When was the last time you thought about packing dumbbells in your carry on? Probably never. I mean, I’m a fitness professional and I don’t always think about bringing my own equipment when I travel. I usually rely on the hotel gym to be adequately stocked, or I plan to check out a local facility. But there have been occasions when I’ve been away from home and wanted a tool or two to help me get my fit on.
Case in point: Once I was at the playground with my daughter and wanted to squeeze in a workout sesh of my own, but the only things I had in the car were a bunch of empty plastic water bottles (waiting to be recycled!) and a random stretch of speaker wire. If you follow my posts on People.com, you know that I MacGyvered those materials into some handy workout equipment. The wire and two of the bottles became a jump rope, and I filled two more bottles with sand to create a set of dumbbells. With a little ingenuity you can turn almost anything into workout equipment!
A jump rope is a killer cardio tool, and the number of fitness moves you can do with a pair of dumbbells is endless. Whether you thought about packing these items ahead of time or made your own, here’s a quick workout to try in your hotel room, by the pool, or in your living room (staycation, yeah!).
Cardio Warm Up
Jump rope for 1 minute, then rest for 30 seconds. Do 4 sets.
Do these moves as a non-stop circuit—no breaks in between! Repeat the circuit 3 times.
Reverse Lunges with Dumbbells: Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, arms extended down towards the floor, hold a dumbbell in each hand. Step back with your right leg, keep pelvis neutral, and drop your back knee toward the ground. Come back up, return to your start position. Repeat on the left side. That’s 1 rep. Do 20 reps.
Dumbbell Curl Press: This exercise is great because it works your biceps and shoulders at the same time. Start with arms at your side. Hold your dumbbells, and keep your palms facing your body. Curl your arms up to your shoulders, and then lift them above your head, pressing towards the sky. Staying in control of the movement, bring your arms back down to your shoulder, then your sides. Do 20 reps.
Spider Planks: This move hits your rectus abs in the front of your midsection and your obliques—so long, love handles! Start in plank position (on your elbows or your hands). Engage your core, and draw your left knee towards the outside of your left shoulder. Return to plank position, and then bring your right knee to the outside of your right shoulder. That’s 1 rep. Do 20 reps.
Finish the workout with a final jump rope set. Jump for 1 minute, and then rest for 30 seconds. Repeat 4 times.
This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for medical diagnosis or treatment. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or condition. Always check with your doctor before changing your diet, altering your sleep habits, taking supplements, or starting a new fitness routine.