Friday 3 August 2012

Q & A: Hotel Training

I am going to be traveling for a little bit this month. We will be staying in a hotel and I was wondering if you had any suggestions regarding this?

Hotel training can be challenging. The best option is to find a gym in the area. With a quick google search, you may find soemthing helpful in the area. If you have not decided on a hotel yet, picking one based on being close to a gym (and a place to get healthy food) is a great idea. Also, some gyms like the YMCA offer more reasonable drop-in rates. This would allow you to do your normal training session as planned.

Many hotels now do offer a “fitness room” but it is usually not what we would call a high performance athlete training centre. At best you’ll get a few dumbbells, a multi-station weight machine and a bunch of cardio equipment. If you get one of these, you may have to modify training a bit. Here is a sample of what you could do:

Sample Hotel Fitness Centre Athletic Workout:
Notes: sets x reps. Adjust as needed. This will not be appropriate for everyone. 2a) and 2b) means do a set of 2a) exercise, have a short rest, do a set of 2b), have another short rest and then go back to 2a and repeat. Click on the links for videos of the exercises.

1) Speed work: do sprints if you can find a safe place to do so – if not, don’t worry about it.
2a) Goblet Squat (if heavy enough dumbbell) or Split Squats or Bulgarian Split Squats: 2-3x5-7. If the gym offers insufficient weight for all of these, you could do 1 and 1/4 Bulgarian Split Squats or 1-leg squats (sorry, no video on this one yet).
2b) Jump Squats (body weight or holding light dumbbells) or Split Squat Jumps: 2-3x5
3a) Pull-Ups or Chin-Ups (hopefully they have a bar for pull-ups. If not you could do lat pulldowns or extra rows). Do 15-35 reps in as many sets as it takes - stop each set 1-2 reps short of failure.
3b) 1-Arm DB Press: 2-3x5-7 (if you cannot get a heavy enough dumbbell, just do 1-2 sets of almost max reps and rep out on the last one (still stopping before proper form goes).
3c) 1-Leg Romanian Deadlift with dumbbells or 1-leg Hip Thrust with dumbbell(s) on lap
4a) Push-Ups (regular, feet elevated, weight on back or dumbbell between legs): 2-3x max reps (only go all out on last set and even then stop with good form still). If this is way too easy and you can't find a way to load the push-ups enough, do explosive push-ups instead for 5-8x3.
4b) 1-Arm DB Rows or Seated Cable Rows (match sets to push-ups and do at least that many reps)
4) RKC Plank : 1-2x4-8 reps, 10 sec hold per rep. Don't do this if you have high blood pressure!
5) Conditioning: running hotel stairs if you can (try not to be too noisy, sets and lengths may vary depending on what you have, just carefully run up a few flights, walk down and repeat for 10-15 minutes total time)
6) Recovery: pool – enjoy some gentle swimming after your recovery drink!

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