She’s helped Jennifer Aniston keep her enviable shape. Now Mandy Ingber, yoga teacher to the stars, can help you — she’s just asking for 28 days. In her new book, Yogalosophy, Ingber — whose other celebrity clients have included Helen Hunt, Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Beckinsale — walks readers through a day-by-day journey toward greater health, fitness and overall wellness and renewal.
But what happens if you’ll be traveling over the next 28 days? Few things can put a crimp in a traveler’s fitness-training style quite like a hectic travel schedule, especially over the long Memorial Day weekend. Don’t worry, says Ingber — she’s been there, too.
Recently, Ingber sat down with TravelChannel.com to offer her tips on staying fit while on the road … or in the air. Ever wondered what you can eat (guilt-free) between flights at an airport? Or what exercises you can easily do in your hotel room? Read on for Ingber’s tips.
Travel Channel: Tell us about your book – what motivated you to write it.
Mandy Ingber: Everyone knows to eat cleanly and exercise daily, but it’s the daily motivation that can be a challenge. This is like a companion. I wanted to give people a handbook that they could use over and over again, choosing what worked best in the moment. It’s the motivation that I share with my students and I wanted to put it out there. So it’s a daily reader.
Travel Channel: What are the top ways that someone can commit to fitness while traveling?
Mandy Ingber: I travel a lot myself. It’s important while traveling to stay grounded. I recommend bringing tennis shoes and workout clothes. Prioritize it. Make time in your day that is dedicated to you. (An hour is sufficient. If you don’t have an hour, then 30 minutes.) One thing that I do when I land in a city is a take an hour-long walk. It helps to get the feel of where I am, and it’s great for my body. I never feel I’ve arrived until I have walked that radius.
Travel Channel: What do you eat while traveling?
Mandy Ingber: I always take a few snacks in my bag. Something like a bag of almonds or a bar like KIND, which you can pick up in Starbucks — something that travels well and doesn’t stink up your bag! For meals I try to stick to salads and a good piece of fish. It’s important to select the healthiest and freshest foods available. And stay away from the bread! We all know this, but travel is very dehydrating. Drink 2 to 3 liters of water. Also coconut water is everywhere now and replenishes the body. I like to get a few bags of kale chips and coconut water. Plenty of fresh veggies and fruits, precut. Yogurt when I’m eating dairy. Those are my snacking staples.
Travel Channel: In addition to your yoga mat, what are your must-bring items for a trip?
Mandy Ingber: Gym clothes, tennis shoes, a few bars just in case I need a snack. (I like KIND because you can actually see that it is food. Combinations of almonds and nuts, so nothing too processed. Salty dark chocolate with nuts. My fave for a treat). If you have anything you love, like workout bands, a DVD you think is great, or a jump rope, bring it!
Travel Channel: Is a hotel gym necessary for staying committed to fitness while traveling?
Mandy Ingber: I always check out the hotel gym and spa. It’s the first thing I look at when I find a hotel. It really helps me to stay on track. However, many hotels have yoga on-demand in the hotel rooms, and you can totally find plenty of yoga online now. So if you have a computer and space, you are pretty much set in your room.
Travel Channel: What are some good online yoga resources for travelers?
Mandy Ingber: POPSUGAR Fitness, Livestrong, My Yoga Online. These are all resources for workouts you can do yourself. I have also seen people working with downloads on their tablets in the gym. Most of us have downloadables you can purchase. Or there’s plenty of free stuff, too. If all else fails, a brisk hour-long walk or a sauna dip will do the trick.
Travel Channel: What hotels do you think offer a great mix of fitness and wellness?
Mandy Ingber: I hear the Viceroy has some great programs and the Four Seasons. I am actually doing a yoga/spa weekend with the Mandarin Oriental in Miami.
Travel Channel: How do you maintain your fitness with such a busy schedule?
Mandy Ingber: I have always been dedicated to my fitness routine. I make time for myself daily to meditate (if only for 15 minutes), move my body (for at least 30 minutes) in one way or another, and relax in a sauna or by taking a stroll … or watching a sunset or having a cup of tea. This is really a baseline for me. I have so much more to offer when I take time for me.
Travel Channel: What travel destinations immediately put you at ease?
Mandy Ingber: Beach, hands down. I love Hawaii … Cabo … the Bahamas. I am a sun worshipper.
Travel Channel: Travel can be stressful, especially with more airport delays – any tips to stay centered?
Mandy Ingber: Pack light. Bring a color palate. Splurge on the Gogo inflight internet. It’s a great time to catch up on emails and online work. Bring a great book. Preferably spiritual. Something that inspires you. Stretch regularly.
Travel Channel: What are some airports you think have good healthy food options?
Mandy Ingber: I really don’t eat in airports that much. I will tell you what I love, though, especially when traveling long distances: the massage stops! That is the most genius thing. When I was traveling from Ibiza to Los Angeles, and to Provence, I splurged, and it was truly the best find. I think that’s a better use of your money. Water, KIND bars and massage stops.
Travel Channel: What are some top yoga retreats you’d recommend for travelers?
Mandy Ingber: What I truly love for the yoga novice who wants a retreat but doesn’t know where to start is Wanderlust Festival. It’s so much fun. I went this past winter to Hawaii and loved it. There is something for everyone, and such a variety. You can move from a stretchy yin yoga class to a vigorous flow to surf yoga class, then at night it’s a music festival. Your partner can go golfing or surfing if they’re not into yoga. It is a really fun time.
Travel Channel: I heard you recently went to Wanderlust – with the beautiful beach, was it hard to sit and simply meditate?
Mandy Ingber: No, it was awesome for meditating! I did it every day. I got up as the sun was rising and I walked right down to the beach and found a little spot to do my morning meditation. It was so easy to feel grateful being surrounded by such nature. Meditation on a view can be extremely powerful. The ocean has a rhythm and a breath. The power brings me right into the present. No need to block that out. Invite it in!
Travel Channel: Has any celebrity you’ve worked with given you a great fitness tip that you now incorporate into your travels?
Mandy Ingber: I traveled with Kate Beckinsale to Provence for holiday and to Madrid, Berlin and London during a press tour. I think the main thing is to be consistent with your self-care. Part of what allows you to have fun, relax or do your work is staying in some sort of fitness routine. Some of my students Skype with me from their trips as well. So I would say stay committed. What else?
Travel Channel: For travelers embarking on their next great adventure this summer, any final words?
Mandy Ingber: Have fun! Find a little routine that is just yours for self-care. Be present to where you are. Be immersed. Eat the food of the culture. Meet the people.
You May Also Like:
Check out Ingber’s picks for the best places for outdoor yoga.
Get your downward dog on at Wanderlust Yoga and Music Festival.
Improve your inner and outer self at these wellness and beauty retreats.