There are many articles and blogs that provide great advice on the “how to” of traveling while fit. A search for information will uncover suggestions in regards to exercises, travel friendly equipment, healthy food selections and finding a hotel that suits fitness needs. Being armed with knowledge and preparation are definitely actions that increase odds of being successful during travel.
What happens when fitness planning and preparation is a bust?
My recent business trip is a perfect example of traveling fitness plans gone bad.
Planning the business trip, I booked a hotel with a fitness center and planned to arrive early enough the day before my meeting to workout. After the workout, I’d grab something healthy to eat then rest up for my meeting the next day. The goal was to make healthy choices throughout the day, from food selections at the airport, to daily meals. I would tweet and Facebook about my success as an example to my clients and friends on how to travel and stay fit. The plan was solid – so I thought.
The week of my trip, I had no time to shop, pack or organize. I went to bed the night before very late and exhausted with approximately three hours of sleep. I pushed the snooze button several times, rushed out of the house with no food or snacks and arrived to the airport late with time only to purchase an obnoxiously expensive fruit cup. After a 2 hour flight and only a small bowl of fruit, I reached the hotel with my stomach feeling as if it were reverting to cannibalism. The only objective was to seek food and destroy hunger pains.
Setting off on foot, I ended up on “fast food row.” This was definitely not in the plan. I settled for a burger joint and spotted a chicken salad on the menu. Ending a brutal war between my intention and my stomach, my stomach ordered a burger and fries. Feeling utterly defeated, I headed back to my hotel to eat. I passed by the “fitness facility,” which was one piece of equipment in a room small enough to evoke my sense of claustrophobia, hung my head and walked the hall of shame to my room.
The result of my skillful planning was water retention, an upset stomach and bruised ego. Perhaps the lesson in this failure was to realize life and fitness are not perfect.
My next trip I call “Traveling While Fit – the Remix,” will be a much better experience.