How To Stay Fit While You Travel

How To Stay Fit While You Travel

Following me on Instagram or Facebook for even just a few days can quickly make you realize I post about working out way too much! I’m a long-time runner and recent CrossFitter, and staying fit is a core part of my identity. When I begin my travels, I’ll be training for the Detroit Marathon (2016), but I wanted to share with you guys some ways that I plan to stay fit on the road. After all, I’m sure I’ll be surrounded by delicious food, and I’ll need a way to make sure my running tights still fit!

Below are some of the ways I plan to maintain my fitness while I’m traveling full-time.

1. Running

This one is a no brainer! Although running can be an expensive sport (headphones, pouches, gels, special clothes, fancy shoes), it doesn’t have to be. All you really need to run is a decent pair of kicks and the open road. It’s a free way to stay fit that also happens to be great for your physical health and mental well-being. Although I will be following a strict training plan over the next few months for my race (Hanson’s Marathon Method is the best there is), I plan to continue running high mileage after that, because it’s what I love and it’s an effective workout. If you aren’t in a place where you can use the great outdoors, most hotels these days have at least a small gym with a treadmill. Going running can be a great way to enjoy a new city, too!

2. Resistance Bands

While the thought of not being able to workout with weights kind of freaks me out, I realized that there is a really good, travel-friendly alternative: resistance bands. There are a lot of really great exercises you can do with resistance bands (bicep curls, chest flies, tricep extensions – to name a few) and the bands are easily transportable from place to place. If you love strength training, consider grabbing a set of resistance bands to travel with.

3. Physical tourist activities

Going traveling doesn’t have to mean eating in expensive hotels and drinking wine all the time. It can mean going swimming in the ocean, getting out to hike, or renting a bike and take a ride. I plan to do as much activity as possible in the places I visit – both to get a true feel for the city and also to keep my heart rate up! It is possible to remain active while traveling – and it’s fun!

4. Meetup groups

In my city, Orlando, I have been part of a great group of women called Central Florida Women Runners. I realized that I didn’t need to skip out on the community that comes with group exercise just because I wasn’t going to have a stable base anymore. I plan to keep the Meetup app on my phone and occasionally drop into running or other workout groups on the road. Meetup is a great resource, not just for working out, but also for meeting locals!

5. Apps

Hi, my name is Anjali and I’m a technology junkie. I’ll admit, my phone might be overloaded with more fitness apps than I’d care to admit, but they can be a really great way to help you stay on track with fitness while you’re traveling. I have WOD Genius and WOD Generator to help me put together travel and bodyweight WODs, Virtual Trainer Resistance Band to help me with workouts using the bands, and Simply Yoga for the days I want to be a bit gentler on my body. We live in an age where your iPhone can be everything from your journal to your personal trainer – so why not let it?

These are some of the ways I plan to stay fit on the road, but I always love hearing about other people’s methods for exercise while traveling! If you have any suggestions (or any good apps I need to know about) let me know in the comments below!

P.S. Want to know more about how you can start living the travel lifestyle? Check out my book, “Quit Your Job & Travel The World”, available now on Amazon!

How To Quit Your Job And Travel The World

How To Quit Your Job And Travel The World

I’ve been asked by many people, many times since publicly announcing my new journey exactly how to quit your job and travel the world. Not that I’m an expert by any means (I only just did it, we’ll see how successful I am!), but many people want to know how I think it’s even remotely feasible that I’ll be able to travel full-time after leaving my career as a lawyer. In some ways, there was a lot of thought that went into it; in others, barely any thought at all. Regardless, in this post, I’d like to give you some basic overview steps on how to quit your job and travel the world. Hopefully getting an idea of the steps I took to begin my journey will be helpful to you as you start to think about your own!

1. Think about if traveling is what you really want.

Sure, this seems obvious, but in my experience, this is a step many people miss in planning their lives. I’m guilty of it myself – I went to undergrad, then law school, then started practicing law without ever really thinking critically about how I wanted to live my life. Ultimately, I realized I needed to work for myself, but more than that, I realized I really wanted to see the world, meet new people, and discover new ways of connecting us all. If you are thinking about how to quit your job and travel the world, make sure you actually want to travel first!

2. Research ways to make money on the road. 

Research, research, research. This is a theme you’ll see consistently in this post because it is, quite frankly, one of the most important things you should be doing!  First and foremost: research ways to make money on the road. It’s the rare few of us that has enough money saved up to travel endlessly without working, so looking at tools to earn an income while traveling is immensely important. For me, it was easy – I had been writing since I was in undergrad, even working at The Huffington Post for a while as a front-page editor, so I knew that I wanted to develop a freelance career to put my passion to work. While it may not be as cut and dry for you, there are lots of ways to make money on the road – you just have to pick one that is right for you.

3. Research accommodations that will work for you.

Speaking of “right for you” and more research – the next thing you should do is research accommodations that you want. The last part is critical – there are a range of accommodations you can utilize for full-time travel like hotels, hostels, AirBNB, work exchanges, but the key is to find accommodations, or a mix of accommodations, that you can see yourself really liking long-term. For me, it will be a mix of all of these things – some cities I’ll stay in an AirBNB, some cities I’ll do a work exchange and sometimes, I might just park myself at a hotel for a few days. The key is to remember this is your life now – not a vacation – so you should be making sure you’ll be happy with your accommodation plans as long as possible.

