Staying Fit This Summer

How to pack up and take a vacation without packing on the pounds.


How many times have you returned from a fabulous vacation only to find that your clothes have mysteriously shrunk? Maybe it’s time to give your vacation a makeover. Instead of spending a week stuffing your face at the resort’s all-inclusive buffet, then sleeping it off by the pool (not that there’s anything wrong with that), why not plan a “playcation”? One of the hottest travel trends is getting fit while getting away, and more and more people are trading in their gut-busting debauch for an active escape.


In the past, it was typically young singles and thrill-seekers looking for extreme (and extremely dangerous) experiences who sought out active vacations. But now middle-aged folks are the fastest-growing segment of active travelers. Aging baby boomers have become more health conscious and are no longer content to be just weekend warriors when it comes to fitness.


These days, they are committed to maintaining a healthy lifestyle—even on vacation. Recreational athletes are also embracing adventure travel and using it as a way to up the ante, to push themselves physically while experimenting with new sports and activities. And some people are completely rethinking their idea of holiday and are taking a vacation specifically for the purpose of getting into shape.


Tour planners are taking advantage of this trend. Today you can choose trips geared toward every interest, activity and fitness level, from sport-specific immersion trips to mind/body programs to gender-based retreats. To help find your best match, most companies have a system that rates the level of difficulty of each tour; it’s up to you to decide how energetic you want your trip to be and the proper ratio of rest and relaxation to ripping and running.


Fit trips combine the fun of travel with fitness-oriented activities. Here are few of the most popular choices: