Checking In, Working Out

By Anna Sachse

Posted October 22, 2008 in Mind Body Spirit

I am currently sitting in the Hilton Garden Inn in Toledo/Perrysburg, Ohio, feeling fat. I am here for a wedding, which means my days and nights are made up mostly of eating and drinking. It’s not a bad life, but I don’t feel very good, probably as a consequence of the tequila/spicy tater tots combo I had for dinner late last night because I’m staying at a hotel and the only place open after my late arrival was arguably the world’s lamest sports bar (I would also argue that “lame sports bar” is redundant, but you get my drift). Getting a little exercise will help me get some of this crap out of my system, feel energized for the rehearsal dinner later tonight and maybe avoid the weight gain that comes with three solid days of events that center on eating things like mountains of cheese cubes and cake.

And because I’m thinking about it, that means you’re going to hear about it because this advice applies to anyone who is traveling, staying in hotels and would like to at least maintain their current fitness level if at all possible. All it takes is 30 minutes.

I’ve got three options for you.

The first is pretty basic. If the hotel has a gym and you have brought along anything that resembles workout clothes, go use it. The equipment is probably limited in both quantity and quality, but it will get the job done. Spend 30 minutes jogging on the treadmill to burn around 300 calories, or 15 minutes on the Stairmaster to burn a little over 100 calories and 15 minutes lifting weights to build muscle and improve tone. If they have a pool and you brought your swimsuit, swim laps for 30 minutes and you’ll burn about 280 calories.

Your second option, if they don’t have a gym but you remembered to pack your running shoes and a sports bra if applicable, is to walk out the door and run if you are in a safe enough area. Cruising down city blocks or through parks on foot is actually a great way to explore your surroundings and be a part of whatever city you’re visiting. Consider it recon for whatever else you’re doing later that day. Run 15 minutes away from the hotel and then retrace your footsteps. Or just walk as quickly as you can for 30 minutes and you’ll burn about 120 calories.

The third option—if your hotel has no gym and the area where you are located isn’t safe for running or walking and/or you don’t have the proper workout attire—is the in-room workout. In this workout, your calorie burn will probably be on the lower side (due to the lack of cardio and the fact that your only resistance is your own body weight), but it will still get your heart rate going, improve muscle tone and increase flexibility. Repeat the following moves in sequence with little or no break in between, as many times as you can in 30 minutes: 10 jumping jacks (unless it will piss off your downstairs neighbor); 20 mountain climbers (bent over, hands on the floor, then kicking legs out behind you as fast as you can); 10 squats; walking lunges across the room and back, five times; 10 tricep dips using a stable chair, desk or coffee table; 15 pushups even if you have to do them on your knees; and 20 crunches. It may sound like a simple workout, but keep it up for 30 minutes and you’ll feel it the next day.

You’ll also feel less guilty about all those nasty Goldschläger shots with the bridesmaids.


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