Girls on the go: you know what I mean when I say it can be tough to stick to a regular workout routine when you are traveling. If you are going from city to city and are unsure if you will have access to a gym, don't stress! There are so many different ways you can get a good workout in regardless if you have a full gym at your fingertips.
Sure, you could pack your own dumbbells to crank out a strength training session in your hotel room, but let's be real: the last thing you want to do is lug around 10 pound dumbbells in your carry on suitcase across the airport. Cross that idea off the list (and save that space in your suitcase for a few extra pairs of shoes).
You need equipment that is lightweight, compact, and effective. First and foremost, your bodyweight is one of the most powerful pieces of gym equipment you have - and you ALWAYS have it with you! Exercises like burpees, mountain climbers, push-ups, bicycle crunches, bodyweight squats, split lunge jumps, plank variations, etc. are some of the most effective moves you can do using only your bodyweight. One major benefit of bodyweight exercises is that they often engage more than one muscle group, resulting in a super effective workout.
However, that's not to say you can't get creative and use different pieces of equipment in your routine. If you feel like you just need a little extra resistance in your workouts on the go, that's where these four super travel-friendly items come in handy.
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1. Resistance Bands
Resistance bands are an AMAZING tool to have packed away in your suitcase. Not only are they super affordable, but they can be folded to take up virtually no space in your bags. You can use resistance bands to up the intensity of your bodyweight workouts and target pretty much every major muscle group in the body. They are so versatile it's INSANE! Check out the resistance band toning workout video below if you're in need of a routine.
2. Jump Rope
No treadmill, no problem! If you're stuck inside without any cardio equipment, a jump rope can be your new BFF. Just like the resistance bands, jump ropes are super easy to fold up and pack away in your suitcase without taking up very much space. Find an area with a high ceiling and plenty of room around you and try this quick jump rope only HIIT routine:
As always, make sure you are warmed up and ready to go before beginning this workout. This workout is a suggestion only - always consult with your doctor before starting any exercise program.
0:00 - 1:00 | JOG IN PLACE
1:00 - 2:00 | JUMP ROPE FOR SPEED
2:00 - 2:30 | JOG IN PLACE
2:30 - 3:00 | MOUNTAIN CLIMBERS
3:00 - 4:00 | JUMP ROPE: SINGLE LEG (R)
4:00 - 5:00 | JUMP ROPE: SINGLE LEG (L)
5:00 - 5:30 | JOG IN PLACE
5:30 - 6:00 | BURPEES
REPEAT EACH ROUND 3 TIMES
Cool down + stretch
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3. Dish Towels
Sometimes you can find common household items that can double as gym equipment - like dish towels. These can be used in so many different ways, but mountain climbers (shown in the video below) are one of my favorite moves to add dish towels to for an even greater challenge. Mountain climbers are a great exercise to target your core and get your heart rate up for a quick burst of cardio. When you add dish towels underneath your feet, your core becomes even more engaged in order to maintain balance and stability. These are best done on a hard surface (like hardwood or tile) but if you only have carpet, all you have to do is slide a couple of paper plates underneath the dish towels to get the same effect. Again, these are SO convenient to throw in your suitcase and use in a pinch, but even if you forget to pack some before you leave, chances are your hotel will have wash cloths already in the room.
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4. Portable Kettlebells
It's not quite as practical to pack heavy weights or kettlebells in your suitcase (if you pack like I do, your luggage is already heavy enough). You can definitely use items like backpacks or purses as resistance, but portable kettlebells allow you to fill them with sand or water to adjust them to your desired weight. Once you finish your workout, you can empty the bag and fold it up to pack in your suitcase.
These portable kettlebells are from PKBFit:
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What pieces of gym equipment do you like to pack in your suitcase? Head over to my latest Instagram post @samanthabowers_ and let me know your favorites!