Summer is the time for travel, but just because you’re leaving your daily routine behind, that doesn’t mean you need to leave your workout routine behind, too.
And while I’m a huge advocate for finding new, exciting ways to workout while on the road (check out some tips from the GGS Adventure & Travel Guru), there’s value in sticking to your standard routine.
The good news is you don’t need a gym membership to keep yourself going – just throw a couple DVDs in your suitcase for access to great workouts, anytime and anywhere.
When you want to burn out your legs: Element Barre Conditioning
The Element: Barre Conditioning.
DVD requires no special equipment, and nothing more than a sturdy chair for balance. The DVD features two workouts, each lasting about 30 minutes.
Since most of my workouts tend to range in the 45 to 75 minute range, I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about a shorter routine, but Sadie Lincoln wasted no time getting things warmed up, and my legs were shaking like crazy about half-way through.
- Fast and effecitve
- Serious leg work
- Clear instruction
- The instruction is all voice-over, which I found a bit unusual
When you want to dance: Masala Bhangra
I’m no dancer, so I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about the Bollywood-inspired Masala Bhangra DVDs with Sarina Jain, but I can say with enthusiasm that they were a lot of fun!
Unlike some other dance workouts, Jain’s videos really take the time to break down a single dance, giving people like me (those with two left feet), the chance to master individual movements, gradually building them into a single routine.
I can imagine how much fun it would be to pop in the DVD during a girls’ trip, and shake, shimmy and stomp your way through the routine together.
- Clear instruction, broke complicated movements down into easier sequences
- Greater focus on the dance – built up a single routine gradually, giving students the chance to really learn each step
- It’s fun!
- The audio isn’t well-balanced, so there are times when Sarina yells, “Balle, balle!” that it sounds incredibly loud and overpowering
Check out Sarina Jain’s new Indiegogo campaign – she’s offering some great deals on product!
When you want a killer full-body routine: Amenzone Rebel
DVDs are no joke. Using nothing more than your own body weight (and an old tire, if you have one), this workout will make your body burn in less than an hour.
Squats, lunges, burpees, dips and pushups are all on tap, with a few creative movements thrown in for good measure. If you’re hoping for a relaxing vacation workout, this isn’t the one to try, but if your goal is to stay in serious shape while traveling, you really can’t go wrong with these DVDs.
- Body-weight strength and conditioning workout you can do in small spaces
- Great music and energy throughout the routine
- Excellent option for those who love boot camps and high-intensity workouts
- Sometimes the instruction’s lacking, so you have to stop and watch to see what the movement is before jumping in
- To really get the full effect of the workout, the tire comes in handy… but it’s not exactly travel-friendly
When you’re short on time & space: Fit as a Pro
Lauren Sesselmann, professional soccer player and Olympic medalist, offers up an excellent array of short, effective workouts that can be done practically anywhere in her new Fit as a Pro DVD series.
If your travel plans include a hotel stay, opt for the 10-Minute Full Body Workouts for Small Spaces, but if you’ll have some extra space to move, give her 10-minute Full Body Workouts a try.
Each DVD features five, 10-minute workouts that can be performed independently or played back-to-back for a full, 50-minute routine. They require no equipment, and the movements focus on athletic, full-body exercises that will raise your heart rate while strengthening major muscle groups.
- Short workouts perfect when you’re tight on time
- No equipment required
- Can be performed in small spaces
- Athletic exercises, including options you probably haven’t tried
- There’s no music playing the the background (not a deal breaker, but something I noticed)
- A few exercises might not have been appropriate for all fitness levels
When you’re feeling sexy: PopPhysique Insta Pop
PopPhysique isn’t just fitness, it’s art, and you can appreciate the artistic side of exercise when you attend a class or follow along with the Pop Physique DVDs.
This ballet barre-inspired workout is fast moving and focused on toning the thighs, butt, abs and arms. It encourages women to embrace their feminine side, show a little leg, and gain the confidence and flexibility that go hand-in-hand with a high-quality sex life.
If your vacation will include private time with your loved one, these are great DVDs to keep on hand. Just pack some sexy workout gear and get warmed up with PopPhysique before hitting the sheets.
- Challenging, one-hour workouts that will burn out your thighs, butt, triceps and abs
- A focus on improving flexibility
- High-quality instruction
- As someone who is not a particularly strong dancer, and who is not particularly flexible, I found some of the exercises hard to follow along to – may not be the best barre workout for a beginner to start with
- While the instruction is great, there’s a constant barrage of reminders coming at you that I found a bit overwhelming
When you’re at the beach: Cuerpaso Natural Butt Lift & Tummy Tuck
To be honest, I’m a bit hesitant to recommend this DVD – you can read my full review on About.com to learn why – but I’m willing to suggest it here because I think it could make an excellent workout when performed in the sand.
While I’m no fan of the instructor, the movements themselves are challenging, and would be even more challenging when performed on the beach.
And if you have the actual sound of the crashing waves behind you, it might drown out the obnoxious comments coming from Tadeo’s mouth.
- Workout is designed to be performed in the sand
- Could be a lot of fun for a group of friends to try together
- I find the instructor, Tadeo, obnoxious and egotistical
- The vocal instructions are not always easy to follow along with, although the demonstrations tend to be clear
When you want variety: Sweat Unlimited with Sara Haley
If you’re looking for a one-stop-shop workout DVD to take with you on vacation, you can’t go wrong with Sara Haley’s Sweat Unlimited. It includes four different workouts of varying lengths and focuses, making it easy to mix-and-match to meet your needs.
For instance, when you have a bit more time, you can opt for the full 45-minute Sweat Box routine, or the slightly shorter 30-minute Sweat Cardio option.
When you’re short on time, you can do the 5 minute Sweat Extreme routine or the 15-minute Sweat Strength Routine. And when you just want a good stretch, cue up the 5-minute Sweat Stretch workout.
- Lots of flexibility to meet your needs
- Requires little space and no equipment
- High-intensity routines maximize your efforts while minimizing required time
- None to speak of