How to handle vacation

It’s the time of year when many of us are planning summer vacations, a chance to step out of the daily grind, change our environment and try new things. 

But for the health-conscious among us, it can also feel like walking a tightrope. Overdo it on the treats and lazy days, and you risk undoing months of hard work. Stay too restrictive, and you miss out on the whole point of a getaway.

The key, as usual, is balance. A vacation doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing proposition when it comes to your wellness. With some simple strategies, you can thoroughly enjoy yourself while still sticking to your healthy habits…mostly.

First up, don’t take a complete break from exercise. I’m not saying you need to squeeze in a two-hour gym session daily (unless that’s your idea of fun?). But do make an effort to incorporate movement – a hike, bike ride, or just a morning walk to explore your surroundings. Even 10-15 minutes of bodyweight exercises in your hotel room can go a long way.

Speaking of hotel rooms, choose one with a fridge and microwave if possible. This allows you to keep fresh fruits, veggies, and other healthy snacks on hand for when hunger strikes between bigger meals. I’m a big fan of packing a shaker bottle with protein powder for a nutrient-dense shake on the go.

And about those bigger meals? Don’t stress over making perfect choices 100% of the time. If you spend your entire trip obsessing over every bite, is it really a vacation? Embrace the local cuisine, have that decadent dessert, but balance it with making smart, filling choices for other meals.

Finally, prioritize your sleep. Vacations are meant to be rejuvenating, not exhausting. There’s no need to go-go-go from dawn until you drop. Getting quality rest will help keep your energy up to truly enjoy your time away.

The bottom line: A little indulgence and a few missed workouts won’t undo you. But with some simple tweaks, you can avoid a total health relapse and return refreshed, not regretful.