Exercise & holidays don’t mix – or do they? 1 December 2013 How many times have you come home from a great holiday to find that your pants are a lot tighter than when you left? Holidays are important for relaxing and unwinding but it doesn’t mean that your health should be left at the door completely. Sampling the local cuisine and lounging by the pool can quickly lead to weight gain. Being active can help to prevent this. Here are some tips to get you moving on your next holiday: Make holiday exercise enjoyable â€“ exercising on holidays doesn’t have to be a chore, take a brisk walk along the beach or swim in the ocean or hotel pool. Be active without exercising â€“ even small changes in your daily habits can make a difference. For example, take the hotel stairs instead of the escalator. Get on your bike â€“ taking a bicycle or walking tour is a great way to see the sights and keep fit at the same time. Take your walking shoes â€“ make sure you take comfortable shoes to sightsee or walk around the shops â€“ you’ll feel less obliged to take transport. Check if your hotel has a gym â€“ if you don’t want to break your gym routine completely or if you think your holiday will be quite inactive, a hotel with a gym or swimming pool can make exercising very convenient. Pack your own equipment â€“ small gym equipment items are handy on holidays, such as a skipping rope or Theraband (elastic exercise band) or instead you could use your body weight for exercises like lunges and sit ups in your room or on the beach. Book an adventure holiday â€“ an active holiday such as skiing, water rafting or mountain hiking is a sure way to keep the kilos at bay. Make use of the activities on offer â€“ many resorts have activities included such as snorkelling, beach volley ball, sea kayaking or surfing. Get to know your way around â€“ get a map of the local area so you can go for a walk or jog and maybe even pass some historical land marks. Some large resorts have jogging tracks within their landscaped gardens. Also, try to be mindful of your calories. Buffets, all-inclusive resorts and cruise ships where food is available all day and night are traps for eating much more than you need. See our article, ‘Avoiding holiday weight gain’ for more tips on keeping in shape on your next break.