By Donna Masing, Founder of Global Performance Therapy at Surfing Australia.
Being the Sports Therapist for several high profile surfers means that I travel a lot, and while the life of a professional passport stamp collector sounds fun – it can often take its’ toll on your body. Here are my top 5 travel fitness tips so you can stay fresh on the road –
1. Find A Way To Move Every Day
No matter what activity you like to do, ensure that you do it every single day. If you’re stuck for time, try and work it into your other commitments – when working on the Hurley Pro in California, stop eight on the Surfing World Tour, I like to walk the 2 km road through the national park to the beach, rather than take a lift.
If there are laydays (no surfing days), I’ll go hire a stand up paddle board and explore the creeks.
If going solo isn’t your thing, search Facebook for running or swimming clubs in the area you’ve traveled to, Mazarine Aqua have an awesome group that meet regularly to swim, sup and surf together… Most will have weekly meet ups and it’s a great way to get to know the local people!
2. Learn a simple mobility routine
To maintain your travel fitness takes about 5 to 10 minutes and can be done anywhere there’s a bit of flat ground. Anyone can do these exercises because they are low impact and it’s up to the individual to stop at their own end range.
Set out a space of 15 to 20 meters.
Start by drawing your knee to your chest while standing tall and then lunge forward. Put your feet together and repeat on the other side. Go back to the start line the same way, but this time introduce a thoracic twist towards the bent knee.
Now stand sideways in a deep squat, keeping your back straight. Shift all your weight onto the leading side and pull in the other leg to meet in the middle. Stretch out the leading leg, coming into a squat again. As you’re stretching out the leading leg, you’ll find all your weight is now on the back leg, so transfer your weight across to the leading leg again as you maneuver into the wide squat position. The lower you can go, the better the glute burn!
3. Try something new
What a great way to immerse yourself into the culture of the Country you’re visiting for our 3rd travel fitness tip. Find a samba class (Oi Rio Pro), try Parkour (Quiksilver Pro France) or shake your hips at hula (Billabong Pipe Masters).
4. Catch enough Zz’s
More and more research is coming out about how vital sleep is to our general health and wellbeing. Jet lag can be a total joy kill, so try these simple rules to avoid the dreaded 3am wake up.
- Get in the sun! Being in a different time zone means that you need to reset your internal clock, and sunlight does just that.
- Avoid caffeinated drinks on the plane and limit alcohol. I know it’s tricky when that drinks cart comes around, but sipping on water is way better for you than stimulants (coffee, sugar) and depressants (alcohol).
- Flying East makes jet lag much worse, because you’re going directly against your body clock. If you can, try and get to bed a little earlier in the days leading up to your flight. If you’re traveling West, do the opposite and try to stay awake until 1 or 2 am.
5. Eat Well
There’s nothing better than pizza from Italy or burgers from the USA, but don’t over indulge. Google local farmers markets and take some fresh produce home to cook your own meals. Find your happy balance between eating street food and home cooking to avoid tummy upsets. If you’re feeling more experimental, have a traditional cook up using local, ingredients only.
Finally, the best advice for our travel fitness is always to have fun! Being healthy is about paying attention to your body, mind and spirit!
Having recently relocated from Dubai to Casuarina on the NSW north coast, Donna is now working at the Surfing Australia Hurley High Performance Centre.
As Dubai’s premier Soft Tissue Therapist, Donna has worked with the ASP World Championship Tour for surfing, Proteas South African Cricket Team, members of the Springbok and Samoan Rugby Teams, Swiss Motorsport as well as for high profile events such as the ATP Men’s tennis championships and Waterman League SUP championships.
Follow me on Instagram #ForEveryAthlete