Just because you’re taking a vacation from work doesn’t mean you have to take a break from your health and fitness goals—especially if you’re taking a road trip. Whether you’re traveling across the country or just a few hours out of town, I’ve put together the perfect workout to help you stretch your legs and burn some serious calories along the way. So pack your bags, grab your sneakers, and throw on a pair of leggings (… as if you didn’t already have them on).
Stop 1: When you’ve only been driving for five minutes but already need coffee ASAP.
Hitting the road early in the morning typically requires a coffee to wake you up and get you moving. But before you head in for your caffeine fix, try a few of these rear-enders for a cardio burst that will help wake up your body.
Keep your chest lifted and core tight as you lift your knees high to tap your toe on the bumper of your car. Move quickly and aim for three sets of 20 reps, alternating legs.
Stop 2: When you’re filling up and need to distract yourself from gas prices.
Ugh—the struggle is real. To avoid thinking about the $$$ pouring into your car, grab your suitcase and focus on your booty, legs, and lower belly instead.
Bring feet wider than hip distance, grabbing your bag in both hands and placing between your legs. Take a slight bend in your knees as you push your booty back. Drive through your heels, squeezing your glutes forward, and allow the bag to rise to about shoulder height—just like a kettlebell swing! Try three sets of 15 reps.
If you’re on the shorter side, your bag might be a little difficult to swing between your legs. Try doing the same reps with a deadlift instead.
Stop 3: When hanger strikes.
On a long drive, trail mix and water just isn’t going to cut it. But before you pull into a drive-thru, think twice—look for places with healthyish options made from real ingredients. And before you dine, why not take the opportunity to hit the bumper and push it (real good)?
Place your hands about shoulder distance apart and step your feet back into an elevated plank. Bend your elbows to 90 degrees as you lower your chest. Exhale as you press away from the car and repeat. Shoot for three sets of 15, as long as your form feels strong.
Stop 4: When you realize your windshield is now a bug graveyard (RIP, little friends).
You can’t roll into your vacay destination with that mess on your windshield, so when you stop to clean it up, try these reverse leg lifts. Your butt will thank you after all those hours on the road.
Windshield Wiper Reverse Leg Lifts
Take a slight bend in your standing leg as you reach forward with the squeegee. Lift the opposite leg up behind you, squeezing to engage your glutes. Try three sets of 15 on each leg.
Stop 5: When your friend swore she didn’t have to pee at the last stop but somehow is going to die 15 minutes later.
Parking Lot Sprints
Find a safe, open space and set a distance that is about six cars in length. Sprint down and back five times to get a little HIIT action in and boost your metabolism!
Short on space? Try 20 of these tire taps instead! The combination of a plyometric leap and curtsey lunge will work those glutes and quads, and get your heart rate up.
No Pit Stop Necessary
Think of a bicycle crunch but seated. Bicycle crunches are my favorite abs exercise because they work the entire abdominal wall from top to bottom (talk about burning off those road snacks).
Obviously, you don’t want to do these if you’re driving, so switch off along the way to make sure you get your set in too! Aim for 50 double-count crunches every five minutes—or every hour if you’ve got a long journey ahead.
You can easily do these moves all at once or split them up throughout your trip. Either way, if you complete all three sets of each move, you can expect to burn about 200 calories. Not too bad for being in a car all day, right?
Katie Dunlop is the creator of Love Sweat Fitness. Katie turned her personal fitness journey into a brand and supportive community with over 500K+ members and over 13M+ YouTube views. As a NASM certified trainer, Katie created the Hot Body Guides using the same formula she used herself to lose over 45+ lbs. Most recently, she created the Guiltless Nutrition Lifestyle & Recipe Book as a way to continue to share her tips to stay fit and still have fun with her Team LSF babes.