Cruise vacations offer an unbelievable array of foods and beverages that tempt you to indulge. Of course, you are on these trips to enjoy yourself, so you’d love to be able to dive right in with no remorse.
But how can you enjoy your cruise without going overboard? It is possible to savor all the flavors, try all the tastes and still come back home without worrying that you’re going to break the bathroom scale.
Check out our five tips for how to enjoy your cruise without gaining weight.
Find the Gym
The best, guilt-free way to be able to dig in to the delicious and plentiful foods onboard is to earn those calories. Your cruise ship gym is probably located on an upper deck area and in close proximity to the spa. Locate it and use it!
Big ships like Royal Caribbean’s Anthem of the Seas or Norwegian Cruise Line’s Breakaway, for examples, feature fitness centers that resemble most full-service health clubs you find on land. But even the most basic cruise ship gym is outfitted with enough equipment to get in a great workout. You also can find cruise ship jogging tracks or nice wide promenade decks where you can go for a daily run or enjoy vigorous walks in the fresh air.
Make it a daily ritual to get in 30 minutes or more at the gym and you will earn your extra cocktails or daily desserts.
Use the Stairs
It has been a longstanding policy of mine to avoid the elevators on a cruise ship. Sure, by the end of a busy day or a full week of cruising, my legs and feet might prefer a break. But I figure the fitness benefits I accrue from simply walking up and down the stairs throughout my voyage are worth it.
Taking the stairs as much as possible is a fairly easy way to bank credit for those extra calories. Cruises also offer a few other ways to stay active while having fun. You can head to the disco and hit the dance floor each night and book shore excursions that keep you on the move, such as snorkeling, hiking or biking outings.
This all pays off when you can treat yourself to that buttery lobster, juicy steak and extra sides.
You can game the system. Try a pre-cruise diet to drop a few pounds before you set sail. This way, you can eat your way back to your normal weight during your cruise. I’ve used this strategy several times to drop up to 10 pounds before my voyage. Then, you can really enjoy big meals, poolside beers, fruity drinks and late-night snacks.
If you combine a strategy of shedding some weight before your trip alongside daily workouts and staying active while onboard, you’ll easily stick to your weight-maintenance goals on the cruise.
Watch those Portions
A little willpower goes a long way. You can still enjoy a little bit of everything, but you don’t have to overdo it. Try portion control. Don’t heap on the servings while at the buffet. Instead, take enough to get a satisfying taste of the dishes you like. Don’t stuff yourself. Stick to one soft-serve cone a day, one slice of pizza and a few beers instead of eight or nine.
You don’t have to deny yourself if you can take a more measured approach to your indulgences.
Pick the Good Stuff
If you have a penchant for wellness and really pursue a healthy lifestyle, you might think a cruise will sabotage your fitness. The good news for you: A cruise vacation has plenty to offer a fitness fanatic, as well. As we’ve outlined, there are plenty of opportunities to stick to your daily workout regimen with full-fledged gyms and other opportunities to stay active.
Health nuts can also stick to their diets and avoid weight gain by choosing from the specially marked items on the menus. Both the main dining rooms and specialty restaurants on cruise ships feature a selection of lower-calorie or healthy meal options clearly marked on the menus.
Also, if you want something special to fit your dietary needs or restrictions, all you have to do is ask. The chefs are very accommodating and will craft a meal that makes you happy and meets your goals.
Plus, the buffet is a good place to pick and choose items that fit into your diet, as well, with lean proteins available in chicken and fish options and plenty of healthy fruits and vegetables always on offer.
Brought to you by Cruise Compete. CruiseCompete.com allows you to easily compare multiple offers from Cruise Experts