Monthly Archives: February 2013

How to stay in Shape while Travelling

For starters…avoid injuries. Splitting my knee open was the beginning of a bad 2 month spell for me. Prior to that I had been running daily in Australia. I must say, it’s not ideal to run daily when staying in hostels for a few reasons…your stuff stinks, and you need to air it out but you share a room with 7 strangers, you’re the only one going…coming back after 1km still seems like an accomplishment, you are going to have to do laundry more often…which in AUS/NZ is an 8 dollar setback each time. BUT I will say, that I have had the most fun, taken the most photos, and been most keen to try new things when I’ve been fit and feeling good about myself.

I’ve been doing pretty well for the last few weeks in New Zealand, but only running a couple times a week…here are a few tips on getting active (For cheap) regularly while living a nomadic lifestyle…or just going to Mexico.

1. WALK. Seriously…I walked 23km yesterday. I saw more of Auckland than on the $40 grey haired bus, got to stop when and where I wanted. Got to window shop 10s of sweet cafes for lunch and eat it looking over the whole of downtown. All in all I burned around 1200 calories yesterday (Auckland has nasty hills)…and didn’t feel like I was ‘working out’ at all. Free and easy. Check sites like Mapmyrun to see run/walk routes people have already taken…or just ask the info centre where the bus usually goes and follow a route. 20km can take less than 6 hours…it’s actually great time to reflect if you’re travelling alone.

2. lululemon athletica. I am going to free yoga tonight at the Britomart location, and free bootcamp tomorrow at the Ponsonby location AND (for the traveller) they supply mats and/or equipment!! Every non-factory outlet lululemon has free in store classes (or should)…and if they aren’t hosting them they should have passes (free or $5 ish) to other local studios. They should also be able to tell you great runs in the area…be ware of being distracted by 100 pants….it defeats the `cheap workout` purpose…

3. Trial Weeks. Yoga studios (like when I went to Bikram Noosa) will usually have some sort of first week or 3 classes for less than 20 dollars…which is all you ever need when travelling! Also, gyms will usually give you a week for 20 bucks as well…especially if you find ones that are new to the area. I am trying out a gym called lifestyle fitness on a FREE 7day trial in Auckland at the moment!

4. YouTube. 8 minute abs, buns, thighs, arms, back….my heroes thanks to my old roommate Jenny. I’m pretty sure they have all sorts of other exercise programs, but whether you watch and go, or just write down the sequences they are quick [not that embarassing] exercises you can do in your dorm room or at a park close by that dont require weights, and will keep your muscles working without leaving drenched bootcamp style.

5. Take Away containers. Buy one, recycle one…whatever the case, always have one accessible. I find backpacking, it’s excruciating to throw away food…even if it rotting from the inside out. For that reason, before I had my container I was always over eating just out of ‘not wasting food’. Have a container around and spread out small meals…it will make you more comfortable on those nasty bus rides if you don’t eat the whole bag of pasta first anyhow.

6. WATER. Yes, common sense…but it’s free…it keeps you hydrated so you aren’t to tired or lazy to do day long walks or hikes, and it helps you not over-eat. Never mind the fact that you don’t want sun stroke to ruin your limited time in a location.

7. Take the stairs. It may seem minimal…but even if you’re on the 8th floor…if stairs are accessible, take them…if you’re in a shopping centre skip the escalator. I’m not saying run them, or do doubles…you can even walk really slow and pretend to be on the phone if it makes you feel better. Every little bit counts when your travelling. It is extra cardio-and tones those glutes!

8. Long walks on the beach. Walk in the dry sand, get your calves an extra work out. And for the sake of everyone else laying on the beach…DON’T wear your flip flops! On this not of beaches…if you’re near one, go often. My worst month of staying fit was when I was working then partying constantly and didn’t hit the beach for 25 days….day 26-30 was self pity and denial…but having to be in a bikini definitely sparked motivation for me to get it together.

