After a long day of travel, you plop your luggage on its stand and faster than superman in a phone booth you are in your workout gear. There were signs for a fitness room and you follow with anticipation only to discover...the converted closet with dim lighting, a decrepit treadmill with purple and pink writing and a classic nordic track skier (I thought the sign said "fitness room" not "museum")There could be a number of roadblocks from inadequate equipment, machines all occupied, equipment out of order, air conditioning broken...all making the most prominent sign you remember now the happy hour advertisement.
Fear Not! The best way to insure your workout against travel traps is a solid hotel room workout. For the most part, you should be able to control temperature, lighting, and even some furniture rearranging. The key is to already know your workout. Dwindling day end motivation mixed with frustration is not the best time to learn something new or to simply throw some random moves together.
Here are some of my favorite resources for Hotel Room Workouts:
#1 Insanity This series is not for the faint of heart- it is drill after drill of drenching sweat. Even if you are starting out and modifying most of the moves these workouts are challenging. There are only a few lateral moves that easily fit in the area from the door past the bathroom. If you carry a laptop you can easily watch or you can shrink the videos to fit on a smart phone or mp3 player. Some people are fans of P90X but I personal prefer a more continuous flowing workout with increased difficulty modifications.
#2 TurboFire For folks that are used to a group exercise class format, these videos are amazing. Chalene takes the classic moves we were all certified with a decade ago and, well, punches them up. Musicality and 32 count format are fancy words to describe Chalene as an experienced and high quality program creator. I cannot tell you for years how many of my friends workout videos I have sat through while politely trying to hide a cringe. TurboFire is my number one but I understand that choreography nay not be for everyone.
#3 20 Minute Hotel Workout For those who do not want to spend money, there are many free printed workouts you can bring with you. The key, again, is having already performed the workout a few times so that you do not have to waste time remembering move names. Without music or cuing it can be an even greater challenge to stay on track. This post is great because when you practice it you can easily link to videos to clarify or expand on descriptions. Mens Health also has a number of online resources.
Make it your mission this week to find one full body, no equipment workout that will work in or around hotel furniture and practice it! You may have to suffer through some duds until you find 'the one' but make the commitment. The next time to head down to the gym and a guy who looks like Dwight from the The Office who appears to be watching a documentary on beet farming and will not stop trying to make small talk with you- you'll be glad you did!