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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Fitness on the Road

If you are like me, missing workouts while traveling can really effect your weight and bug you mentally.  I've been working out for so long it feels like a natural part of my life. In fact, I've been trying to lose weight through exercise for over 20 years now - since the days of....

I loved that dang ribbon baton thing - Wish my workouts these days still involved a ribbon baton.

Mostly when I travel I try to make sure I am booked at a hotel with a gym since running outside in African cities is usually not a pleasant option. However, it's not always easy to find a hotel with a gym in some cities. So, this blog is about what I do if I don't have a gym AND actually about my home workouts right now since I don't belong to a gym in Nairobi anymore. The best thing about working out in your room or at home is you can wear your ugly work out clothes and not worry about it ;-)

1) I have invested in a nice library of work out DVDs.  Many of them you do not even need equipment for. Here's a list of my favorites:
  • Jilian Michaels 30 Day Shred
  • P90X series (I don't do the full program, I just use the DVDs to enhance my workout since minimal equipment is needed).  The YogaX, Kenpo, and Cardio DVDs are really good for hotel room work outs.
  • 20 Minute Windsor Pilates
  • Personal Training with Jackie Warner (You need hand weights)
2)  If I know I'm going somewhere with no gym, I bring my resistance bands. They are easy to pack and carry with you and you can find suggestions online for various workouts using the bands.
The type of resistance bands I use

3) Use of the internet.  I use the internet a TON for my work outs. There are loads of youtube videos that are like mini workouts that you can do at home or in a hotel room. I also make use of an Online Interval Timer that I found. It helps for doing bootcamp interval workouts.
My newest obsession is this eastern european muscle naughty chick named Zuzana that posts work out routines almost every day. Her American husband, Freddy, films her doing an intense bootcamp style work out and then she takes you through each move and motivates you to keep "bodyrocking".  She actually has a ton of fans and I do make fun of her, but I actually truly love her and her slutty workout outfits because in sort of gives me something to work towards. Visit her site - BodyRock TV.  Best of all it's free, her workouts are usually less than 20 minutes, and they are so hard they will make you beg for your mommy and a diaper change. Serg and I laugh every time I play her workouts cause she starts every video by saying "Hi botyrokas!".  Or at least that's how it sounds with the Czech accent.
This is BodyRocker Queen Zuzanna

4) Improvise.  You can usually create work out equipment with stuff laying around your house or hotel room. For example, the bodyrock work outs often use a big sandbag weight.  So, I was in the middle of no where in Senegal trying to get my work out in. I filled up a few empty 2 liter water bottles that I had and stuffed my backpack with them and it worked out perfectly. It was like 20 pounds of weight. I put the back pack on and did lunges and I used it to do dead lifts and bent over rows. It worked pretty well. Some of her work outs also call for a bosu ball. I don't have one but at my house I have a semi deflated soccer ball that I was able to use for push ups and other exercises. Here is an example of using stuff you have laying around as work out equipment:
Homemade pull up bar and bosu ball
I did squats over the rump of Ellie the Elephant

Okay, so now you have no excuses! Enjoy your workout - The sooner you start the sooner it will be over!

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