Without a doubt, traveling can put a damper on your training and diet routine. No more home cooked meals or access to anything that resembles your favorite weights or machines. So, to help you from digging yourself a fitness grave, we asked 50 Cent's former strength coach, nutritionist and cook Jay Cardiello how he helped keep one of the "best bodies in Hollywood" in peak condition, even on the road. Cardiello says it's certainly possible to do but, "I had to deal with a diet and fitness sabotages, which made for a truly a difficult task."
Do Homework On Your Hotel
All hotels are not created equal, and that doesn't just refer to the star ratings. Cardiello says, "Contact the hotel and ask the concierge if they offer a gym." That could sound like a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised how many people neglect to even ask.
Cardiello produced hotel room workouts in the past five issues of Men's Fitness. He says, "They're effective and they work. Plus, you can literally keep your pajamas on and don't have to worry about locking yourself out in the hall."
Wobble Board Bed:
One of his favorites only requires your bed, a pillow and your own body weight. "Turn your bed into a wobble board and concentrate on proprioception training by performing as many push-ups as possible in 60 seconds, then holding a plank for a minute, and finish with standing on a pillow with one leg and performing single legged squats," Cardiello says.
Body Weight Circuits:
When Cardiello was developing moves for his JCORE system, one of most common routines he put 50 Cent through was a "push-up superset with inverted push-ups, superset with bear crawls across the floor, and superset with full squat jumps."
Do a Gym Search
If you're the type that needs a gym environment to get it in the zone, a Google search will be your savior. Ask your hotel if they have any complementary passes available, or call the gym directly and request a day pass. "This may only be convenient for those who have a rental car. But, I can remember jogging some mornings a mile to and from the gym in order to capitalize on greater cardiovascular endurance," Cardiello says.
Bring Your Own Training Gear
No gym available and living in tight quarters? There's countless amounts of at-home training equipment that can help with get the job done. Cardiello says, "You can invest in equipment like TRX or Jungle Gym, which easily pack into any suitcase." Both products come packaged with some workouts you can follow.
Use Rest Stops Wisely
Rest stops are much more valuable today compared to in the past. You can purchase nearly anything under the sun these days. However, there still remains a risk for poor diet decisions. "With 80% of your fitness success laying in the hands of your diet, these stops can literally wreck havoc on your growth," Cardiello says.
"I suggest that you stock up on H2O. Simple dehydration can make that corn dog appealing when, in reality, your body is thirsty."
Time Your Carbs:
"Complex carbohydrates first thing in the morning, such as steel cut oatmeal or even a sweet potato, will provide you with sustained energy while helping you avoid over indulging in a lunch that otherwise should not be put together like bison and nacho cheese," Cardiello suggests.
"Opt for juice rich in pulp. Juice with pulp will fill you up much faster than processed juice resulting in you consuming less and avoiding excess calories. It's true, drinking juice with extra pulp will reduce your total juice consumption by one fourth."
Chance are when you travel, you'd like to go as comfortable as possible, but rocking the baggy sweat pants and hoodie could go hand-in-hand with comfort eating. Cardiello says, "People generally feel better in fitted than loose clothes, which translates into less comfort eating."
Know The Local Restaurants
There's no reason why you shouldn't have a good idea of what's on most restuarants' menus when they're typically posted online. "I recommend scanning over the menu online in order to get a better idea of what food choices will work best for your diet plan. Plus, when people go into a restaurant with a plan, they're less likely to overindulge," Cardiello says.
Ever notice yourself eating too fast? Before you know it, you've eaten too much and you feel bogged down. Cardiello says, "Try switching your utensils over to your non-dominant hand. You'll naturally slow down the rate at which you are feeding yourself. Thus, allowing for your mind to realize that you are full. It's also a great way to stay under the radar if you are dieting." Eating peas, however, could be challenging.
Stay Connected with a Trainer
Getting a workout and diet plan for the road will only be useful if your commitment level is on point. Most people end up leaving it in the bottom of their carry-on. It could be helpful to ask your trainer or a training partner to check in on your to hold you accountable. "I have gone so far as to Skype with some of my clientele and conduct a session," Cardiello says.