When it comes to exercise on the road, I get bogged down easily. Special gear, sneakers, appropriate clothing to sweat in: They can all seem like insurmountable hurdles when I’m packing. Most of the time, I’m traveling carry-on, and I simply don’t have the room for exercise shoes and clothes. And even if I do manage to bring the right gear, I often don’t have time when I’m on the road to get in a full workout.
But about six months ago, I downloaded Seven, a seven-minute workout app that works perfectly without special gear and is well suited to a typical hotel room. The idea of the seven-minute workout got a lot of buzz last year. But it wasn’t until I started using it on trips that I really understood its value for well-intentioned travelers like me, who want to maintain good habits but aren’t part of that exercise-above-all tribe of athletes you see running full-tilt on hotel treadmills at 6 in the morning.
There are a bunch of seven-minute workout apps to choose from; some are a few dollars, others are free. They all follow the same pattern: Do a certain exercise intensely for 30 seconds, then rest for 10 seconds, then do a different exercise for 30 seconds, and so on, until seven minutes have passed. The combination of movements (jumping jacks, squats, wall sits, crunches, push-ups, and so on) is meant to work the whole body over the course of the workout.
I opted for Seven, one of the many free versions. It gets a little repetitive as a daily exercise regimen, but for travel, it’s just about perfect. It doesn’t take much time, it requires no special gear beyond a chair with arms and a floor you’re willing to lie on to do crunches, and it gets the blood pumping.
The only downside is that, because I tend to do the workouts early in the morning (shortly after waking up and before showering), I worry about the noise. Sure, the jumping-jacks portion of the workout only lasts 30 seconds, but the entire time, I’m trying to land lightly for fear of waking up a blissfully slumbering downstairs neighbor.
When I pack now, I no longer have that lingering guilt about not lugging workout gear. Instead, I make sure I have my phone and charger, and I know that a quick workout is waiting for me whenever I’ve got seven minutes to spare in my hotel room.
(Photo: Getty Images)
You Might Also Like:
- Three Ways to Pack Workout Shoes Without Wasting Space
- Wellness Travel 101: Vacation Your Way to a Better You
- Healthy Plane Snacks Under 250 Calories
We hand-pick everything we recommend and select items through testing and reviews. Some products are sent to us free of charge with no incentive to offer a favorable review. We offer our unbiased opinions and do not accept compensation to review products. All items are in stock and prices are accurate at the time of publication. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.