Monday 26 September 2016

My Health & Fitness Travel Essentials

   I mentioned in a post a couple of weeks ago that I was going on holiday, at long last, with Seeg and his parents. We're off to Texel Island, one of the dotty islands that arc over the northernmost part of the Netherlands, and we'll be there for about 4 days before heading back to the mainland and staying in his parents' place in Arnhem for the last three. It's going to be a simple week of walking and fresh air, and I can't wait.
   But holiday though it may be, I'm still a health and fitness nut so there are a few travel must-haves that I always gather up before I go - you know, for the one week of the year that I'm actually not in my house.
   But there are a few things I consider essentials that are impractical to take away - a 30-serving jar of matcha, lots of vitamin bottles and so on, for example, are not practical - and I've managed to find travel-friendly alternatives to satisfy my vanity and I wanted to share them with you all.
   So, rather than make a fake 'what's in my bag' post - because the lack of tampons and the like suggest that the vast majority of those posts are not actually genuine - I thought I'd share my health and fitness travel essentials, and other very vital bits and bobs!

   Tea. A cup of matcha a day is a habit I've made that I don't like to break, and though I usually use PureChimp or ClearSpring for my matcha, Teapigs are more travel-friendly with their single serving matcha sachets. They won't break like a glass jar, and neither are they bulky or heavy. They are perfect for your handbag, too, so you're not limited to drinking it at the hotel/bungalow.

   Vitamins. I typically use a variety of supplements in the morning: a probiotic, garlic, omega-3, magnesium & calcium (pre-workout), magnesium (post-workout), iodine, vitamin D and, later in the day, a multi-vitamin. It's not practical to bring all my little bottles, but Vitl, who I reviewed here some time ago, are actually perfect for travelling. They supply a powerful multivitamin, Omega-3, greens and Q10 for skin health in daily serving strips. They're in small, flat packaging which keeps them really travel-friendly.
   I do still bring magnesium, but typically in a much smaller tub and only a few more than I need. I obsess over magnesium because I suffer from migraines, and I found that increasing my intake of magnesium has done wonders for holding them at bay. I used to get a few migraines every month, now the ratio has flipped to about one migraine every two or three months.

   Nibbles. Ohso are great. I've been meaning to review them for some time, but I never seem to remember to do it! They're tiny little chocolate bars - about 13g - full of pro-biotics, and the no added sugar ones are just 63 calories. They're Belgian chocolate, not raw, and are so creamy. They're delicious! But they're also so small that you simply can't feel guilty, and the pro-biotics - what other chocolate has probiotics?! - also mean you're doing your tummy good. They're tiny chocolate bars which also means they're just as handbag-friendly as teapigs matcha sachets, and can be a welcome little pick-me-up on the go, or as something to tide you over if your tummy is rumbling and dinner is still an hour off. They're also in plain and fruity flavours. The raspberry one is the best.
   I've got enough of these to share - two boxes of 14 8.5g bars, one in original and one in orange, both of which are 43 calories each - because it's rude to carry these adorable little tasties in my bag on a walking holiday with three other people if I'm just going to scoff them myself.

   Teeny tiny toiletries. This is a no-brainer, but because shower time is one of my favourite times of the day, I do shrink my toiletries but I don't compromise on the good stuff. Lush have tiny bottles of shower gel and shampoo - even dry shampoo - which are really travel-friendly, good for your hair and skin and are guaranteed to leave you feeling clean even in alien bathrooms.

   Toothbrush. The reason I bring this up is because...well, I lost my travel toothbrush and thought it was a good idea to replace it, which I did with Nano-B. It comes in a handy travel case, so I don't have to worry about it rubbing against everything else in my toiletry bag, but its bristles are also gold and bamboo - yes, gold - which helps to fight off bacteria, keeping your brush and your mouth forever nice and clean.

   Resistance bands. I can't keep still. I must get in a workout, and while it's true that your own body weight can be the most effective tool even for resistance, resistance bands are nice for some pilates and yoga moves, and stretches, the latter of which is a huge part of my post-travel evenings. Because travelling is stressful and it's a nice way to release tension before dinner or bed, and if you're less tense, you're also better company.
   And though I prefer big, long and dynamic workouts, since I'm more active on vacation all throughout the day, I use pilates workouts in the mornings for half an hour. I've got two sequences I've put together using Blogilates and Cassey Ho's pilates book, one upper body, one lower, and I use them on alternating days, and it works really well for me.

   Travel laptop, for the work I won't get done. But it's so small, just 11 inches, that if I don't manage to get any writing done in my downtime, which comes about if Seeg goes to play video games with the boys, then at least I've not lugged it around for nothing. It's also my only reach back into the world while I'm on holiday, and while it's true that I barely use the internet for more than half an hour a day on vacation, it's also my only access to my Etsy shop - responding to customer messages and the like. In such a case, I can't be without it, especially with Christmas just around the corner.

   A book. I'm the kind of person that says "if I have time to read, I have time to write" so I don't actually get much reading done. The only time I do is for about 30-45 minutes in bed on a Sunday morning, but flights and sitting around in airports mean I get an additional chance. Right now I'm reading 'The Tamuli' by David Eddings and I've just about finished the first book in that trilogy.

Bag: Mipac     Book: The Tamuli     Resistance bands: USA Pro     Laptop: HP Stream
Tiny probiotic chocolate bars: Ohso     Matcha sachets: teapigs     Water bottle: Sigg
Travel vitamins: Vitl     Toothbrush: Nano-B      Tiny toiletries: Lush   


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