For many of us, the holidays mean some kind of travel. Being away from home and our typical routines can make it all too easy to find excuses for avoiding our training and eating junk that doesn’t help us toward our goals. It isn’t easy to put yourself first when an aunt shows up with her famous mostly-marshmallow sweet potato casserole or you’re sharing a bedroom with family members.
If you’re going to find yourself in a place where you won’t have a workout buddy, such as a family member who works out and already has training space in their house, here are some ideas for highly transportable equipment that won’t weigh down your luggage in the airport and won’t require much space to use.
If you’re not following me on Instagram yet, get over there! (Search @exclusivelykell) I use these guys all the time. They weigh about as much as a few paper plates and take up as much space. They provide a great cardio/strength combo workout, and for bonus points, they’re easy to use barefoot so you won’t need to pack your gym shoes unless you have another reason to bring them.
You can get them on Amazon, check your local Target, or I’ve even seen other online trainers use sliders from the hardware store that are designed for furniture.
- Curtsy lunges, lunging back on slider, 10 R/L
- Hand Slide-outs, 6 R/L (Get into a push-up position either on your toes or knees. Slowly lower yourself down, keeping one hand stabilized and in place and sliding the other as far out in front of you as you can. Push back up using the stable hand until you return to the starting position. Repeat on the other side.)
- Side lunges, sliding out on slider, 10 R/L
- Wide-leg mountain climbers, feet on sliders, 20 alternating sides
Go for 3 rounds
Bands come in lots of forms. They come with and without handles, they come in closed loops, long or short, heavy or light. I find the most versatile ones are like these, where you can tie them into a loop if needed or leave them open-ended and just wrap them around your fists if you need “handles”. You’ll get less of a cardio element with these, but for some on-the-go strength moves to push all that turkey and stuffing right into your muscles, they’re great. And they’ll fit inside your toiletry case. Note that you’ll probably want gym shoes for these, as they stay in place around the bottom of your feet much more comfortably.
- Seated rows, 20
- Hamstring curls, 15 R/L (Perform these on all fours. Loop the band around your right ankle and the bottom of your left foot. Leaving the right knee on the ground, extend the left foot out behind you at hip height. Bend the left knee to perform the hamstring curl, making sure to hold the knee at the same height. Extend to starting position. Perform 15, then switch sides. It’s okay if the band slides around your right ankle a little bit. High socks will help hold it in place!)
- Knee extensions, 15 R/L (Stand up and secure the band under one foot, and wrap it around the opposite ankle. Using a wall or back of a chair for balance, lift the foot with the band wrapped around the ankle until your knee is at hip height, or as close to hip height as is comfortable. Extend from the knee. Bend the knee to return to the starting position. Perform 15, then switch sides)
- Bicep curls, 15 (Stand on the band and grip the ends in your hands. Curl upward.)
- Tricep kickbacks, 15 (Stand on the band and grip the ends in your hands. Hinge forward at the hip as if performing a row. Raise elbows to your ribs, and kick hands backward.)
Go for 3 rounds