Don’t get me wrong, holidays are meant for eating, drinking and general indulgence. I’m not about to tell you to track your calories or steer completely clear of alcohol; but instead give you my top tips to ensure you feel your absolute best throughout your holiday; not just for the first 3 hours. Otherwise, what was the point of eating salad for lunch every day for the past 6 weeks and all those sweaty hours spent in the gym?!
1. Stay active.
Each day, try and complete 1 hour of activity. This could be hiking, swimming or even playing volleyball on the beach. Also, for every hour spent lying on the sun bed, try and go for a 10 minute walk or a quick dip in the pool.
2. Start the day with 1 litre of water and a cup green tea.
Not only will this kick-start your metabolism, but it will also stop you from over-eating at breakfast. Why? A lot of the time we think we are hungry when we are really de-hydrated. Don’t like green tea? Opt for a black coffee instead.
2. Eat a bigger breakfast.
No, unfortunately I don’t mean a giant stack of pancakes. Choose more filling, nutritious options that are high in protein such as eggs, wholegrain bread, cereals, yoghurt and fruits. This will ensure you stay full until lunchtime and avoid that mid-morning tummy grumble.
3. Snack on fruit
Most hotels will have breakfast buffets, so stock up in the morning and grab some fresh fruit on the way out. Not only does this allow you to try new and local tropical delights, but also saves you money. Therefore, if you do require an 11 o’ clock pick-me-up, you won’t be having to rely on the limited beach bar menu (although even I find it difficult to say no to a giant bag of Ruffles or a choccy milkshake).
4. Plan a couple of 15 minute HIIT workouts to take with you
These can be done in a gym, on the beach or even in your hotel room. I find having a quick sweat-sesh first thing in the morning or pre-dinner makes me feel so much better and like I deserve that extra plate of food at the buffet! You can find some example workouts over on my Instragram @mybusinessbody.
5. Pack a resistance band
Resistance bands are cheap, easy to pack and offer an alternative workout if you’re not feeling up to cardio in 35 degree heat. They’re also extremely versatile and can be used for working almost every major muscle group. Again, you can find some example workouts over on my Instagram page.
6. Pack dark chocolate
Personally, I don’t go anywhere far without a bar or two of Lindt Dark Chocolate with Sea Salt. I always crave something sweet after every meal and having a square or two usually satisfies me if I can resist an ice cream sundae or tiramisu.
7. Pack protein bars
Whilst not always the healthiest, protein bars do keep you full and make good snacks between meals, stop you from reaching for a bag of crisps or chocolate bar, and help you to save money. Take a look at my post here to see my favourites.
8. Choose a smaller plate at the buffet
From personal experience, buffets are where all the damage is done when it comes to overeating on holiday. My top tip for beating the buffet is choose a small plate. You may still go back for more, but chances are you will have less food on your plate and will be more inclined to stick to 1-2 dishes rather than all 157 options available.
9. Eat intuitively
Use intuition and macro-tracking experience to make better choices at meal times. In other words, use common sense. Have you had enough protein today? Was lunch a bowl of cheesy chips and pint of beer? I find that when I am on holiday, more of my calories come from carbs (alcohol, bread, fruit etc.). Therefore at dinner, I try and choose lower-carb, higher-protein dishes such as salads, fish and vegetables.
10. Try and avoid the sugar-saturated cocktails
Don’t get me wrong, I find it hard to say no to an ice-cold mojito at 4pm as the sun begins to go down, but these cocktails are often pumped with sugar syrups in order to disguise the use of cheap spirits. Instead of your usual Sex on The Beach or Long Island Ice Tea, opt for a vodka soda lime or rum and diet coke. And remember – drink at least one glass of water in between every alcoholic drink.
What are your top tips for staying fit and healthy on holiday? Comment down below!