Fitness and Wellness · Uncategorized

Exercises for Safe Travels

Guess what… It’s Travel Tip Tuesday! This week I’ve teamed up with my friend and personal trainer, Cassie, to bring you some tips to keep you safe and strong when you travel. Nothing puts a damper on a trip quite like an injury! See the pictures and instructions below, and repeat each exercise for 3 sets of 8-12 repetitions (reps). Check out Cassie’s website for more fitness and wellness tips at cassiecoxfitness.com.

***Always consult a doctor and a fitness professional before starting a new fitness regimen.

Upper Body

1. Upright Rows: I love these. They are an all-over arm toning exercise that will help you with lifting your luggage. Start with 5 lbs. in each hand, keep your core tight, and pull the weights up to chest level. Hold for a count of 3, and lower.

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Starting Position
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Pull up to chest level
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Side View

2. Bent Over Rows: This exercise will help strengthen your arms, shoulders, and back. Keep your back straight, your core tight, and lean your torso forward.

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Starting Position
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Pull Up, Squeezing Shoulder Blades Together

3. Single-arm Shoulder Press: This one is good for getting your muscles prepared for lifting and lowering luggage. Tighten your core, focus on one side at a time, and think about lifting your bags into the overhead bin of an airplane (or train, or bus), and lowering your bags back down. Keep your core tight and do not lean!

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Starting Position
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Push it up, keep your body straight

Core

 1. Suitcase Carries: This one is aptly named! You’ll do one side at a time, but make sure you stay upright and tighten your core. Do not lean one way or the other! Start with 15 lbs. and increase the weight as you feel comfortable.

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Pick up a weight and walk forward!

2. Plank Up-downs: There are so many plank exercises to try, but this basic one is very effective for your oblique muscles, which keep you upright! Prop yourself up on your elbows and toes in a classic plank position. Then push yourself up with one hand, then the other, trying not to sway as much as possible.

3. Side Plank Fly: This plank variation is good for your sides, all-over stabilizer muscles, and as a bonus you will be working your arms, too. Prop yourself up on your elbow on one side, start with a 5 lb. weight in your free hand, and pull it up. Flex your core to keep from swaying.

Lower Body

 1. Squats: These are great for that behind of yours, as well as your thighs. You will definitely be glad you have a strong behind when traveling because it’ll help you pick things up, climb around ancient ruins, or hiking trails all around the world! Be sure you keep your chest and head upright. Move your butt back, but do not lean forward. You can do these with or without weights. When you stand back up, squeeze your butt!

2. Single-leg Deadlift: This is another one for your behind! It’s good to do some exercises that work only one side of your body at a time so that your dominant side doesn’t over compensate for your weaker side. It’s important to be equally strong on both sides of your body. Do this exercise slowly to get the most out of it. Start on one foot, bend at your waist, keep your back straight and your shoulders square. Squeeze your butt and hamstrings on the way back up!

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Starting Position

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3. Lunges: Lunges are great because of the movements you have to make while doing them. You’re not standing stationary, you’re moving forward or backward. Start standing upright, then step forward and bend your knees, making sure your body stays upright, not bent forward. Push up and put your feet together into the starting position again. Repeat with your other leg. You can also do these backward!

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Something else to keep in mind while you’re gearing up for your summer travel is cardio.  You can’t expect to make your way around beautiful cities on foot if you’re not used to being on your feet and don’t have the stamina to keep going during the day. Shoot for 30-45 minutes of walking, running, biking, or a combination of those just two to three days a week. You’ll be surprised at how much longer you can go when your body gets used to getting a move-on, even just a little more often!

What’s your favorite way to prepare for your travels? Have you ever experienced an injury while traveling?

For more on fitness and travel, check out my posts on Equipment-Free Workouts and Stretch It Out!

3 thoughts on “Exercises for Safe Travels

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