Sunscreen, Tickets, and Gym Clothes?

Summer break is here, and for many people that means vacation. Even though vacation should be a time of relaxation, it can be stressful to break a routine, especially if you are used to a specific diet or exercise schedule. I am one of those people that struggle with this; however, there can be a lot of joy found in embracing new opportunities. The key is making the best out of whatever situation you find yourself in. In all honesty, I still feel anxiety when eating out if I have no idea what the nutritional information of the food is. My heart says, “Get in my belly!”, and my brain exclaims, “but what about the macros?”. In these situations, I have to break into my thoughts and respond with confidence:

“One meal, one day, or one week does not define you. Even your physical body does not define you. What defines you is how you choose to respond and interpret the world.”

The memories that can be formed over meals, tasty treats, and periods of rest outlive any lingering calories or extra weight. That being said, you don’t have to order the worst item on a menu or sit in one place all day. I still find myself thinking about one of the salads I had while in Dublin, Ireland at the Gourmet Burger Kitchen.


Strength can also be found in the search for unexpected ways to achieve goals in a different setting. On my last trip, I found myself in a hotel gym about the size of my small apartment bathroom that was equipped with a limited amount of dumbbells, a stationary bike, and a treadmill. I had no idea how much the dumbbells weighed because as a silly American, I couldn’t convert kilograms to pounds. To me they were not so heavy, heavier, and not gonna happen heavy. Anyways, I was able to crank out killer workouts doing high intensity circuits along with simple dumbbell movements. One of them consisted of however many spurts of 10 burpees, 10 dumbbell cleans, 25 jumping jacks, and 10 crunches I could complete in a 10 minute window. Trust me, this will get your heart pumping. If you don’t believe me, just look at how rough I look in the elevator directly following it (fun fact: my key card broke right after I took this picture and a kind worker helped my sweaty self get back into my room).


I found the challenge to come up with new combinations refreshing, and I felt like I deserved the reward of delicious food and relaxation throughout the rest of the day rather than feeling guilt. People say your home is wherever you are, and I think this can apply to your gym too.

Ultimately, if you end up feeling at peace at the end of your trip whether you worked out or not, then it was a success. Vacation should be something that should be looked forward to rather than dreaded. There is so much out in the world to go do and see. If you get one thing out of this post, please get this:

Our health and fitness goals should not be preventing us from exploring; they should inspire and enable our bodies to go out and do more.

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