Video: Exercising Around The World

How do you stay fit while you travel? The hotel gym? Walking around sightseeing? Unless you’re an adrenaline junkie, you probably don’t put too much thought into exercising while you’re on the road. So this video of blogger Steve Kamb exercising around the world provides a refreshing and practical look at how you can stay active anywhere.

Check out Steve warming up with jumping jacks in Bangkok; jumping rope in Shanghai; pounding out the push-ups at Machu Picchu; and doing vertical push-ups in front of the Guinness factory in Dublin. Yeah, this guy is good. Onward, we see Steve running in Monte Carlo; doing some jaw-dropping pull-ups in Santa Monica, California; and swimming in Puerto Rico.

In all, Steve traveled to 16 countries over 18 months and shot footage of himself exercising in all of them. While Steve’s self-funded, round-the-world trip is impressive, I think the true moral of this story is that there’s no reason you can’t stay fit – or even get fitter – while on vacation. All you need is your body and some spectacular destinations for inspiration.

SkyMall Monday: Arm Exercise Weights

SkyMall Monday has a rich history of promoting fitness equipment that combines wellness and the workplace. From the Sit Fit to the Trekdesk and the Springflex UB, we’ve enjoyed showing you how to use SkyMall products to maximize your time at the office. However, we’ve only covered cardio and heavy resistance workouts. What about those of you who just want some low-impact exercise to keep yourself looking and feeling good? We’re not all gym rats who want to get huge, right? Thankfully, there’s something for the normal folks who want to exercise at work without looking like an idiot (or breaking a sweat). The next time you head into the office feeling flabby, you can battle the bulge with the Arm Exercise Weights.Working out doesn’t have to be difficult. Now, it can seamlessly become a part of your day. Are you spending hours on a spreadsheet? That’s a workout! Three-hour conference call? That’s a workout! Shaking off after peeing? That’s an intense workout! Tying exercise to mundane aspects of your day helps you sneak fitness into your routine without even realizing it. It’s like finding out that someone put broccoli in your cupcakes!

Think that the office is no place for exercise? Believe that you need to truly push your body to see results? Well, while you’re sweatin’ to the oldies, we’ll be reading the product description:

Wear your workout wherever you go with Remedy Arm Weights! Turn normal everyday activities into fat burning workouts. A must have if you don’t like to exercise, but want to lose weight. Keep in great shape!

Imagine the everyday activities that you can turn into exercise by adding extra weight to your forearms!

But I still don’t understand how effective the product is. If only it gave me some idea of how using it compared to doing real exercise. Oh, here we go:

Wearing them for just 10 Hours a Day is Equal to a 2-mile Run

So efficient! Replace twenty minutes of exercise – a pleasant and healthy escape from stress – with 10 hours of doing the things that you have to do but with some extra weight attached to your sweaty forearms. Do they make a set for my calves, too?

Finally, we can work out at the office in 10-hour intervals. Dreams, my friends, do come true! We’ll be thin in time for retirement!

Check out all of the previous SkyMall Monday posts HERE.

InterContinental Hotels Group launches EVEN, a wellness-focused hotel brand

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) today announced the US launch of EVEN™ Hotels, its new, wellness-focused hotel brand.

What is a “wellness hotel”?
Over a span of 18 months, IHG closely analyzed emerging trends, conducted studies and talked to over 4,000 customers. The research showed a demand shift to a holistic wellness travel experience, and confirmed an unmet need among customers – staying healthy while they travel.

Keep in mind, these won’t be destination spas or luxury resorts. The operating model for EVEN Hotels will be similar to limited service hotels.

What will guests find?
Guest rooms will be designed for in-room workouts with multi-functional room amenities (e.g. coat rack that doubles as pull-up bars); a best-in-class gym with equipment and group exercise activities; a “Wellness Wall” resource for fitness tips, walking distances, and equipment rentals; and personalized guest services offering advice on fitness options.

Rooms will feature tech amenities such as high speed Wi-Fi, multimedia ports, easy access to outlets, and ample desk space. Additionally, there will be social areas in the bar and lobby. Rooms will also feature green and allergy-friendly amenities, including: hypoallergenic linens, powerful showerheads, natural lighting, LED dimmers, and antibacterial wipes.
Nutritionally designed menus will offer a particular focus on natural, fresh, fit, and energizing meals. In an open-air café and bar, guests can enjoy complimentary coffee, mini-smoothies, and flavored, filtered water with glass bottles available to fill up and take back to their rooms.

