Summer holidays may be over for this year but that doesn’t mean you can’t plan for next year or grab a winter break. For many a holiday means a break in the routine, upping your alcohol intake and forgetting the diet plan. It doesn’t have to be that way. If you’ve adopted a healthy attitude to life then why not build exercise into your holiday? No one wants to see those hours spent sweating in the gym go to waste inside a fortnight.
There are plenty of European destinations offering specialised fitness breaks, which combine the relaxation you crave with the exercise you need to maintain your routine. You’ll probably learn a new skill or take your burgeoning fitness to a new level. There is the scope to find a new passion or build upon those you’ve already discovered.
Another interesting fact recently reported by the BBC shows that triathlon holidays which encourage people to hone their swimming, cycling and running skills whilst taking a break. There has been a reported 35% increase in triathlon holiday providers on the market with the number of people taking these holidays up by up to 35% too.
Below are five European retreats which will get your pulse racing as well as be great fun. Don’t give up your fitness routine simply because you’re on holiday. You can dump the stress of every day work and home life but still keep your routine as part of your break.
Head out to super sunny Mallorca and punish your thighs with some extreme cycling. The Tramuntuna Mountains are Sir Bradley Wiggins’ favourite training area and anyone looking to test out their cycling skills can certainly give them a shot.
The islands south-west area of Calvia has also been utilised by medal winning cyclists so if you’ve got the cycling bug and want to keep on training whilst soaking up the sun, this may be the break for you.
Head south for a break in Portugal and get stuck into a boot camp no other. Five days of high octane super-hot weather training in a specialist fitness training camp held by Reach. Reach Fitness is run by an experienced trainer who has worked with England rugby stars and other professional athletes. It’s an intensive workout break which is dedicated to pushing you to your limits with the added bonus of fantastic weather and a recovery pool to cool down after beating your bests.
Skiing is one of the ultimate indulgent experiences but it’s also a fantastic workout. Skiing is a high intensity cardio workout once you get used to it and this is especially so if you book onto an exclusive fitness break in the French Alps. A range of companies offer specialise fitness breaks that include further cardiovascular sessions as well as additional indulgent extras including hot tubs with views of the serene lakes.
Endurance runners and sprinters alike should head to the Dolomites. Fitscape run an exclusive retreat for fitness fans of all ages and you could see your fitness being taken to another level. Take the opportunity to improve your running technique utilising their unique clinic and acclimatise yourself to the mountainous surroundings. When you’re not training you can relax completely, unwind with a drink or two and then get back to it the next day.
If you’re easing yourself into your active lifestyle then perhaps take a gentler fitness holiday. Take it at your own pace on a walk along the beautiful German riversides. Consider one of the many self-guided walking tours offered including those along the Rhine Gorge where there is a degree of gradient so you can challenge yourself if you wish to. It’s a great ‘starter’ break if you’re easing your way into a more active lifestyle. Germany is packed full of sights to see from ancient castles to fairy tale villages and if you wrap up warm this break is great for the colder months.
Of course to have a fitness break you don’t necessarily have to go abroad. Plan a staycation, save cash at home and simply spend as much time at your gym as you possibly can. Try out some new classes and devise an especially intensive routine to tone those muscles and push your body that little bit further.
Alternatively book a UK break and find a gym in the local area that you can use while you’re there, to keep your healthy, active lifestyle at the forefront of your mind. With all these examples there really is no excuse to break your routine and you can even switch it up a little considering you’re on holiday. Take the opportunity to try something new. Whether you simply give a new piece of kit a go or visit a completely new gym you’ll feel better for keeping on track, even though it is your holiday time.
by Jessica Ward
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