(7 minute read)
This blog post coincides with THIS VIDEO on fitness, travel, money & minimalism and is all about how to keep the bod’ tight (and the budget), whilst travelling.
Rule one: you’re travelling carry-on only, especially as a minimalist. Minimalism aside, you’re going to save time by not waiting for your bag at the carousel at the end, and you’re going to save money by not paying to check your bag (it’s your carry-on).
The whole point of minimalism is only including in your life that which has value & true meaning – which, can include wants, as I’m not suggesting minimalism only includes needs. Sacrilege!
Rule two: equipment, clothing, and accessories combined (minus the sneakers), this is all going to fit into one large freezer style Ziplock bag. If I can do it, you can do it 🙂
LET’S CHECK & COVER OUR CORE BASES
Sneakers that are easily bendable/flexible. Purpose: so they don’t take up a lot of room in your carry-on. You could also wear your sneakers during transport, depending on the outfit you decide to travel in. My choice sneaker to travel with is Nike Free Fly Knit (I ran my first half marathon in these bad boys!). Packing tip with sneakers: shove your socks & underwear inside them to help max out every square inch of your packing space.
HOT TIP: Nike’s fiscal year end is in April, and during this time they clear out all old styles & colors. If you can hunt down the style you want in your size and you don’t care about the color, you can score a wicked deal. I got my Fly Knit’s for $59 CAD including tax from the Nike store in West Van.
Clothing (warm weather climate packing):
- Use your one piece bathing suit or your bikini top as your workout top
- You’ll bring the most compact shorts you own
- If you’re bringing a t-shirt to toss on overtop of your bikini top, make it ultra lightweight, thin material, bonus points for nano silver technology/sweat-wicking + choosing a material with UV protection. These items do exist & protection from the sun is key.
- Ball cap (trust me on this one). It’ll save you the heatstroke & help sop up the sweat!
- You’ll bring two pair of socks
NOTE: ideally you’ll workout in the morning, and should you need to wash any of these items, you will launder them in the bathroom sink (with the shampoo the hotel or your AirBnb provides you with). These items can hang to dry and will be good to go before your next morning’s workout. If using your bathing suit – simply take a dip in the ocean (after rinsing your sweat off, of course)!
Clothing (cold weather climate packing):
- Same drill as warm weather climate packing, just make sure you either wear from the get-go or pack with you a light down jacket that’s ultra compact (if you’re working out outside); something water & wind resistant is your best bet.
- Search to Lululemon, Montcler, MEC, REI, Sportchek and others for these lightweight, fleece-lined, water & wind repellent down jackets.
- My Lulu run jacket is my fave but surprisingly my Montcler looks the best after multiple wears, washes and lifespan (it looks as new as the day I bought it). It was pricier (not by much) but it kicks more ass in terms of dollars per miles in wear. Trial and error, friends (as long as it’s in the budget) 🙂
- Bring leggings or fleece lined pants instead of shorts depending on how “cold” it is wherever you’re going & if you’ll be working out outside or having to commute in the elements. Freezing = you’ll not want to workout = self-defeating = you’re better than that.
- You’ll also bring an ear/head band or mittens. Not both (unless you have the room). We’re being minimalist’s here 😉
The important part: choose the material of your clothing wisely. Thin clothing not only packs more efficiently (takes up less space), but it dries the quickest should you have to wash any of your clothes. Make sure the material “feels good” (is comfy), so as not to bring uncomfortable workout clothes (though that might meet packing purpose requirements).
SO IMPORTANT: you don’t want to sabotage your workout by not feeling comfortable in your workout gear. Matching is not important here, comfort is!
- You’ll bring your earbuds as a no-brainer whilst travelling to either listen to a movies, podcast, or audio book while on the plane. These earbuds can double their use while you’re working out if music, a podcast, or an audiobook motivates you.
- You’ll use your smart phone to deliver whatever you’re listening to while you crush your workout; you’re not bringing an iPod (it’s an extra and you all ready have something with you that can do it’s job for it).
- Bring the Garmin (or whatever workout watch or gadget you fancy/own), because you’re not going minimalist over night (or at least I’m not, anyway)! You still want to stay on point while away and track your progress. We’re minimalist, but we’re still high performers who operate in a healthy, personal-best type of landscape 😉
How to enhance the workout without taking up too much space in the suit case (if you’re going away for a longer period of time, and could use the extra push):
- Skipping rope/jump rope
- Resistance band (there are tons of different resistance strengths available)
- In the spirit of minimalism, we’re going to use our bodyweight for exercises, and the great outdoors! Use the water & the beach!
- If you’re super hard core or would rather sacrifice a pair of heels and bring an extra piece of workout gear, gliding discs are killer great in terms of adding a little extra to your core workout. Not necessary, though if you’re in the market and have the space, they’re the only other pack-easy, lightweight, effective items I would suggest.
4. THE WORKOUT ITSELF
- Live stream free workouts from fitness guru’s on YouTube, Beach Body (my fave), or YogaGlo. I’m sure there are others, these are just three that spring to mind and that I’ve used. There are free versions of these, although at some point I imagine you might have to upgrade for a small monthly fee. I think YogaGlo’s is around $10 USD.