The company is so confident in the brand that they have planned an aggressive $150 million growth plan over the next three years and expects to sign contracts for 100 EVEN Hotels within the next five years.

Look for the first locations to be announced soon and the first hotel to open in early 2013.

SkyMall Monday: Giddyup! Core Exerciser

The best pieces of exercise equipment incorporate a healthy dose of sexual innuendo. It keeps the user motivated and makes for great people watching at the gym. I mean, isn’t that basically the whole idea behind the Shake Weight? Here at SkyMall Monday headquarters, we try to keep our exercise low impact, but we always keep an eye out for new and erotic ways to stay fit. Thankfully, SkyMall has introduced us to a fantastic piece of equipment that will keep our muscles ripped and our loins burning. Why just lift weights or do situps when you can writhe around rhythmically while riding the Giddyup! Core Exerciser?We all want rock hard abs and something firm between our legs. Sadly, neither one of those comes easily. But, thanks to the Giddyup! Core Exerciser, you can have your cake and ride it, too.

Think that exercise equipment should be chaste? Believe that mechanical bulls only belong inside sawdust-covered bars? Well, while you mall walk with arm weights, we’ll be reading the product description:

Get all the strength-building benefits of horseback riding without leaving your home. Giddyup! Core Exerciser simulates the motions of horseback riding, causing muscles to involuntarily contract and relax as you balance and stay upright.

You don’t see very many fat cowboys (or adult film stars), right? That’s because horseback riding (and frequent fornication for the entertainment of others) work your core and keep you slim.

How does it work? Thankfully, the Giddyup! Core Exercise comes with an instructional video. So, hold on to either the front or rear straps and take a ride. Fitness is just a gyration (and a series of double entendres scored to a strong bass riff) away!

Was it good for you?

Check out all of the previous SkyMall Monday posts HERE.

Pack a Sports Bra, Already

If you’re looking for something slightly saucy, sorry, there’s nothing sexy about what I’m about to write here. It’s just a bunch of practical advice for traveling women with a bit of, uh, bounce. See, I did some off road travel recently and the one item I regretted not throwing in the overnight bag? A sports bra.

Runners know the value of a good sports bra, most outdoor adventurers know this, hell, I know this, and yet… Clearly, I’m not getting enough high impact excercise if I’ve forgotten. Note to self: Amp up the calorie burning and pack a freaking sports bra.

I keep two brands in my wardrobe; Champion and Moving Comfort. I’ve come to prefer the Champion 360 Max Support model because I find it the most comfortable. I’ve got a whole bunch of these that — oh, I’ll just admit it — I bought in three packs at Costco. They fit well, they’re comfortable enough to wear on long haul flights, and they do the job of keeping everything contained. You can get them in cute colors, so if you’re the type that strips down to a sports bra and shorts (I most decidedly am NOT) you will not look completely ridiculous. The 360 is good in heat, it’s got that wicking technology that keeps moves moisture away from your body. It will set you back about $35.00, though hey, you might get lucky and find the sale pack at Costco.

Moving Comfort is a well-established brand in sports bras and every now and I try another style from them, but candidly, they’re still not quite working out for me. I’ve tried three — the Alexis, the Aurora, and the Grace, all around $40.00. The Alexis I liked just fine, it’s made of a stretchy, wicking material similar to that of the Champion bras I’ve got, but has a much lighter profile, making it even better for hot weather or exertion.

The other two I’m not crazy about. They offer a lot of support, but this is where shopping for bras is tricky. It’s all about fit, and when I’m wearing one of these I feel more compressed than anything else, not a great feeling. Half sizes, ladies, can I get a witness? I’m good for a trail hike in the Aurora, but the Grace has never been quite right, and with both of them, I can’t wait to get out of them and into something that has a lot more flexibility. Even though I want to blame the product, I can’t quite get there, as if I’d tried them in a store rather than getting them online, I’d either not own them or I’d have a proper fit.

I suppose there’s two lessons here. The first one is, as I mentioned, pack a sports bra, already. Not only does it do double duty as a swimsuit top, should you find yourself in that situation, but it will save you from hours of discomfort on bad roads. The other — which you already know, though is a reminder to me — is that you should go try on a bra before you buy it. Go ahead, shop online, that’s where the deals are, but first, head to the lingerie department.

Photo: Mike Baird via Flickr (Creative Commons)