Have Weight Will Travel

If only you could pack your free weights or your gym’s weight room into your suitcase then you’d never have to worry whether or not your hotel or resort is fitness friendly. The good news is that, in a way, you can. Every single one of us comes with our own built-in weight training system – the human body. With a few simple-to-pack items and a little creativity, you can take your weight and resistance workout on the road, without paying any extra charges for a heavy bag.

Got an extra belt? Then you’ve also got a good tool for a reverse bench press. Simply loop the belt over the closet hanging rod or towel bar (be sure to check it for stability a few times before trusting it with your whole body weight). Then, stand holding one end of the belt in each hand, with your body about an arm’s length from the rod or bar. Hold your arms out to either side, bent at the elbows at 90-degree angles. Then, slowly lean back with legs straight, balancing on heels until your weight is supported between the bar and your arms. Pull up towards the bar, as you would a bench press and return to starting position. Do 6-8 reps. For a modified version that engages shoulders and triceps straighten arms and pull up by stretching arms outward while keeping arms straight, return to center by slowly moving straight arms back to parallel.

That chair in your hotel room makes a great base for tricep dips. It also makes a nice elevated footrest for incline push-ups and sit ups. If you have a few bungee cords lying around your garage or if you have some resistance bands, roll them up in your suitcase and you’ll be able to work virtually every muscle group. Lay flat on your back with your knees curled toward your chest. Loop the band or bungee of your choice over the soles of your shoes. Keep your elbows against your body with forearms perpendicular to the floor. Press legs out towards straight, as you would with leg press machine in the gym. Repeat as desired, adding additional bands or folding bungees to increase resistance.

You may not get the exact same results as the gym, particularly if you’re doing high-weight reps, but your modified travel routine will be a much better alternative that abandoning your workout all together. What’s more, because you’ll be performing exercises in a non-isolated format, you’ll also be engaging your balance and core muscles more than you would with a muscle-isolated machine workout.


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