Tracy is a Program Coordinator at the MA Department of Public Health
With summer now upon us, many of us have plans to go on a family trip – whether it’s close by or far away. The word ‘vacation’ may have you already questioning whether you can keep up your healthy habits– will I be able to eat well? When will I be able to be active? But don’t panic – it may be easier than you think to keep your healthy routine while away from home.
Use vacation as an opportunity to make exercise a family experience. Get your children excited about the many fun activities they can do – just because its fun, doesn’t mean it shouldn’t count towards being active! Doing things together may make being active feel like less of a chore and more of something you look forward to. Children enjoy taking part in activities they see their parents doing.
Go for a walk with your family and explore the new area you are visiting. Visit a local park and kick a ball around. Swimming is a great activity and will also help you beat the summer heat! Rent bikes and ride around the area as a family. Biking allows you see so much while getting in a fun workout. Just remember to wear your sun block, hats, and helmets!
Have time to work out on your own? Hit the sidewalks and go for a nice walk! Many gyms will allow you to purchase a week pass for a small fee so you can keep up your workouts while away from home. If you’re staying in a hotel, find out if they have an on-site workout room. Bring some workout videos with you to fit in some “you” time after the kids go to sleep or first thing in the morning to get your day started.
Continue this family time when you return home. You may find this time together is a wonderful way to catch up on what is going on in each other’s lives. Vacations can be about even more than spending some quality time together – it can improve your family’s health at the same time!