Fear of traveling ruining your physique?
Fear of traveling ruining your physique!?
I believe this to be a genuine reason stopping some individuals from traveling
I wish to believe every person has some degree of wanderlust in his or her DNA, a desire for or impulse to wander, travel and explore the world.
Some overflow with wander and need to go see what the world has to offer at every chance with no second thought, others travel short term once a year, a holiday, while some don’t even leave home.
Even those who don’t travel once a year have a desire somewhere deep down to see more of the world, its hard wired into us but ignored or hidden away behind life’s commitments and responsibilities.
The amount of things that could hold us back would be infinite e.g. work commitments, family, spouse, debt, spouse’s debt.. Etc. etc. life! I will reframe from trying to list them all as 1. I don’t have enough coffee in me and 2. That’s not the aim of this post.
I want to talk to you, yes you; you’re reading this for a reason right? Health and fitness is your thing and it’s putting the brakes on your travel plans.
See if any of the following points relate to you.
I will loose all of the hard work I have put into my physique
My daily routine will be ruined
I get too stressed when I miss meals and training to even consider it
What about eating every 3 hours? Counting my calories?
Would I be able to hit the gym 5 x per week?
What will others think if I start to loose muscle or put on weight?
What will I think of myself?.. My biggest critique
For many of us health and fitness is a huge part of our lives, more than surface value, it stems deep and is a part of who we are, our identity, If we loose this then who are we?
Before I left home I had got myself into a position I didn’t want to be in, but I felt stuck, I had recently performed an extremely strict fat loss phase, 12 weeks of training 1-2 times a day and eating 6x per day, it was pretty exciting throughout and I really took great pride in the results, seeing your body change weekly is extremely empowering! I felt confident and driven.
Moving on to the final days of my cutting phase and a photo-shoot, I had hit my body fat goal and looked pretty good (if I say so myself..) but what now… I had reached the goal through some pretty extreme methods, which I was now tired of, I didn’t care much for eating 6 meals a day anymore or training twice a day, but I felt stuck! I had gotten in the best shape of my life this way and thought I would have to continue on this path to achieve even more, my heart wasn’t in it, this wasn’t me but I couldn’t see an alternative at the time.
I had been thinking about travel for a few years now but had excuses stopping me, I had started a new business back home and there was now fear involved, fear of loosing my body and part of my identity.
Stopping the 6 meals and training twice daily was a must, going with my gut and booking traveling had to happen, I called the travel company for a plan and booked it all the very next day! This was one of the most exhilarating things I have ever done! Way more so than getting a set of abs I can tell you that much!
My wanderlust overpowered my fears of stepping out of my routines, it was a necessary step, I had started overly obsessing over food, meal timings, calorie counting, weekly weigh ins, strength levels. I felt like I was developing the early stages of an eating disorder and needed to break the cycle in a big way, I needed traveling for my mind.
How I see my training, nutrition and life now is vastly different to the guy I left back home. I’m mentally in a better place, putting me in a better state for physical changes and a higher quality of life, for others and myself.
What you need to know
You won’t loose your hard work
If you’re a well trained individual your not going to fall apart as soon as you step on the plane. The Memes convincing you more than 1 rest day will cause you to “loose all of your gains” are false. In reality 1-2weeks off training will make no difference to muscle mass and strength when still eating adequately, around the 1 month mark you may start to loose some muscle and strength.
You will no doubt feel worse off after a few days without training but this is all mental, you may feel weaker and smaller but rest assured you are fine! The detraining effect takes a while to show, your body is clever! Its not going to throw away muscle tissue as soon as you miss a days training!
If you love training this will never be a problem anyway, you can train anywhere you go, there are gyms everywhere if you look hard enough and you don’t even need one, bodyweight exercise can be done anywhere and gets the imagination going, some of my most enjoyable workouts have been bodyweight, which is now a huge staple of my own training and the programs I write.
Being out of your routine will be good for you
I love a routine as much as the next person, a well structured routine can help us to avoid stress and unnecessary decisions daily, but loosing your daily routine won’t bother you when its replaced with new experiences.
Your routine has given you habits, the positive of which such as food choices and training will stay with you despite the loss of routine (hopefully you will learn to drop the bad). You will be free from the vices you may have set on yourself and begin to relish in your newfound freedom, let the spontaneity commence!
Missing meals and training won’t break you
As mentioned before, missing a few training sessions will make little to no difference. Missing meals is something you should forget all together, your traveling so enjoy new food, if your mindful of what you eat and amounts then you shouldn’t have a problem.
Eat protein with meals whenever possible, stay well hydrated, don’t gorge unnecessarily, learn to listen to your body, AKA don’t eat until your stomach protrudes past your belt buckle.. Track food when possible if it makes you feel at ease. You don’t have to abide to the ancient advice of eating every 3-4 hours, eat when you can and if that’s twice a day then make it count!!
I went through periods of intermittent fasting to ensure any weight gain was minimized and it worked great, fasting until early afternoon worked well allowing a big lunch and dinner of the local cuisine along with a couple drinks if an occasion arises.
You will gain balance, perspective and an evolved mindset
Although it will be hard at first and you may fight your new situation, you will begin to find a balance and revel in it. I started off feeling paranoid of my body, training limited by previous injury my exercise limited to mostly walking, my fellow travelers would complement me, making comments on my physique with me shrugging them off and replying negatively about my current state, we are all our biggest critique.
Seeing new cultures, making new friends and having once in a lifetime experiences forced these past traits to retreat, I was growing again, just as we aim to constantly develop in training we need to strive for the same as people. Through different stages in life people do change, this shouldn’t be negative. I used to joke with friends, the comment “you changed man!” to rub salt into a disagreement, looking to purposely cause argument for funs sake! But we do change; some make the wrong moves and learn from them, most of us will, it’s the best way to learn!
The only failure is not learning from something
If you stand still your never going to get anywhere, take a step in a new direction, listening to your gut feeling, you will work it out, you just need to take the first step, book a ticket! The rest will work out, for better or worse you will gain clarity from the move and get that monkey off your back.
Or ignore the urges so you tell your children you thought of traveling once but didn’t go because you could’ve lost an inch on your chest or lost sight of an ab…