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10 Tips for Staying Fit at an All-Inclusive Resort

By: Paul Cox

Here are some ways to feel good about keeping your fitness goals even when visiting an all-inclusive resort.

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Approach the Buffet Wisely

Relax. Really. You're on vacation, after all. The impulse to stick to your regular exercise routine may be strong while away from home at an all-inclusive resort, but there are ways to continue progress toward your fitness goals while also giving yourself the break you need.

Food is typically everywhere at all-inclusive resorts. It's super hard to say no to an endless supply of calorie-heavy treats. But, you don't have to deny yourself buffet bliss all vacation long. "You can have a couple days where you can say 'I'm on vacation and I'm going to eat whatever I want to,'" says Atlanta-based personal trainer and nutrition coach Johnnie Perry. "But the other three days my diet is going to consist of healthy choices — protein, vegetables, fruits and nuts." Perry suggests starting your day with a breakfast of protein and fats (like fresh fish). "You'll have more energy and be able to enjoy what's going on during the day."

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Take a Class

Until recently, I had been too shy to try one of those morning pool workouts — the ones where the most flexible member of the resort staff leads a group of vacationers in a routine of stretching and strength exercises under the stares of a lounging pool crowd. But then I took the plunge, literally, and found out that if I wasn't actually closer to being able to touch the floor with my palms afterward, at least I jumpstarted my day with some early exercise. And I made some new friends.

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Take Morning Walks

If you're a runner, you know it can be hard to turn out a quick mile running through a bustling resort. Instead, kick the speed down a notch and enjoy a morning walk before breakfast. "Walking at a steady pace helps your body break into its fat stores," says Perry. "Obviously, walking for five to 10 minutes won't burn a ton of calories. However, if you build that up to three to six hours during the week of vacation, that's a recipe for burning some excess fat without stress on the body."

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Bring the Gym With You

If your destination doesn't offer a full gym, or one with equipment you're not used to, then pack your own gym. A set of resistance bands is a good place to start. Here are some ideas for small-space gym equipment.

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