How to Get Fit for an Upcoming Trip

A European vacation is the perfect excuse to get in little bit better shape. Our guided vacations and river cruises usually entail 1 – 3 miles of walking per day, so here are some tips for getting in shape before your vacation.

Consult your doctor

Don’t rush into getting in shape. Make a visit to your doctor to find a fitness program or recommendations tailored to you. While visiting your doctor, check if you need any vaccinations for the country you’re visiting.

Set realistic goals

Finding a workout partner can help keep you motivated.

Whether you want to get fit enough to enjoy an upcoming trip or become a world class body builder setting a realistic goal is an important part of the process. Don’t be afraid to set smaller more modest goals to start. It’s easier to create a new goal after achieving smaller ones than it is dealing with the disappointment of falling short of a particularly lofty goal.

A vital part of setting any goal is to identify the reason you want to accomplish it. If your goal is to get in better shape for your trip, reasons for having this goal might be “so that I can enjoy my trip more” or “so that I don’t slow down my wife during our trip”. Understanding why you’ve set a goal will keep you motivated on those days it seems easier to quit.

Make a plan

Once you’ve set you fitness goal, tailor a plan for achieving that goal. It might sound simple, but it will save you from doing activities that don’t align with your goal. This is where a discussion with your doctor can really help. Not sure where to start? Consider discussing these 5 elements of fitness and see what kind of activities your doctor would recommend for each element. 

Find a workout partner

Having someone to workout with will decrease the likelihood that you’ll skip a session. Besides providing much needed accountability, having a workout buddy makes whatever fitness activity you decide on more enjoyable.

Don’t worry about minor setbacks

Everybody experiences setbacks. Don’t let a missed walk or a trip to the pool get you down. The important thing is to not let a minor slip up snowball into a trend.  If you find yourself skipping a lot of sessions it’s probably a good indicator that you need to scale back the activity.

Go for a walk

As walking is the primary activity you’ll engage on while traveling, this is a perfect way to prepare. The benefits of walking are well documented. For example regular walking can, among other things, help you maintain a healthy weight, strengthen your muscles and help your mood. While walking consider the techniques outlined here.

Take the stairs

Experiencing stunning views are a seemingly quintessential part of travel. You’ll be treated to some great views from the comfort of your motorcoach or cruise ship.

Others might require a quick jog up some narrow cathedral stairs or a short jaunt down a bumpy trail. Talking the stairs when available will help ensure you don’t miss out any view.

Invest in a good pair of walking shoes

Comfortable shoes and good socks might be the essential travel item. You can bring a pair of flip-flops, heels or rigid dress shoes for dinners out or your trip to the Molin Rouge but don’t plan on wearing them for most of your trip.

If you don’t own a pair of comfy walking shoes buy a pair a wear them for several weeks leading up to your trip to ensure that they are the right size and to prevent blisters.

Try lifting your suitcase

For most of your trip someone else will handle your luggage (atleast when you travel with us) but you will occasionally have to handle your own luggage. It might sound silly but pack up your suitcase and try lifting it before you leave. You don’t want to grab your suitcase of a carousel or from your trunk to sprain your back.

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