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For many, holidays are synonymous with indulgence and relaxation. While relaxing and unwinding on holiday is a must, there are some steps that can be taken to give health and fitness attention while enjoying the sun and sand.

Fitness and travel fan Richard Mallett firmly believes that it is possible to maintain a fitness regime while also enjoying travelling the world.


Cardio often falls to the wayside when on holiday. However, that doesn’t need to be the case. If a particular holiday is near the sea or a pool, taking advantage of this by swimming, diving, or snorkelling can help to keep up with cardiovascular workouts. Swimming lengths of a pool early in the morning can give the body a welcome boost, or alternatively swimming against the waves can combine cardio with resistance training for an effective holiday workout.


Many people find that they naturally walk more while on holiday. It is easily possible to walk 20,000 or even 30,000 steps each day. Walking instead of taking public transport has benefits for fitness, while giving travellers more of a chance to fully explore their holiday location.

Bodyweight Exercises

Keeping fit on holiday does not have to involve the use of a gym. Instead, try bodyweight exercises in your hotel room. Bodyweight exercises can provide great results without the need for weights or equipment.

Push ups are an ideal bodyweight exercise that can be utilised while on holiday. This movement works the muscles in the arms, chest, shoulders, and core. Tricep dips are another easy holiday exercise as they can be completed using just a chair for support.

If the location or hotel allows for it, pull ups are an incredible bodyweight exercise that works the back, arms, and chest. Finding a safe spot isn’t always easy; however, door frames, doors and even sturdy tree branches can be suitable.

Squats are another bodyweight exercise that can be completed just about anywhere. Squats help to build muscles in the legs, back and glutes and can be completed on their own, or with a jump (plyo squats). If additional weight is desired while completing squats, holding a suitcase above the head can fulfil this requirement.

Limit Carbohydrates

When on holiday, most people are unlikely to work out as much as they usually would. This means that the body does not need as many carbohydrates; limiting their intake until the evening will ensure that only around 100 to 200 grams of carbohydrates will be consumed.

Limiting intake of carbohydrates also keeps the body in ketosis during the day. This means the body runs off fat (from food or fat stored in the body) rather than carbohydrates. Taking advantage of ketosis while on holiday means that it is possible to go hours between meals, and it avoids the energy peaks and troughs that come from the high carbohydrate diet most athletes follow.

For more information about consuming enough fat to maintain ketosis, please see the embedded PDF.

Many people will naturally drink more when on holiday. By making considered choices regarding alcohol, it is possible to avoid the empty carbohydrates that can hide in cocktails and wines. Where possible, opt for low calorie spirits, dry wines and wheat beer. In terms of spirits, tequila, vodka, and whiskey are low-calorie options.