A question I get asked quite often is, “how do you exercise and eat well when you travel so much?” If you’re in the oil and gas industry, there’s a good chance you travel a fair bit for your work. This can certainly take its toll so to help me stay on track I always stick to the following hacks.
Pre-planning & exercise
Before you travel, find out what fitness facilities the hotel you will be staying at has. At the very least, you will (hopefully) find a small fitness centre or gym. Do they have a swimming pool, sauna, steam room or tennis courts perhaps that you could take advantage of? Finding this information out in advance will help you plan your workouts around your meetings and workload. If your hotel doesn’t have any fitness facilities, have a look within the vicinity for a local gym where you could sign up for a day pass. Check with your hotel’s front desk for recommended gyms as they often have special discounted rates they could provide you with. When all else fails, see what parks are nearby where you could run or exercise in the open air. Better yet, ask a colleague if they would like to join you for that run!
When eating away from home, it’s sometimes difficult to eat well as we can’t cook or prepare the food ourselves and we don’t know the full list of ingredients being used. Before traveling to a new country, find out what foods are offered as part of the local cuisine. This is especially useful if you have certain dietary requirements but will also provide a good understanding of the options you’ll have (or not have) and whether you need to plan ahead and bring your own healthy snacks from home.
After lots of trips to both the Eastern and Western hemispheres of the world, I found that the best way to master the beast that is jet lag is severalfold.
Stay active on the flight with inflight exercises. Improved circulation will help you get over your jet lag faster and will help with any swelling you may have. After a long haul flight, I always try to walk a while (immediately after coming off the flight) or do a quick exercise session in the hotel gym. Exercise will help boost your endorphins and make you feel better.
Drink lots of water before and during the flight. Due to the reduced humidity in the aircraft you can become dehydrated and your skin can become dry and flaky. I usually take a big bottle of water with me. Also, stay away from alcohol and caffeine as these will increase dehydration and will have a negative impact on your recovery time.
Eat your meals in line with your new time zone. This will help you adjust both mentally and physically. Try to just adapt to the time zones of the country you’re in and not think about the fact that you should be having your breakfast when you’re eating your dinner!
Another tip is to do intermittent fasting. This has gained quite a lot of traction lately and I will do a longer post on it. Stay tuned!
When traveling, everything boils down to your mindset. We come out of our normal routine and might not have access to the same things we do at home or be used to certain foods, but I guarantee there is always something positive you will learn about new cultures (if not about yourself) and great experiences you can take away from your time away from home.
Finally, being healthy and fit shouldn’t be a short-term goal. For me, when I’m eating right and exercising, I feel at my best and happiest. Think about your current lifestyle and how this can be adapted for when you travel. You don’t need an excessive routine for a balanced body and mind. But, whatever you do choose, it should be consistent and sustainable and suit YOUR lifestyle.
Have a great day!
Follow Beri on Instagram @Beri_Fit
Beri is a health and fitness enthusiast and qualified personal trainer. She helps the busy and successful career woman who travels learn how to fully optimize herself in mindset and fitness, and how to develop a healthy body and attitude. She’s based and lives in London and currently works for SPE (Society of Petroleum Engineers).