Its something I always fear…. going off the rails and loosing my routine as soon as I go into holiday or break mode. I decided to write a post about my own experience visiting Berlin recently and give an example of how to stay on track but still getting the most from your break!
To start you off here are some quick pointers to think about;
- Download apps to help you arrange activities & healthy eateries – I used Expedia.ie for my trip.
- Try to incorporate a fitness model you enjoy- cycling, running, climbing, walking.
- Exercise early – the later you leave it the harder it gets and you start to make other plans, especially if you’re traveling in groups.
- Pick a time limit, you are on holidays so there’s no need to do anything over 30-40 minutes, I usually will target 35 minutes its very do-able and over before I know it!
I decided the best way to stay active and get some site seeing in was to try out some of the various cycling tours the city has to offer, cycling being one of my favourite sports it was right up my street. Through Expedia.ie, I booked the half day cycle tour of the city and the half day cycle tour of the Berlin Wall with Fat Tire bike tours. Berlin is 8 times bigger than Paris so there is a lot of ground to cover!
The cost of the city tour is €26 per person and and if you book a second tour with Fat Tire you get €6 off. The City bike tour took just over 4 hours. We started at 4pm and we stopped off in 12 places in total on the tour. Our tour guide Tim was brilliant and full of knowledge about all the history Berlin but also present Berlin. Tim was able to tell us the best places to go to for food, views, markets and about the nightlife in Berlin.
The tour covers all major tourist attractions in the city including Charlie check point, Berlin Wall, Jewish memorial and Brandenburg Gate to name a few. Approximately 2hrs and 30 mins into the tour we stopped at the restaurant ‘Schleusen Krug’ for some food and drinks.By stopping off for food on the tour was a great way to get to meet other people and chat about the beautiful City we were in, I would highly recommend looking into cycling tours in your chosen destinations, they have them in almost every city it was the best way to see as much as possible in such a short amount of time, while keeping active!
On the City tour we covered 8.8 miles. We burned 320 calories which seems really low but none the less we got our bearings of the City in under 3 hours and saw all the main attractions.
On our second day in Berlin, we did another bike tour that guided us along the Berlin Wall – this tour was slightly longer covering 18km in total. I loved this bike tour because you cycled out to the suburbs and got a better idea of the culture and people of Berlin. I also burned 1450 calories on the tour which was nice!
The best thing about cycle tours? Your not absolutely wrecked come night time from walking all day so you still have loads of energy to make the most of the Berlin night life. The cycle tour is a nice leisurely pace so really suits all abilities although pros may get a little bored!
It’s a great alternative to walking all day or sitting on a bus tour! The tours run regardless what the weather is like but I definitely wouldn’t fancy it in the rain!
Berlin is a great City to cycle in with bike lanes everywhere – drivers are very respectful of cyclists so there wasn’t much to worry about. I enjoyed the bike tours so much I decided to rent a bike for the rest of my trip and it was so easy to get around. To rent a bike for a day is 8 euro. My one piece of advice is to watch out for the curbs on the bikes!
When I was preparing my trip to Berlin, I wrote down a HITT workout that I could do in my hotel room to keep active. I found by doing my own workouts I was able to fit them in to my day when I wanted and didn’t have to stick to a schedule. The HITT workout required no equipment and were quick so didn’t take up too much time or didn’t require much space.
The workout included;
- 20 sec high knees
- 20 sec jump squats
- 20 sec mountain climbers
- 20 sec alternating side lunges
- 60 sec rest
- repeat 8-10
Whats great about this workout is that you can adapt it to suit your fitness levels. The workout took me between 19-24mins.
If you find it hard to motivate yourself when away then try out the local gyms. During my trip I also decided to try out a nearby gym, Fitness & Friends. Most gyms offer daily passes between 7/10 euros including classes. I tried an x-fit class which was a bit advanced! My body got a bit of a shock but it was a great workout and a routine I would repeat myself in the gym.
After my trip I felt quite refreshed and felt I covered a lot in 3 days! It was great to combine site seeing with being active and my legs didn’t feel weak after loads of walking. We covered far more ground than if we walked and saw so much more than if we used public transport. Most importantly I went on an amazing city break and didn’t have to break my routine!