On the go for business or vacation and don’t want to fall behind on your fitness routine? Get a great workout regardless of your gym setting with three simple steps and improve your travel workouts immediately, giving you more time for work or play.

Before we dive in, a quick note on equipment: understanding your equipment options is vital to managing your travel workouts. Hotel gyms offer a plethora of machine based equipment, BUT most of them are worth skipping (except the cable pulley stacks). Why?

  1. Machines require less coordination and balance
  2. You sit on your ass enough; there is no need to workout that way
  3. Joint stabilizers are minimally trained

For a more effective workout, follow these three tips:

Travel Tip #1: Stop training small muscles first

If you want big results then train the biggest muscles first: trunk, hips and shoulders. I warm up with standing ab exercises on the cable machine, or I often bring bands with me that I can loop onto something.

Travel Tip #2: If you’re not breaking a sweat, you’re not training

Burning calories releases heat, so if you’re not sweating then you’re not burning fat. I keep my rest periods as short as possible for two reasons:

  1. Keeping rest periods short will improve your time to recover and raise your conditioning level.
  2. I don’t want to waste time; the more I can do in one hour, the stronger I become.

Travel Tip #3: Be creative

Like I said before, every gym is different and if you look at what you can’t do then you’re focusing on the negative, which will make for a bad workout. Embrace the challenge, and say, “How can I train legs today with no barbell?” The answer is simple- I will goblet squat to a low bench or box and rep out 60 second per set. Rest and repeat for a few sets. So be creative and think outside the box!

Bonus Video: Learn the Goblet Squat