You have a long commute to work five days a week and want to spend what’s little left of your weekends and evenings with your family.
Maintaining an active lifestyle is a balancing act, and if you’re a busy professional who travels a lot it becomes even harder to get into a routine.
But there are ways to get in quick workouts, even within the confines of a small hotel room. Is it optimal? No. But it’s far superior to sitting in bed with your morning donut and coffee. The common feature among short workouts is a cranked-up intensity that allows you to burn more calories and exhaust your muscles faster than a traditional workout.
Here are 7 intense hotel workouts you can use to get your metabolism firing and maintain strength while away from home.
Hotel rooms aren’t just reserved for quick fat loss circuits. Even the simplest hotel-room accessories can be used to add resistance.
Start with step-ups onto the bed or couch to warm up, and then advance to “bed jumps” – essentially a box jump but the bed acts to cushion your joints from impact, making it a better alternative to conventional box jumps or jump squats where you’re landing on a hard surface with no give. The instability of the bed adds another challenge, but work up to this movement if you’re new to exercise.
You can then finish your leg workout with lunges (keep one foot elevated on a chair or couch behind you) and rep out 15 per leg, rinse and repeat for four sets, followed immediately by wall sits, where you crouch in a seated position with your back flat against a wall and your legs parallel to the floor. Try to hold for 60 seconds and feel the burn.
Here’s how the lower body workout breaks down:
1. Step Ups – 4 sets of 15 reps per leg
2. Bed Jumps – 4 sets of 8-10
3. Lunges – 4 sets of 15 per leg
4. Wall Sits – 1 set of 60 seconds
Here’s one for upper body:
1. Decline Push Ups – 4 sets of 15 with your feet elevated on the bed or couch (if you have a travel buddy, they can put a suitcase on your back for added resistance!)
2. Close-grip Push Ups – 4 sets of 15
3. Handstand Push Ups – 4 sets of 8-10 (Advanced – watch tutorial here)
4. Pull Ups – 4 sets of 8-10 (using a door frame – assess the strength of the door frame first!)
5. Torso slides – 4 sets of 8-10 (see example here from Mashable or below)
This one comes courtesy litealloy.com
As many rounds as you can in 3 minutes:
1. 3 knee tuck jumps
2. 3 dive bomber push-ups
As many rounds as you can in 2 minutes:
1. 3 jump lunges
2. 3 1-leg dive bomber
3. 3 jump lunges
4. 3 1-leg dive bomber (other leg)
Choice Hotels recently polled 8 fitness pros and got their personal favourite on-the-road workouts. One popular choice is tabata, a scientifically proven workout protocol lasting just 4 minutes. It consists of 20 seconds of pushing yourself to the max, followed by a 10 second rest, repeated 8 times.
For the Tabata, pick high intensity, explosive movements such as squat jumps and mountain climbers, or burpees and jumping lunges, and apply them as outlined below. Here’s one example from their blog:
If you’re in a nice climate and have some time in the morning before work, find a hill nearby! As Jason Ferruggia recommends, find a steep grass hill that’s at least 30 yards long. Warm up thoroughly. Sprint up it. Walk back down. Catch your breath and repeat. Do this for 15-20 minutes.
If there’s three feet of snow outside or it’s raining, you could also find the nearest stairwell, spring up a few flights, walk back down, rinse and repeat for 15 minutes. There’s more impact on your joints here, but warm up thoroughly first. Here’s one stretch that gets you ready
Utilize the TRX
TRX suspension kits can be purchased and easily fit in your luggage. They open up a wide gamut of exercises.
Here’s a circuit done continuously for 15 minutes.
1. Overhead Squat
2. Back Rows
3. Glute Bridge
4. Atomic Push Up