yes sitting in a pub garden without a jacket is one of my favourite things to do, but all that level of sloth encourages is eating and drinking.
Instead, why not get your walking boots on and go for a hike in the countryside? The British countryside is undoubtedly glorious, and you’ll be able to find hundreds of circular walks all over the place by scouring the internet for a few hours. What’s more, you have all the luxuries like 4G, sharing the same language, and knowing which number to call in an emergency, on your side, in case the worst happened and you ended up lost on a mountain.
Perhaps a walk around some coastal cliffs would be more appealing. Either way, a long hike is a great way to keep fit.
3. Make time for a morning work out
The HIIT training revolution has completely taken the fitness world by storm. Instead of spending an hour jogging around the streets or jumping up and down to some fast paced dance music in legwarmers, experts say that short bursts of high intensity training are much better for metabolism and fitness.
Or, for something that is good for you but a little less intense, why not take a roll up yoga mat?
You don’t need masses of space for HIIT or yoga, just an area wide enough for some curtsy lunges, burpees, or salutes to the sun, although if the weather is good, it’s always a bit of a treat to do some outdoor exercise to keep fit. Make time for a quick morning work out and you’ll feel energised, not to mention proud of yourself, for the rest of the day.
Youtube have hundreds of great HIIT and yoga videos to use if you’re not sure where to start…
Or, if it’s not your thing, most holiday parks offer sports activities for a small fee, and most leisure centres allow pay as you go swims, so really, there’s no excuse!
Staycations are not a good enough reason to let yourself go for a week or two. Work smart and follow these three steps to keep moving on your fitness journey, even when you’re away from home.