How to Stay Healthy While Traveling

  • Copy by: Reema Desai

“I really need to detox after that trip.” Who hasn’t uttered some version of this phrase at some point after a particularly indulgent vacation? When traveling, trying new foods, and exploring new places, it’s completely natural to treat yourself to a little more than you normally would (and you should!) while traveling. Instead of stressing about it all, we’ve put together a few easy steps that will make not only your travels but your return home a whole lot easier and healthier.

1. Always Bring a Reusable Water Bottle

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From start to finish, a reusable water bottle will be endlessly useful while traveling. As soon as you get through the airport security line, fill up your bottle at the nearest water fountain to make sure you stay hydrated on the plane. Continue the practice by filling it up before leaving your hotel each day—then you won’t need to buy an expensive bottle on-the-go when parched from all your sightseeing.

We tend to indulge a bit on the finer things in life (ahem, like wine) when we travel, and staying hydrated is key to not spending your trip dehydrated or sick. Simple steps like emptying your water glass from lunch into your reusable bottle or drinking a big glass when you wake up will help you stay hydrated and refreshed, especially if you find yourself indulging in alcohol or rich foods when traveling.

2. Adopt a Go To Travel Exercise Routine

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If you love traveling and enjoy doing it often, taking time to find a workout routine that is easy and adaptable for you to do in a hotel room, on a beach, or in a small hotel gym is a game changer. And commit to it each time you travel! This prevents the “How can I exercise while traveling?” conundrum, and simplifies the entire process.

This routine as well as this one provide two great options to consider, but make sure to choose something based on the exercises you actually like doing! Runners and joggers, use travel as an opportunity to change up your route. Because really, what is cooler than a running path that takes you by the Eiffel Tower? If you’re more of a yogi or prefer mat exercises, save your favorite workout videos on your phone or tablet so that you can access them anywhere. Easy and painless!

3. Commit to (at least) One Fresh and Healthy Meal Daily

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We fully admit to wanting to try every new food our eyes see while traveling. And there isn’t anything wrong with experiencing all the amazing dishes a new city or country can offer, but having several heavy meals a day can be hard on the body! Curb the big heavy meals by planning for at least one meal a day that is healthful.

Many places you visit will have outstanding local markets where you can pick up fresh local produce, meats, grains, and seafood. If you’re staying in an apartment, an Airbnb, or even a hotel with a small kitchen, try to prepare fresh dishes with ingredients from a local market for a night or two. Of course, cooking isn’t an option on every trip so for those times when you’ll be eating in restaurants regularly, opt for vegetarian meals, choose grilled options over fried, and work in the occasional salad. This can all make a big difference even if it’s just one meal a day.

4. Keep Snacks Handy

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Head to a market or grocery store when you first arrive in a new city to stock up on good snacks to keep stashed in your bag while traveling. Beyond the obvious that you’ll avoid being hangry (hungry plus angry) on your trip, there are many other benefits, too! Because food is one of the greatest ways to learn a new city, peruse the local offerings to get a better sense of the place you’re in. It’s incredible how much food can vary when you find yourself in a new country so this idea is especially helpful if you’re traveling internationally.

While keeping a snack or two handy is generally good advice even when at home, this is particularly crucial during traveling as you’ll often be on the go and walking more than usual.

5. Stick to Your Routines

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Staying healthy while traveling isn’t just about eating well and getting in the occasional workout. Little things like skincare routine, vitamin regimen, and mental health should all be considered while traveling, too. It’s easy to consider travel time as off-time from taking care of yourself in the usual way, but practicing total health during your trip will make your vacation all the more enjoyable.

If you take regular vitamins or medications, be sure to pack them in a travel container so that you can take them with you without taking up precious space in your suitcase. Though skin and hair care products can come in large bottles, pack them in leak proof, TSA friendly bottles to make sure you have everything you need. If you schedule time to meditate or take time to yourself, make sure you do the same while traveling. Despite what you may think, keeping up with these routines won’t add undue restrictions to your trip. On the contrary, they’ll allow you to feel your best while traveling.