How can you maintain your cardio fitness during the holidays?
It’s not easy to keep up a fitness routine when you’re not at home and/or you can’t get to a Curves club… Fortunately, there are ways you can avoid putting your training on hold for weeks at a time! Curves has advice to share so you can continue your CV exercises even when you’re on holiday.
The benefits of CV training for the body
Cardiovascular (CV) training has great health benefits and affects the body in different ways:
It contributes to weight loss by burning fat and calories
It strengthens the heart
It improves lung capacity
It reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease
It improves circulation
It reduces stress
It improves sleep quality
You get a definite feel-good buzz afterwards
Regular CV workouts speed up the metabolism and therefore burn more calories. Hence the importance of regular, dedicated training to take advantage of all these benefits.
But how can you keep up a CV regime when you’re on holiday?
Ask for a Curves Travel Pass!
With a bit of luck, there’ll be one or more Curves fitness clubs near your resort. And as a member, you can go in and train as often as you wish,
provided you have a Curves Travel Pass that’ll get you entry to any Curves club. Just apply at your usual club.
And if you’re a long way away with no chance of getting to a Curves club? Here’s some advice for easy and natural exercises you can do on holiday:
Walk whenever possible
If time and distance allow, walk instead of driving or taking public transport. Walking is an excellent cardio workout. It’s the most basic and natural exercise there is.
And the advantage of walking is that it doesn’t require any particular equipment or specific fitness level. You can walk whatever your age or physical condition. What’s more, it’s very low impact and particularly recommended for anyone trying to lose weight.
If you’re off on a trip for example, explore the town on foot… not only will you see it all from a different and better angle, you’ll also be doing yourself some good. It won’t feel like an effort as you’ll be busy discovering new places and other exciting things on your trip.
If you’re a nature lover, why not organise a hike? Again, this is a practical option that can be relatively gentle and accessible, provided you go at your own pace. The advantage of hiking is that you can do it in a group, with family or friends. It’s a great combination of exercising and socialising!
As well as walking proper, there are simple things you can do like taking the stairs rather than the lift. A small gesture that’s better for both your health and the environment as you’re helping to reduce energy consumption too.
Simple exercises with no equipment required
If you’re away from home with no Curves club nearby, here are some CV exercises you can easily do without the need for any equipment:
Skipping: this is considered the best exercise you can do to improve your cardio fitness and tone up at the same time. It strengthens the heart, the arms and the glutes (your backside!)… In short, it’s a complete exercise in itself with a variety of combinations you can do! You can go at your own pace and gradually increase the length and intensity of your session. Given that 15 minutes of skipping is equivalent to 30 minutes’ jogging, it makes sense to give it a go!
Going up and down stairs: so simple to do, this exercise gets your heart pumping and at the same time tones your legs, glutes and calves. A quick way to expend energy, whenever you want and wherever you are. All you need is… stairs! You can vary this exercise in terms of intensity and the way you go up and down… for example, on your tiptoes, walking, running, taking 2 steps at a time, and so on. You can burn up to 500 calories in an hour! And to make it even more fun, choose your favourite song and sing along as you go. Increase your heart rate and do this exercise for the whole song.
High knees: this is a very effective cardio exercise that simply involves running on the spot, taking your knees up high. Stand tall, suck in your core and get those legs going as fast as you can.
The plank: a strengthening exercise that works the abdominals, a muscle group that plays a crucial role in endurance. The plank involves contracting your core muscles whilst maintaining the same position. To start, lie on the floor then come up onto your forearms, keeping your legs and back in a straight line; then hold this position for several seconds (ideally between 30 seconds and 1 minute). You could start off with a series of 5 repetitions with 30 seconds recovery in between each.
Wall squat: sit back against a wall as though you’re sitting in a chair and the wall is the chair back. Hold this position for around 30 seconds, taking the weight in your heels and breathing deeply. This is another exercise that helps to strengthen the quads, the muscles at the front of your thighs. The stronger your muscles, the greater your endurance and the easier it becomes to perform purely cardio exercises. You can, for example, do this exercise while watching your favourite TV programme instead of sitting on the sofa.
All these exercises are a great alternative if you can’t get to a Curves gym. What do they have in common? Everyone can do them whatever their age or fitness level. They don’t require any equipment and you can do them anytime, anywhere.
Don’t forget to stretch
Whatever cardio exercises you do, it’s important to stretch out afterwards. This helps to prevent muscle aches which can occur after intense effort.
Remember to breathe when you’re stretching out and avoid putting any strain on your joints. Ten minutes is enough for a post-workout stretch to avoid the risk of injury. Stretching shouldn’t be painful. If it is, this means you’ve stretched your muscle as far as it will go and you need to ease back.
Stretching has numerous health benefits including preventing muscle imbalance and relieving the joints.
This is why the Curves’ 30-minute workout always includes a stretch out.
Stretching is also recommended as soon as you wake up, to get rid of tension and toxins that have built up in the body overnight. This will make your cardio training even more effective!
So now you’re back from your holidays and looking for a comprehensive workout programme with Strength Training, cardio activity and stretching…with the Curves circuit, you work all your muscle groups and improve your cardio fitness in only 30 minutes! If you like the idea, contact your nearest club to book a free consultation today!