- Swim in the ocean or lake & run or walk the sandy beaches! Killer workout right there 🙂
- If you have a pre-paid monthly online membership to something like Tracey Anderson, or the paid version of Beach Body or YogaGlo, you’ll be able to access these workouts from wherever you are (and you’ve all ready paid for them, hence you’re not operating outside the budget).
- Sit ups, crunches, planks, tricep dips, push-ups, squats on the spot – you can do these anywhere.
- Chin-ups, find a playground and use the world as your jungle gym in workout mastery!
- Curl-ups & chest-press with your resistance bands (personal faves)
- Cardio, find some stairs (look for the nearest church) and run these bad boys. Even just walk at a rapid race and search for hills that have a slight (or great) incline.
- If you’re somewhere that has a beach, do your walk or run in the sand.
5. WANT TO HIT UP A CLASS?
- Do research in advance where there are classes and for how much that are near to where you’re staying.
- Grab CLASS PASS, a literal class pass that’s accepted at many larger centres and cities across the globe. Pay for the pass, pick your class, carry on to your next location and there’s no loss incurred. It’s a pay in advance and use as your go situation vs. going to a city, buying a 5-class pass while you’re there for 3 days (and wasting the cost of the other two days because you’re not around to use them).
- If you are in the market to spend or splurge on a class to have fun, socialize and create a healthy experience (which is always a ton of fun), do your research up front on “all the rage” on all things fitness that exist in that city that you don’t have in your own, and invest in the experience of those places. I.e. If you live somewhere that doesn’t have trendy, hardcore spin studios, do your research in advance on what spin places are close to where you’re staying while away from home, and sync up with whatever studio best aligns with your vibe. Once you make the match, purchase a class and see if it was all you thought it was cracked up to be.
On my fitness class bucket list? Barry’s Bootcamp, and I’m always down to check out fun dance classes and ass-kicking pilates classes in new cities – should I be choosing fitness as one of my indulgences/luxuries while away. Spin is always on the list work-out wise, though not necessarily while travelling. I live in a city chalk FULL of killer spin places, my all time/long time fave being Method Cycling (locations in West Van & Kits).
I get it. You just rocked the whole workout in true minimalist traveller fashion and you need to get that protein into yah’ within ideally 15 minutes post workout. If we could just travel with all of our goods, wouldn’t it be grand? Well – you’re a minimalist at home now, so your supplement cupboard isn’t brimming right now, anyway.
Tip one: critically evaluate what you can actually live without. You can generally get enough protein from breakfast vs. needing to pack protein, but . . . to each their own, I get it. First, source places that can do the trick post workout protein-wise well-enough while you’re away. There’s a juice or an acai bowl place? The hotel can whip up a hardboiled egg like no one’s business, I bet. If there’s a grocery store nearby, grab nuts, canned tuna, and hemp harts (high in protein). These things can double as snacks while travelling too (okay, well not necessarily the tuna 😉
If bringing protein powder with you – sure, those pre-packed travel packets are great (but they cost more than just portioning out whatever it is yourself). Time & money obviously weigh each other out here in different capacities for every individual. What I do, I’ll scoop out as many portions of protein as I need, and double zip lock bag the protein (plus the scoop). Freezer bags are my #1 packing bestie on so many levels (helps keep things organized, safe and clean).
7. THINGS YOU’RE NOT GOING TO PACK
- Unless you’re a hard core yogi, you’re not bringing your yoga mat.
- Spin shoes. If you spin, use the shoes they have wherever you’re going (suck it up).
- Bulky sweatshirts. Unless you live in one and can’t do without it, you’re not going to pack it. It takes up too much space and it’s not efficient enough to protect you from wind or water, so – no bueno in terms of packing & minimalism around fitness, sistah! You’d end up buying something water/wind protective, and that wouldn’t monetarily be very minimalist of you (since you all ready have one of those items at home) 😉
- Leave the bulk of your supplements & vitamins at home, or have them drop-shipped (instead of taking them in your carry-on, the only bag you’ll be travelling with) 😉
8. OTHER NOTES
- Stretch with the resistance band
- If you absolutely must, bring a tennis or gold ball to work out any knots in your back, feet, etc.
- Mediate! Free, can be done anywhere, and – if you need a hand, dial in to Headspace.
The less you bring the better off you are in the world of minimalism, and the more strategic you pack and plan in advance, the less likely you’ll spend money because you forgot something, or spend out of convenience or emotion. All the things I’ve suggested you not pack, plus more? At various points I’ve travelled with all and these ones I’ve noted, turned out to either be more of a hassle then they were worth, or I didn’t use them. Again, sacred yoga mat, if you’re that person, I 1000% honor you, I just haven’t been able to travel with on efficiently and use it with heart. I’ve borrowed friends’ or rented a mat and think I’ve had some good karma exchange and rub off 😉
Wishing you a world of travel, saved dollaz’ and love! Let me know what some of your minimalism tips and tricks are around fitness and travel, I would love to hear.
BIG LOVE, FINANCE + FLOW,