When I was first starting out on my own health and fitness journey, working out almost always meant a pricey gym or studio and endless rows of complicated equipment. Of course, our options have evolved a lot since then. Along with having more time with my family, it’s one of the positives that I’ve taken away from the unusual circumstances of the last few years.
COVID really expanded the possibilities more by helping all of us see the potential and power of having a digital gym on our phone, tablet, or smart TV. We can still have access to all of the guidance, inspiration, and community support we need, but now we don’t even have to leave home.
Now we can squeeze in a solid workout in less time than it used to take us just to drive back and forth to a class or fitness center. It has also never been easier to bring our workout routines along for the ride when we travel. With that in mind, I’ve mapped out a series of targeted and total body workouts that can easily be done without any special equipment in less than 20 minutes.
Pick and choose or mix them up to keep your momentum going when you are on the road.
An ab workout is always a great practice while traveling without any equipment needed. From improving our balance and posture to boosting our confidence, stronger abs are an easy way to improve the way we look and feel. It’s actually possible to squeeze in an amazing ab workout while traveling in just ten minutes. Just dedicate two minutes to each of these ab movements and your core will be sore in the very best way. My top 5 best ab exercises are dancer bridge, dead bugs, ladies crunch, spinal crunch, and yogi bicycle taps.
A sexy booty burn is always one of my favorite workouts on the go. Of course, the gluteus maximus is the biggest muscle in our body, so while it might seem like a pretty narrow focus, you will definitely feel the intensity right away. Just like a good ab workout, the glutes don’t actually require a huge amount of time to get a good target tone and sculpt. My best butt workout clocks in at less than twelve minutes, and features six of my favorite ab moves: cheerleader, hip pulse, scorpion, tap & kick, triple booty, and triple booty combo.
Cardio is always a good idea, and it’s definitely a no-brainer when traveling. I love to take 20 minutes or so two to three times a week to really get my heart rate up. There are so many cardio exercises that target different areas of the body that it is possible to get in a full body workout just through cardio! Some of the best exercises – notice that I didn’t say my favorite ones – that I recommend are the ½ burpee, around the world lunge, bridge, jackknife abs, lunge hop, lunge, ninja lunge, twist, ride, rock n roll, skaters, tic toc, total body pushups, shot put, squat presses, triple plank, and triple jax. Feel free to mix and match to keep your workouts interesting!
It seems like legs are one of the most commonly skipped workouts, even at home, so don’t let traveling be an excuse for missing out on leg day. Our legs are powerhouses that help us stand strong and get to where we need to be in life and in health. And it’s possible to get strong, lean legs with a ten-minute bite-sized burn! Forget about weights or special equipment. Eight of my favorite leg exercises are the 1-2-3 jump, can-can kick, double ballet squat, lunge twist, mega leg plank, speed skaters, triple leg lift, and wide running man.
Stretch & Recovery Flow
Yoga is such a wonderful practice that you can take anywhere. I actually do quite a bit of sweat yoga, but for traveling I highly recommend a good stretch and recovery flow. Even vacations can sometimes be intense with prep, travel, settling in, jetlag, sightseeing, and back again. It’s nice to have some mindful movements in your repertoire to help recenter yourself and release stress. I recommend choosing a variety of one to two-minute moves and stacking them to fit your needs. Some of my favorites include cat-cow, cobra, child’s pose, downward dog-frog, reverse lizard to 90-degrees, three-legged dog, triangle pose pyramid with knee raise, and warrior.
It is totally doable to do a total body sculpt in fifteen minutes when away from home. I promise! All you need to do is warm up and time out a minute per motion from my list. I’ll admit that sometimes, I double up with two full sets back-to-back to stretch my workout into 30 minutes, but that is entirely up to you. My recommended set would include chair swimmer, child’s pose pushup, dynamic twisty kickback, lizard kickback, lunge twist, plank roll, reverse warrior crunch, squat stretch, tabletop kickback, and three-legged dog crunch.
An upper body workout may not seem like an ideal equipment-free workout for travelers, because we tend to think of weights and weight equipment for arms, chest, shoulders, and back. And it’s certainly easy to pack some light hand weights when traveling. But with me, weights are always optional. My favorite 14 upper body workout moves, which only need a minute per set, are around the world, bicep press, bicep swing, funky chicken, lat pulls, ninja lunge, over under, raise the roof, standing flies, starbursts, total bicep, tricep bicep, tricep kickbacks, and x stretch.
All of these workouts and more are available via the Brooke Burke Body app, so feel free to bring me along on your travels as well. The only thing better than sweating smart is sweating smart together! It really doesn’t take a huge investment of time to change your body. It just requires a little commitment, a little self-love, and a little sweat equity.
Whether you are traveling for work, for pleasure, or even the holidays, keep yourself on the list.