Most people put on weight whilst on their summer breaks, and while it's great to let your hair down every now and then, it can also prove difficult to get back on track with your healthy eating and exercise.
I want to share with you my holiday diary, which will give you some great ideas on how to integrate exercises in your holiday - so you'll come home in the same, or even better shape after your holiday.
Day 1 - Listen To Your Body
We had an early start on our way to Nice, South of France (5am!) and after a busy couple of days working in Ibiza, I felt exhausted upon arrival. It's really important to listen to your body, so you should avoid training if you are genuinely exhausted.
Many people find they actually seem slimmer when they've rested - this is because under stress your body produces a hormone called cortisol, which can cause your body to hold on to fat around your tummy. So, make sure that rest is a part of your exercise programme. My first day was spent horizontal on the beach, catching up on sleep, drinking plenty of water and eating salads which are easy to digest when tired.
Day 2 - Run To See More
After a good 10 hours sleep and another day on the beach, I was keen to get moving. Most people find that when they make exercise a regular part of their lives, they actually miss it and feel less energised they laze around for too long.
So once the heat of the sun had eased off a little, my fiancé and I laced up our shoes and ran along the seafront and around the port of Nice.
Running or brisk walking around a new country is a great way to see things that you might not normally see on holiday, and we enjoyed the scenery so much that we ended up running almost 10k. Afterwards we stripped down to shorts and underwear and plunged into the sea, which felt amazing after a hot, sweaty run.
Day 3 - Count Your Fit Steps
Another gorgeous day on the Riviera. Today we visited a different area, and although we spent a good part of the day on the beach, we were pleased to discover we'd covered more than 12,000 steps. A pedometer is a great tool to track your activity, and walking 10,000 steps a day is recommended by the NHS as a great way to burn calories, build stamina and improve your heart health.
I used Fitbug, which is a great pedometer that gives you your daily foot steps and enables you to track your calories consumed and burnt. Visit Fitbug for more details.
Day 4 - Workout in Deep Waters
Today we joined friends on another part of the coast and enjoyed a day spent mostly in the sea. If you are on holiday on the coast, try walking back and forth in waist deep water for a great lower body and cardio workout.
After a relaxing day, we laced up our trainers again and headed out for another run - this time only around 5k, followed by some resistance work such as squats and dips. You don't need any equipment to keep your muscles in good shape - use a chair or a bench to perform triceps dips and do press-ups for your upper body, whilst squats and walking lunges will keep your lower body toned. Aim for 2 sets of 15 of each exercise.
Day 5 - Eat Local
Another day exploring new beaches meant another 10,000 footsteps today, plus plenty of lying on the beach munching delicious cold watermelon. If you're in a warm country, make the most of fresh local foods such as fruits, fish and salads. The French diet contains plenty of lean protein such as steak and fish, plus plenty of green salads - perfect foods for staying in great shape.
Day 6 - Complete Your Workout
Last day of the holiday, so a nice long day on the beautiful beach at Ville Franches. We did plenty of swimming today, but other than that a day of complete rest.
We didn't have to be at the airport until 10am, so set the alarm for 7am (a bit of a shock after 6 lazy mornings!) and headed out for a quick sunrise workout. The coast looks very different in the early morning light, and the short half hour jog felt really invigorating. We used a bench by the seaside for some quick dips and squats, before a nice stretch and then the last breakfast before flying home.
Read more posts from Caroline Sandry at Body in Balance.
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