4 Tips for Training Around Travel and Life

Cabo San Lucas

We all have times in our life where training is a little bit more difficult than it should be.

Hell, I work in the fitness industry and there are still times when getting a workout in feels more like a chore than something I actually want to do!

At certain times of the year, my travel really gets cranked up.  I’m a creature of habit, and I definitely like my routines, so when I lose 2-3 days every week to travel, it gets harder and harder to get everything accomplished.

This post is for those of you that lead busy, hectic lifestyles.  Here are four quick and dirty tips I use to help ensure that I stay focused and on track, even around travel and other things that suck up my time.  Enjoy!

1 – Make it a Priority

When things get busy, it’s amazing to see how your priorities shift.

Whether it’s travel, family, work, or anything in between, if you’re serious about your goals you need to make your training a priority.

Does this mean forgetting about your wife and kids? No.

Does this mean passing the buck at work?  Nope.

Quite simply, you need to get it into your head that YOU WILL work out, regardless of what else comes up. Once you’ve done this, I firmly believe you’re already half way home.

This leads seamlessly into my next point.

2 – Schedule Your Training Time

There’s a saying in business that what gets measured gets managed.  I agree wholeheartedly with that sentiment.

I think there should be another quote, something along the lines of what gets scheduled gets done.

We schedule everything else in our lives – appointments, meetings, Little Johnny’s soccer practice, etc.  And amazingly, all these things get done.

Why wouldn’t you schedule a time to get your training session in?

First thing in the morning, lunchtime, after work, I don’t care.  Put it on your schedule and you’ll be surprised at how your workouts start to fall into place.

3 – Be Realistic with Yourself

When I lived in Ft. Wayne five years ago, my life was a lot different.  I had a “job,” and a wife, but that was really about it.

Things are a lot different now.  I own two businesses, a home, I still have my wife (somehow), and a host of other responsibilities.

In Ft. Wayne, I could easily train 4 days per week and it wasn’t an issue. It worked great, as I could train on an upper-lower split and hit each body part twice per week.

Not any more.

I beat myself up for years after moving to Indy trying to figure out how to get 4 training sessions in per week.

And then I gave up.

When life changes, you have to be willing to adapt a bit.  I now train 3 times per week, and I’m having great success with this program/layout.

Could I force myself to train 4 times per week now?


But, something would have to give.

Am I not going to give 100% to my wife?

Am I going to take some of myself away from one of my businesses?

Do you see where I’m going with this?

We all have to make choices.  What’s important is figuring out what “balance” works best for you, and sticking with it.

I have no doubt that most things in your life are important, it’s just figuring out some sort of hierarchy and then dialing it in from there.

And, this leads me into my final point.

4 – Realistic Does Not Equal Optimal

Training four days per week, for me, would probably be optimal given my goals.

But optimal does not equal realistic.

This is something I say to my clients all the time.  There’s what works in a vacuum, or textbook, or perfect world.

And then there’s what works when reality sets in.

If you can train M-W-F-Sa and do your thing, perfect. That’s probably ideal from a training and recovery standpoint.

But what if you have to train M-T-W-Th and then take 3 days off due to work, family commitments, travel, etc.?

Do what you can, and don’t sweat the rest.

So there are four tips from me.  What about you guys?

Any road warriors out there that travel for a living? How do you get your sessions in?

Or people that just live really busy lives – what do you guys do to ensure you keep training?

I look forward to your comments and feedback below!




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  1. Mike,
    Great article. I don't travel much anymore for work, but there are days when I have to be in the office at 4AM and I'm there until the late evening.
    I still do my best to get my workouts in, and I've been good, but I always have a back-up plan.
    I keep a kettle bell and a weight vest near my bed. I know at minimum I can throw do some quick body weight stuff with a weight vest, some kettlebell C&Js, and get-ups and I've at least got something moving on those busy days.
    I've found on the days where things get hectic, it's better to do something than do nothing. As soon as you say it's okay to skip what's realistic, you fall into beating yourself up… and analysis paralysis.
    Great stuff.

  2. Something that has helped me is having a list of bodweight or minimal equipment workouts I can do on the road. This little mental game prevents me from using lack of the right tools as an excuse and I can even get it done in a hotel room in less then 30 minutes.

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