If you're stuck at the airport, you're probably having a less active day. Between waiting on lines, sitting at the gate, and then spending hours on the plane, you're not using those leg and arms muscles as you should.
Of course, an occasional flight doesn't do any harm. Yet, if you're a frequent traveler, especially for work, you could benefit from adding in some activity when you're chilling at the airport. Here are a few fitness tips, thanks to Joey Daoud, CEO and Head Coach at New Territory Fitness.
Walk Whenever Possible
"Easiest one - skip the trams, skip the shuttles, skip the automated walkway and just walk to where you need to go. You're about to be sitting for 3+ hours, this is a great and easy way to get the blood flowing," he says.
A bonus? Turn the walk into a farmer's carry. "Farmer's carries are a great strength movement. They work your abs [and] your forearm, grip, and upper back," he says.
Instead of rolling or slinging your carry on, hold it by the handle and walk. Squeeze your abs as you're doing so. Go for a minute on one side and then switch, spending a minute on the other side. Keep alternating as much as possible.
"Before boarding I'll go into a squat hold - basically just come down into a squat and hold it. I'll rock side to side, shifting my weight from toe to toe. This is a nice stretch to open up my hips and glutes, which'll be inactive for a while," he says.
You can also do wall squats at your gate, too. Whichever method works. To get a little cardio in, do 30 seconds of squats, for about 3 to 5 rounds, he says.
Use the Chair
"To focus on the upper body, a chair is a great way to get a little strength work in," he says.
Use it for push-ups. Find a height that works well for your ability, he says. You can also do a push-up off a wall." If push-ups off the floor are in your repertoire, but the airport floor is looking a little dirty, you can still make chair [or wall] push-ups challenging," he says. Just do them very slowly. "4 seconds pushing up. 4 seconds coming down. You can also face away from the chair and use it to do dips," he says.
Elastic Band Work
Stash an elastic band in your carry-on. "On the plane I'll keep an elastic band with me. I'll put my legs through it mid-flight and open and close my thighs, to work my numb hip-flexors," he says.
Yet, if you don't have one on you, don't fear. "If you don't have any gear you can squeeze and release your glutes (aka butt) off and on for 30 seconds. You can also do some calf raises and ankle rotations," he says.
And a tip? Remember to drink plenty of water - airplane cabins use dry, recycled air, so it's easy to get dehydrated and not realize it.