How to Stay Fit on Your Vacation

Today’s post is a guest post by Kardena Pauza, an adventurous traveler and personal trainer

Getting in some push ups on a vacation to Thailand and Vietnam

Have you gone on vacation only to come back feeling more flabby and out of shape than when you left? It’s a disappointing feeling and a frustration because now you have taken two steps back and have to work hard to get back to your physically strong self again and maybe drop those couple lbs. you gained during your vacation.

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Fitness Tips on the Go!

Guest blog post by Kardena Pauza, personal trainer

Whether you’re traveling across the country or traveling across the world, staying healthy & energized is key to enjoying your vacation. If you are soaring thousands of miles to explore, let’s make the most of it! Here are some tips to keep you healthy, energized, and fit while traveling.

HydrationWater Bottle

Staying hydrated is really important since our entire bodies processes rely on water to function properly. Everything from energy, brain function and increasing the metabolism to boosting the immune system! Before boarding, buy the largest bottle of water you can find. If you are in the airport, remember you can’t bring it from outside the airport, you must go through security then buy it before boarding. Shoot for drinking a minimum of 64 oz. a day so determine how much you need to drink while traveling and keep drinking. Ask the flight attendants for a refill when you need it. If I relied on the rations of water the flight attendants gave me, I’d feel like I was dehydrated in the Sahara!

Once you reach your destination, carry a bottle of water with you. Again, get a nice large bottle and put it in your backpack for easy traveling. In some areas near the equator, fresh squeezed juice is readily available! This would be a bonus for staying hydrated, fruits like watermelon, mango, orange, lime, and fresh coconut water are full of electrolytes, vital minerals and antioxidants.

Avoid the Excesses

Avoid consuming excess soda, alcohol & caffeine. I’m not trying to take the fun out of traveling, believe me! What you can do is not go over board and be laid out, hung over and missing out on crucial exploring time!

Make a rule for yourself to only drink 1 or 2 specialty drinks during the day and keep your alcohol drinking to a minimum in the evening. That means only drinking a couple drinks in the evening. And be sure to drink several big glasses of water before heading to bed to stave off a hang over & tiredness the next day.

Keep Moving:

If you are on a long flight, it’s a good idea to get up and stretch to get your circulation going & stretch your upper body while in your seat. Try and do this every hour. Once you get to your destination, it’s on. Exercising while you’re on vacation can be a ton of fun, and keep you healthy & energized! Exercise is an excellent way to detoxify, clear your mind, get your blood really pumping for the day, & boost your immune system.

Bike in Austria

Bike through the gorgeous Austrian Tyrol region on the European Horizon tour.

One way to do this is to take 20-45 minutes first thing in the morning, breath the morning fresh air and do a cardio activity like jogging on the beach, biking the mountain side or through the city or running the stairs in front of an ancient temple. What a great way to see the local sights and immerse yourself in the intricacies of the area you are visiting. Or schedule a guided active tour that day like a biking tour of the city or a kayak trip through ocean caves. What a life!

Have Healthy Snacks

Snacking through out the day will keep your body fully energized, keep your metabolism up, and is a great way to guarantee that you will be eating healthy. The last thing you want to happen is to be starving & grumpy and be forced to eat whatever is around you at the time.

Ideas: Bring snacks on the plane with you. Yes, you are allowed to bring food through security as long as it’s not in liquid form like yogurt, salad dressing, or soup. So pack a healthy care package for yourself like fruit, veggies, nuts, salad, protein bars, and lean protein.

Once you get to your destination, make a quick stop at the local grocery mart and stock up on quick bites to take with you on your excursions – check out the fun local foods that you probably can’t find at home!  You’ll have balanced energy throughout the day with less stress. BTW- by carrying your own food, you’ll be saving money that you can spend on more important traveling souvenirs and memories!

Find Ways to Rest and Relax

Budapest Thermal Bath

On the Eastern Road Contiki you can stop in Budapest and check out some beautiful thermal baths, many of which are hundreds of years old!

Find ways to relax and unwind. Our daily lives can be stressful and so can traveling. Visiting exotic places in the world can sometimes come with ancient relaxation & healing traditions that you can experience. Some places have natural hot springs, pocket book friendly massage therapy, meditation classes or acupuncture. This is a great way to relax, unwind, and experience the benefits of their distinct culture while nourishing your body.


Kardena Pauza is a spunky travel and fitness loving Orange County, CA personal trainer, nutrition specialist, and author of Easy Veggie Meal Plans.




Vagabonding Gear 101

We’d like to welcome a new guest blogger to Contiki’s blog!  Justin Troupe will be going on the 48-day Ultimate European Contiki and he’s going to keep a travelogue of his adventures on his blog – along with tips and advice such as this post – as he makes his way through Europe.  Check out his post, as he prepares for his Contiki adventure, complete with video reviews of some items that he plans to use.


A Wish List for Long Term Travelers

My name is Justin, I am a writer and photographer who is taking a Contiki trip starting on July 3rd for 47 days. I will be taking HDR photos and HD video and sharing them on the Contiki blog as well as my website The Endless Weekend.

After spending 4 months of research, I put together 10 of the neatest things I discovered for long term travel. If you want to save yourself a ton of research and money check out these companies first. If you find something better, please let me know in the comments.

This year, I am beginning my goal of photographing every country in the world. To get things started my wife and I will be visiting 30 countries this year. The first 6 weeks we are traveling with Contiki, the rest of the trip we are going solo. I did my first Contiki tour many years ago and have wanted to go on another one ever since.  Contiki tours are fast-paced; however I had a blast and think they are an insane value.

Contiki was started in 1961 by a guy from New Zealand who bought a bus and toured Europe for a summer with several random people he had just met. Fifty years later, they offer worldwide guided tours for 18 to 35 year olds. They not only provide transportation between countries but also accommodations and most of your food. We will be traveling with a group of around 25 people to over 17 countries on  The Ultimate European tour. The total price for 48 days of travel is about $6,000 per person. I know that traveling with a group is different from going solo, but if you like variety it doesn’t get any better than Contiki. The shorter tours start at about $1,000 for 2 weeks. They offer payment plans and will even let you book a tour on layaway with $200 and make payments. This company completely removes the excuse that travel is just too expensive. The accommodations are basic, but they are clean and comfortable. You also spend very little time in your room on one of these tours.

Ok so here we go:

1)   Eagle Creek suitcase: They come in many different sizes, but I decided on the  Tarmac 25 inch. These things are indestructible, lightweight and have highly reinforced corners. The wheels are huge, indestructible and will roll over anything from dirt to cobblestone. You can watch a video review (below) or by clicking here.

2) Pack it: They also have a unique packing system called PACK IT that keeps your stuff organized. It allows you to keep your clean and dirty cloths separated and fit a lot more in the same amount of space.You can watch the video (below) or by clicking here.

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5 Fresh Items For Summer Vacation Packing

Tired of your suitcase or backpack always looking like a hot mess?  We’ve given you the lowdown on whether you should bring a suitcase vs. backpack, and you’ve already checked out the Europe summer packing list, so now you’ve got to figure out how to bring all that stuff… and keep it looking good through your trip.  Packing is like a game of Tetris – how can you maximize all that space in your suitcase, and still leave room for souvenirs and other goodies?  Here are 5 items to consider when you’re packing (and later repacking!) your bags for your summer vacation.

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