If you’re anything like me and trying to be healthiest version of you, then it might be a good idea to think about ways to stay fit on a road trip! In my post about staying healthy on a road trip. I talked about how I prepared for my trip from Cincinnati, Ohio to Pella, Iowa and what I ate on the drive to give my body the nutrients it needed. In this post, you’ll see recommendations for how to stay fit on a road trip!
The most important fitness tip I can give on a road trip is to take advantage of the break times you have at gas stations! I made sure to stretch each part of my body with standing stretches before we hit the road again.
You might feel a little weird stretching it out in front of total strangers, but my philosophy is you are doing what your body NEEDS. Also, you’ll be in middle of nowhere, so it’s not like you’ll even see those same people again, right?
I would recommend doing these series of targeted body stretches for about 15 seconds:
1. Full Body
- First, start with a full body stretch. Stand with your feet hip-with distance apart and bring your arms above your head parallel to each other.
- With control, bring your hands back behind you with a slight back bend. Only enough to get a good stretch in your abs.
- Next, straighten yourself back to standing and stretch out your neck! Gently roll your neck clockwise a few rotations and switch to the other direction.
- Then lean your head to the left and bring your left hand to your head and GENTLY pull down so you feel a good stretch in your neck. Repeat on right side.
- After that, stretch your shoulders and upper arms with a cross body stretch. Swing your left arm over to the right side and place your left arm in the crook of your right arm.
- Use your right arm to GENTLY pull your left arm away from your body. Repeat on right side.
- Don’t forget about your triceps! Bring your left arm up and drop your hand behind your shoulder, then place your right hand on your left elbow and GENTLY use your right hand to pull your left elbow straight behind you.
- Now, take your hands behind your body with your fingers interlaced and try to pull you hands away your body.
- You should feel this in the front of your shoulders through your sternum (the bone in the center of your chest).
- Don’t forget about your sides (obliques)! Bring your hands together and with straight arms above your head. Imagining you are pointing your fingers over to the left side, feeling a deep stretch in your right side body. After 15 seconds repeat on the opposite side.
- Now move down to your hips with a figure four stretch. Standing on your right leg, bring your left foot over your right knee with your standing knee slightly bent.
- If you feel stiff and already feel a deep stretch, then stay there. If you are needing a deeper stretch bend your standing knee a little more. Repeat on opposite side.
8. Quadriceps (Legs)
- Putting your weight on your right leg again, get a stretch in your Quadriceps by grabbing your left ankle with your left hand.
- This may be a deep enough stretch for you, if so, stay in this stretch! If you need a deeper stretch pull your ankle closer to your body OR start to kick the weight of your leg into your hand while leaning against a wall (or the gas pump!). Repeat on right side.
9. Thighs (Legs)
- Continuing with your legs find the closest wheel stop (the concrete thing at the front of the parking spot) and stretch the back of your thighs out.
- Lift your toes and the balls of your left foot on the wheel stop and with a straight leg hinge forward at the hips until you feel the desired amount of stretch. Repeat on the opposite side.
10. Calves (Legs)
- Last but not least, your calves! This will stretch the backs of your lower legs out.
- Bring your left leg forward on the ground with a bend. Keep your right leg straight with all of your right foot firmly planted behind you. Stand facing a wall (or gas pump) and pretend to push the wall away from you. Repeat on opposite side.
Now that you’ve got a good stretch, I would recommend doing a small cardio burst to kickstart your metabolism! When you eat your protein filled snacks you packed, you’ll be a lean, mean digesting machine!
Here’s a few different standing cardio bursts you can do anywhere before you start driving again:
- 10 jumping jacks
- 10 high knees
- 10 knee drives on each side (quickly drive your kneecap up in between your bent arms. And BONUS you’ll feel the burn in your hips, too)
Where is your next trip planned? How do you stay fit on a road trip; Do you have any routines you like to do on a drive? Let me know in the comments!