When it comes to health and wellness, even those of us dedicated to eating and living well can sometimes through caution to the wind when it comes to traveling. Airports are notorious for offering a slew of unhealthy options and plane food is hardly going to win any healthy living awards. So even from the start of the vacation, we can let go of our diet regimes and start living large on pizza, fries and the like. And while indulging once in a while is okay, if you begin your vacation with this kind of binge you are likely to continue on when you arrive at your destination.

Vacations are of course meant to be relaxing. We go away to get away from our everyday routines and this often includes our strictly regulated or rigid diet and exercise regimes. It’s nice to let go once and a while and when we go away we often look forward to lounging on the beach drinking margaritas.
The problem of course is that these margaritas and fancy restaurant meals can pack on unwanted pounds. Matched with very little in the way of exercise, you can return perhaps relaxed but also a little bigger around the belly.
In general there is nothing wrong with a few extra pounds that will come off once you’re back to your old regime. Perhaps this is what vacationing is all about: letting go and letting loose. There are however other types of vacations that can be just as relaxing without also being waist and thigh enhancing. New types of travel and vacations are now available for those looking to stay in shape and even to boost their fitness levels. Below are just some of the types you can try if you are looking for a get a way without the extra poundage.
Yoga retreats: Yoga retreats are becoming increasingly popular in recent years. Previously only for the true yoga adepts, yoga retreats now cater to a wide variety and levels of practitioners. Try taking a holiday in a beautiful ecologically rich island in the Caribbean or in the Mediterranean while also increasing your strength, fitness and peace. This can be just the thing if you enjoy yoga and would also like to go someone where you’ll be guided through yoga classes every day and fed healthy nutritious rich foods.
Yoga retreats often include classes in the mornings and evenings and then free time throughout the day or access to meditation groups should you chose to take them. Some retreats have group excursions as well and free time to laze about with your yoga fit body in the sun.

Most often these retreats are located in a peaceful and heavenly atmosphere. It is no doubt true that inner peace can be more easily attained when surrounded by such natural beauty. The peaceful atmosphere will help you let go of your stress and worries from city life (if that’s where you live) and let you sink into an important new level of awareness.

This is of course only if inner peace and quiet is what you’re looking for. Yoga retreats may not be for everyone. There are nevertheless other options for keeping your body fit without having to endure quiet meditation.

If you are looking for a healthy vacation, but are not interested in doing hundreds of downward dogs to achieve it, you may instead want to try an adventure vacation. Adventure travel encompasses a range of activities. These may include traveling across the Netherlands on bike or whitewater rafting through beautiful British Columbia. There is something for everyone. What adventure vacations and travel refers to though is that you and your body will be challenged in some way beyond raising your hand to the bartender for another glass of wine.

Bike trips are a fairly popular way to go for not only are they great for getting or staying in shape and for seeing the beautiful countryside close up, but they are also an ecologically friendly way to travel (assuming you’re offsetting any carbon emissions from your eight hour flight). Biking even across a closer destination might introduce you to sights you’ve never seen before.

The best thing about a biking vacation however is that once you’ve got the right gear this is a highly affordable way to travel. No car rentals or expensive train rides. Just you and your own force taking you across the landscape. If you’re looking for something challenging but not overly exhausting or if you like to be able to take it at your own pace, then choosing a bike vacation is a great idea.
Of course, some people won’t be satisfied until they’ve pushed their bodies to the limits. If you are looking for a really extreme challenge then there are other types of adventure vacations for you. Some of these are more like a triathlon then anything resembling traditional notions of vacations. Some adventure travels include hiking, biking, rafting, snorkeling, zip-lining and kayaking through your chosen destination.

These more jam-packed and challenging traveling adventures are most often conducted through an adventure travel company many of which can be found online. Here you’ll find a wide array of group activities that are led by an adventure expert who has experience with such travel tours. Make sure to shop around and check to see that the leader has led these kinds of tours before. You don’t want to get stuck with someone inexperienced who may or may not be qualified to lead your group of adventure novices through the Amazonian jungle! Check for recommendations or for reviews of companies before signing up for an adventure tour.

If you’re in the mood for a little less in the way of exercise but you’d still like to shed a few pounds, there are also other kinds of retreats that focus on diet rather than exercise. Although some of these used to be referred to as fat farms where celebrities would go to drink water and seaweed concoctions and come out emaciated, there are other ways to vacation in this way.

You may for instance want to try out a raw food retreat. As the raw food movement grows, there are now a variety of retreats. These are sometimes combined with spa options making this retreat even more appealing. Here you’ll be offered a slew of raw food meals (and at some places a small array of cooked vegetarian meals) to help introduce you to the raw food lifestyle. Some retreats of this kind will focus on showing you how to ‘cook’ raw food meals and prepare these options for yourself and your family. The benefits of raw food have been expounded by many experts and researchers have found that even those suffering from diabetes have been able to lower and in many cases completely get off their insulin once on a raw food diet. Of course this should only be attempted under proper medical supervision.

Whatever kind of vacation you are looking into booking be sure to keep in mind these healthier options. While you don’t have to go skydiving or kayaking through rough waters, you might opt for a simple bike tour or relaxing yoga retreat as a way to keep your waistline in tact over the course of your holiday. Not all vacations have to involve a wrinkle inducing tan and an extra ten around the waist. Who knows, you may even come back more refreshed then you would have otherwise.

Author's Bio: 

Dale Miller is a health, sports, fitness and nutrition enthusiast. He operates http://centurysupplements.com/ and writes a blog at http://centurysupplements.com/blog/