So thanks to the meatheads from Minnesota that I’ve been sharing a room with for the last few days….as they had no interest in hearing about where to travel or what to do…but only how to stay in shape. “You weigh less than 200lbs. hey?” “I’d hope so” “is that lots for a chick? …if I can’t find a gym can I press you?” “no?” “Come on, you’re hot, and I need to stay hot” “was asking if I was 200lbs a pick up line” “yeah…well, and I do need to press something” ……welcome to hostel life.

$500 whoopsies…

So I will say that I definitely am at fault…but I will say that I have a dickhead travel agent I’m not pleased with at the moment either. Basically her email to me said “Here is the ticket for your flights to Bali on Feb 25″…and my notes from our meeting say Feb 25…So, I booked everything around the 25…So on the 24 I go to double check my flight times…and surprise! Flight was at 6am on Feb 24…

My travel agent from StudentFlights neglected to do anything to help me reschedule my flights…NO student flights locations answered their phones. I went to the Auckland airport (I was flying Auckland to Sydney 10 hour lay over then Syd to Bali) where every flight to Sydney was over 900 dollars…On the phone JetStar said there was nothing they could do…

My AMAZING friends Jen and Marissa were on it from Canada…Marissa does scheduling for work and was able to get in touch with Jetstar and get me a muchh cheaper…but not that cheap…transfer til Saturday…so One more week in Auckland in food and hostels, change fees, and a new flight from auckland to Sydney…

It makes it quite entertaining to me that I have been going out of my way to save 40 cents on yogurt, and one mis-read equals half a grand… Definitely not a mistake I’ll be making again…*Eye roll to self, finger to Student Flights*

I will say on a side not Flight Center has been amazing for trying to help me with my RTW itinerary and were the only ones here trying remotely to help me out even though it wasn’t their error.

Half way to Asia

..is basically what Auckland is… Sushi everywhere, storefronts also in Japanese, the works…The fact that there’s currently a Lantern Festival on doesn’t help the cause. Additionally they’re celebrating the Chinese New Year on the wrong date which is driving me a bit mental…

Anyway, now that I’ve had Jaffa cookies, Scrumpy, Alcoholic Ginger beer, venison, mussels, rosemary mint lamb pies, and copious amounts of coffee and micro brewed cider…I think I’m okay with parting ways with the ‘Canada of the Southern Hemisphere’.

On a side [exciting] note…I got mistaken for being Australian twice and English once last night…my hodgepodge accent lives on! Otherwise the last night in Auckland was pretty sweet… went to heaps of pubs, had a Maori man buy way too many shots then get ragingly angry when I wouldn’t let him cuddle me, swayed to a live cover of Bob marley, Danced shopping cart styles with 40 year olds at some irish pub, found English boys to buy me drinks (the usual), fist pumped pauly-D styles at the 18 year old bar, and had a walk on the wharf with a guy from Ingercarvill (southern most point of south island)…PS I think (as everything else that is forever behind) fist pumping JUSt arrived in Nz…people were a littttttle to jacked up…and my arms are a litttttle too sore today. Ooooh also, we found a great little Mexican place…I think it’s just called Mexican Cafe? in Auckland CBD…west of Queen Street, a few blocks up from the Warf? Anyway, 7 dollar happy hour tacos with rice and salad…WAY better than a take away!

I’ve just booked my flight leaving Bali to Singapore for mid March, so HOPEFULLY I won’t have any troubles getting into the country. Also I got it on Air Asia for 70 dollars including bags/taxes/fees…the travel agent found “a GREAT fare’ for 140. Definitely do your research flying within Asia!

I’m in the process of booking a hotel for the night I arrive, as I get in around 10 pm…then possibly booking (to avoid homelessness) for the Balinese New Year (or something of that nature) on the 10th of March. I might point out that I think I have the best travel itinerary ever…I am chasing both summer and new years celebrations (also in Cambodia for their New Year).

If you have room in your thoughts, think happy NON malaria/denghi getting vibes my way…as much as some good travelleres diarrhea to lose a few lbs could be good, I’d really rather not acquire a relapsing ‘bone jarring flu’.