7 ways to work exercise into your vacation

June 30, 2015

Whether you're travelling for business or pleasure, odds are you'll be sitting for long periods on your way to your destination. Plan to counteract this by using these seven tricks to get around on some good old-fashioned foot power during your vacation.

7 ways to work exercise into your vacation

1. Zero in on the best park

Or best zoo, or garden!

  • Order tourism information from your destination's chamber of commerce, or search online for attractions to visit that involve plenty of walking or other exercise, such as nature preserves and museums.

2. Seek out bike tours

Ask your travel agent or search online for bicycle tours in the city you'll be visiting.

  • Unlike taxi or bus tours, you can see attractions at a slower pace, and you can smell, touch and savour your surroundings.
  • And, unlike walking, you can easily see miles of attractions in a few hours without suffering from sore feet.

3. Take a stroll through town

Visiting the social hub of a town or city is the surest way to absorb the local flavour.

  • You'll be able to size up restaurants for tonight's dinner, pick up souvenirs at shops and meet locals who can give you insiders' advice on must-see attractions.

4. Be an early bird

If your trip includes a visit to an amusement park, zoo or boardwalk, arrive the minute it opens.

  • The place may be much less crowded, and you'll be able to spend your time seeing and doing what you came for rather than standing in line getting sore feet and a sunburn.

5. Tango or fish like the locals do

You know the old saying: "When in Rome, do as the Romans do."

  • Well, if you're in Argentina, take a tango lesson.
  • In Hawaii, learn to hula.

Wherever your travels may take you, there's an activity that will help you learn more about the area and its people — and keep you moving in the process.

6. Hunt for great photos

Make a wish list of at least 25 photos that you'd love to snap during your vacation.

Options might include birds or wildlife in their natural setting; a selfie at a cathedral or fortress; a sunrise; and a panoramic shot taken from a high vantage point.

  • Give yourself an ambitious list that requires walking all over town to get the shots you want.

7. Hit the museum at midday

  • Even if you're vigilant about sunscreen, it's smart to move inside during the hottest hours — usually between noon and 2 p.m. — to ensure that you don't overheat or get a sunburn.

Diabetes may cause your sunburn to heal more slowly or lead to infection, and it may be harder for people with diabetes to cool themselves. Use these hours to see a museum exhibit, grab a bite to eat or take a scenic trip by car or covered boat.

Remember: slather on the sunscreen

Some diabetes drugs, such as glipizide and glyburide, can make your skin sensitive to sunlight. And a bad sunburn can raise your blood sugar and lead to infection.

  • Use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, and put it on more liberally than you think you should — studies show most people don't use nearly enough and don't reapply often enough.
  • If you have trouble reaching your legs while applying sunscreen, ask a companion to do it for you, or buy the spray-on kind to make the task easier.
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