4. Quit your job – respectfully, with notice, and without burning any bridges.

So, of course I quit my job as a lawyer – I had to in order to follow my dream! What I didn’t do, however, is do it disrespectfully. I’m a big believer in trying your hardest not to burn bridges (after many youthful mistakes along the way) and this situation was no different. I spoke to my law firm about why I was leaving, gave them plenty of notice to hire my replacement, and am continuing to work hard until my very last day. There’s no need to add a sour note to anything when beginning your new life – so try to make leaving your old one as positive as possible.

5. Start to work on some of your on-the-road money-making while still employed.

Although I’ve seen several posts where people bought a one-way ticket to Thailand with $1500 in their bank account, that’s just not me. I’m too much of a planner, too much of a Type A personality and way too stressed out to be that lax about my travels. Instead, I worked really, really hard (and am still doing so!) in the weeks leading up to my leaving – not only have I been working full-time at my law firm, I’ve also been working round the clock to build up my freelancing career, and learning new skills like content marketing and video editing for my blogs and YouTube channel. You might not need to do exactly what I did, but starting to build up some income while you still have the support of your old job will never be a bad idea.

6. Make lists – lots of them!

Evernote is one of my favorite organizational tools and I’ve been using the heck out of it in preparing for my new life! I have a list of resources for accommodations, I have a list of puppy-friendly travel websites, I have a list of online freelancing markets where I can work – and that’s just the beginning! I also made a “To Do Before I Leave” list and a “To Pack” list, among others. Organization will be your friend when making any dramatic change – especially when you’re learning how to quit your job and travel the world!

7. Don’t forget the basic essentials.

Health insurance, your prescriptions, car insurance, cell phone plan, passport renewal, driver’s license update – these are all unfortunately very mundane things that you need to have set and ready before you leave for full-time travel. Forgetting even one of these important things can spell disaster – so don’t let your excitement of traveling run away with you and don’t forget that you are still an adult, that needs to do at least some adulting, in order to make your dream happen.

8. Just do it.

Yep, after all the thinking and research and preparation – the only thing left to do is to get up the gets and do it. Sorry, no words of wisdom here other than this: if it’s truly your dream to quit your job and travel the world, don’t let anything stop you.

P.S. Want to know more about how you can start living the travel lifestyle? Check out my book, “Quit Your Job & Travel The World”, available now on Amazon!

How To Decide On A Full-Time Travel Pack (I Just Learned)

How To Decide On A Full-Time Travel Pack (I Just Learned)

Despite my immense and deep hatred of shopping (and shopping-related research), I actually did some! And luckily, it paid off: I finally decided on my travel pack.

Now, although I think the pack I actually chose is less significant than the process of shopping for it, I ended up going with the Deuter Futura Vario 50 + 10. I liked the fit in the store, I like the look (I know this seems shallow, and maybe it is, but it’s important to me to like carrying around the pack, since it will be going with me everywhere!) and I like the price!

So here’s a readers’ digest version of the process: I looked up a few packs online, went with a friend to a sporting goods store, went home and looked up a few more bags online, went to a travel store and tried on a few, empty, went back home, narrowed down the ones I thought I wanted, went back to the travel store and this time tried on a few packs after they were full of weight, did some final research on line, and decided on the Deuter.

Importantly, I learned a few things in the process and I’d like to share them with you.

  1. Think about how much space you might need before you get to the travel store. Then, when you get there, forget that and ask someone more knowledgeable for their opinion! I had some ideas of what size bag I might need based on the amount of stuff I planned to take, some online research and other travel blogs I had read. When I walked into the store though, I knew that whoever was helping me would be far more knowledgeable about travel than I was! And that open mindedness paid off: the pack I originally wanted would probably have been way too big, not only for my tiny frame, but also for carrying on planes. I’m really glad I listened to store associate!
  2. Consider the price, but don’t go with the cheapest option. Before I started shopping for packs, I thought I might spend between $50 and $100 dollars, because I had no experience with this type of product. Turns out, I was way off! When I started looking around, though, I realized shopping for a full-time travel pack was about the value and its usefulness and reliability over time. They can get pricey, but considering all of your belongings are going to be in this pack for who-knows-how-long, it’s worth it to spend a little bit of money.
  3. Travel packs are different than hiking packs – make sure you are getting the right one! Something else I didn’t know! Turns out, travel packs and hiking packs aren’t the same thing – the suspension is different, how they carry weight, and even how they load. Make sure you are getting the right thing for your journey.
  4. The fit across the shoulders and waist is the most important. Carrying your entire life around will probably get a little bit heavy! The point is to have a bag that fits what you need and doesn’t screw up your back. Make sure you get a pack that fits your shoulders almost like a glove and feels good around your waist.
  5. Look for things like sturdy and water-resistant material, multiple compartments, and the possibility of clipping things on. Before you buy, make sure you have an idea of the features that will be most important to you (and if you don’t, ask for help!). That said, consider universally-important features like an overall study pack that will be good in all kinds of weather and that can be well-organized with multiple pockets and hooks.
  6. Finally, try it on FULL. I was a little bit resistant to this idea at first (like an idiot), but now, I’m so glad I took the time at the store to see how the different bags felt full. The bag I thought I liked when it was empty ended up being an absolute disaster when it was full of weight! Many travel stores are happy to help you through this process, so take advantage of it!

I’m happy to be done with bag shopping and can’t wait for my Deuter Futura Vario to arrive. Below, check out some of my adventures in finding my fit! I hope this post helped all you travelers and future travelers, and if you have any more questions or just wanna chat with me about your favorite bag, comment below or drop me a line at [email protected]

To life!