Tips for the Traveling Athlete

For athletes or someone trying to stick to their fitness goals, fitting in workouts and eating healthy in a new town can be tricky. This is especially true when you have a race on the line. We’ve been there and have a few tips to help you eat well and stay fit.

To AirBNB or Hotel?


If you don’t mind not having a kitchen, often times the added benefits of a free hotel include a gym, spa and concierge for local travel tips that can ease the burden of being in a new location.


Airbnbs are typically less expensive than hotels, and while (sometimes) not as luxurious, being able to prepare your own meals can often be a deal breaker. Knowing you will have some semblance of your normal routine is helpful when managing the stress of being in a new environment.

Fast Food... for Athletes

Having healthy go-to meal options can bring peace of mind when staying in a new city. We’ve been taught to avoid fast-food, but here are some tips on how to navigate the staples you’ll find nearly anywhere you go:

Jamba Juice
  1. Ditch the sorbet when ordering their smoothies and substitute for fresh fruit.
  2. Be careful of the sugar content – always opt for their “all fruit” options.
  3. Sub the granola out (they make it with too much sugar) for added protein powder.
  1. Swap the sandwich for a salad! You can turn any sando into a salad on a bed of greens.
  2. Always ask for extra protein, and pay extra for the avocado (it’s worth it).
  3. Beware of pre-made salad dressing – get that healthy source of fat in your salad from olive oil and balsamic on the side. 
  4. Make it chopped! (The person making it will chop and mix all your ingredients for you).

Not just for coffee anymore, Starbucks is actually a hidden gem when it comes to a healthier fast food options:

  1. Breakfast: Try their Icelandic yogurt which is packed with protein and no added sugars, or their steel cut oatmeal with fresh blueberries.
  2. Lunch: Try their ready made nourish bowls and BYOA (bring your own avocado) to mix in.
  3. Dinner: Bulk up their pre-made salads by combining two together for a well-rounded meal.
emergency food
Here’s what’s in our emergency travel pack:   
  1. Tuna pouches – they are lightweight and can make any meal more satiating.
  2. Protein powder – GU Recovery Drink Mix can keep you feeling satisfied on the go. 
  3. Nut butter pouches – never leave home without them! Squeeze on a banana, a piece of toast, or right into your mouth. 
  4. Stroopwafels – Two stroops’ with a smear of almond butter make a pretty delicious morning snack.
  5. Always avocados – Just keep them at the top of your bag so they don’t get squished. 



Resistance bands and jump ropes are lightweight, easy to pack, and make it convenient to fit in a sweaty workout on the go. You can even stuff them in your shoes to save space in your luggage.



Many gyms offer free trial periods if you’re, “new to the area.” Asking friends in neighboring cities, or scrolling Instagram for fun restaurants or kick butt workout classes can be a welcome treat to your daily routine.



The All Trails app makes finding places to run in a new location safe and exciting. The app is very user friendly and offers great tips on finding accessible trails with specific instructions on how to get there, level of difficulty, and scenic description.


CIRCUIT 1: The bodyweight AMRAP

20 mins, as many rounds as possible


  • 10 burpees (try and do these with a push-up)
  • 50 mountain climbers
  • 20 split jumps (10 on each side)
  • 10 push-ups (on your knees for a modification)

Circuit 2: The Pyramid
Do circuit one time through

  • 30 Burpees, 30 Squats
  • 20 Burpees, 20 Squats
  • 10 Burpees, 10 Squats
  • 4-minute plank hold (alternative center, left, right, center)

We hope these tips helped ease the travel stress or provide inspiration for ways to stay on track during your next vacation!



Jacob Geisler is our GU Tech-Rep and Sports Nutritionist, MS, EC-P, USAT Level 1. He is famous around GU-HQ for adopting an adorable dog named, Maya, who loves playing in the snow.

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