5 ways to keep up your fitness while traveling, according to Olympian Tom Daley

  • Summer is a busy time for travel, especially as the world prepares for the Olympics in July.

  • Business Insider spoke to Olympian Tom Daley about his top tips for staying fit while traveling.

  • Daley recommends stretching, meditation, and looking for free activities near your destination.

The sun is shining longer and temperatures are getting hotter, which means summer is officially here.

Nearly 82% of American adults surveyed by The Vacationer plan to travel this season, with about a quarter planning to do so internationally. Between the Olympics in Paris, Wimbledon in London, and another leg of Taylor Swift's Eras Tour, Europe will likely be a popular destination.

But as exciting as traveling is, it can also be stressful. Long flights, jet lag, and packed itineraries can make it hard to prioritize physical and mental fitness.

Business Insider spoke with four-time Olympic medalist and British diving legend Tom Daley through his partnership with Trainline, a European train booking app, to learn his top tips for staying fit while traveling this summer.

Whether you're headed to Paris like Daley, the Eras Tour, or any other corner of the world, here are his five recommendations to maintain your physical and mental health while on the move.

The most important thing to remember when traveling is your routine, according to Daley.

Tom Daley attends the GQ Men Of The Year Awards 2023.
Tom Daley attends the GQ Men Of The Year Awards 2023.Mike Marsland/Contributor/WireImage

Daley, 30, told Business Insider that the most important thing when traveling is to try to maintain some kind of routine.

He started diving at age 7 and made his Olympic debut in 2008 at just 14 — understandably, Daley said his body has changed since then, impacting how he can and can't travel.

"When I was younger, traveling when you're 10 to 15 years old, you don't really have many issues," he said. "But then as soon as you start getting a little bit older, and as I've been more of an athlete now for 23 years, I just have to start thinking about how can I look after myself best when I'm traveling," he added.

The concept of routine is also an important part of how he stays disciplined while training and focused during competitions.

"I think the one way to be able to stay motivated and determined and committed to what you need to do is a sense of routine. Being able to stick to the routine, being able to know what you're going to be doing, when, it's all about the consistency," he said. "If you consistently stick to your routine, then you'll eventually get there."

So, if you normally like to go for a walk in the mornings, plan to do the same thing on vacation; this will give you something familiar to do while you're away from home and make it easier to continue that part of your routine once you're back.

Whether you're traveling by train, plane, or car, don't forget to get up and move around.

Woman walking to her seat on a train.
Woman walking to her seat on a train.Rizky Ade Jonathan/Shutterstock

While we understand wanting to use all your travel time to binge-watch "House of the Dragon" or "RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars," it's a good idea to take a break to move around.

"Even just being able to get up and move around, being able to stretch your legs," Daley said. "I often find myself doing lots of things to be able to stay as loose and nimble as possible."

The American Heart Association recommends getting extra steps in at the airport by skipping the conveyor belt people-movers and walking around while waiting for your plane to board. The AHA also recommends staying active during long road trips by frequently stopping to stretch or take short walks around rest areas.

In-seat stretches are also a good way to stay loose.

Woman stretching in her seat.
Woman stretching in her seat.panyajampatong/Shutterstock

"I try to find myself doing in-seat stretches, as far as standing up and stretching your legs out, stretching your arms out," Daley said.

Stretching is beneficial because it can help improve flexibility, mobility, posture, and mental health.

Some seated stretching options include neck, shoulder, wrist, and ankle rotations. These motions can improve circulation and allow you to avoid feelings of stiffness.

Daley recommends meditation to keep your mental fitness strong while traveling, too.

A young man on a train.
A man on a train.aappp/Shutterstock

Daley told BI that he's found meditation "can be really, really useful to be able to arrive as fresh as possible."

Some of his personal meditation tips include focusing on contact points, such as where you're touching the floor or seat. He also recommends counting where you inhale on one and exhale on two — and so on — until you reach 10.

"It's being able to keep your mind constantly active, but then also not really thinking about anything other than breathing. But once you get the hang of it, it's really useful," he said.

The benefits of meditation range from better focus and concentration to improved self-esteem and self-awareness, as well as reduced stress and helping manage anxiety or depression.

Once you've arrived at your destination, remember to take full advantage of your surroundings.

Couple plays tennis.
A couple plays tennis.wavebreakmedia/Shutterstock

Daley said there are "so many amazing things to be able to do around Europe," like playing tennis on public courts, surfing, or his favorite, wakeboarding.

Whether you're into hiking, biking, or water sports, Daley's "Summer Sports Tour of Europe" has other recommendations to help you stay active on vacation.

Read the original article on Business Insider