How to Travel Fit (in Hawaii)

I was very concerned about breaking my routine. Hawaii was my first big travel adventure since starting my fitness journey. A routine helps me stay on track with eating habits and regularly exercise. However, with travel comes an exciting new adventure filled with places to explore, foods to try, and people to meet--a more than worthy experience than stressing about calorie counting.

With research and preparation, I managed to stay on top of my fitness and wellness lifestyle. I firmly believe in enjoying vacation to it's absolute fullest. I never suggest restricting any foods from your diet. Instead, let's eat in a thoughtful way; essentially, 80% nutrient rich foods and 20% fun foods! As for exercise, there are so many ways to do so without going to the gym, especially on vacation. While walking (e.g. cardio) was very common, it was surprisingly easy to incorporate strength training to my vacation, too.

The following is my how-to guide to staying fit while traveling in Hawaii.

1. Research


I love stuffing my face with food! If only you could picture my drool. There are some foods that are so good, they're almost orgasmic. When I think of Hawaii, I have visions of Mai Tais, kalua pork, and shrimp. I was able to get some great recommendations from friends and also used Yelp and TripAdvisor. During my first visit to Hawaii in 2012, it was difficult to find healthy food in Waikiki. Now, it's relatively easy to find health food stores and eateries.

In Oahu, I suggest taking advantage of the fresh fruit, smoothies, acai bowls, kalua pork with cabbage, and grilled shrimp. Try to the loco moco and masaladas in moderation!


Hikes are a great way to explore natural wonders, while getting great exercise. I did three hikes: Manoa Falls trail, Koko Head trail, and Radio Tower at Hanuama Bay trail.


You can't get more island than swimming. I swam the Waikiki Public Beach and Hanuama Bay.

Local Fitness

I used ClassPass, MindyBody, and Instagram to look up local fitness studios. Once I found a studio, I went on their website to find any deals or discounts. I visited Sweat & Soul Barre Studio and Pilates O Ka La where I got great strength training workouts. I also used my hotel gym one morning, which was pretty nice.

2. Packing

I looked up the weather two different times. First, I researched the general conditions of the season, and second, I looked up the weather a couple days before travel for the exact temperature.

Since Hawaii is a warm and humid climate, it was very easy to pack. I recommend packing as light as possible. Reuse clothes, such as sports bras and leggings.

Packing List

  • Workout leggings

  • Travel leggings. My favorite travel leggings are Athleta's high-waisted traverse tights. They are thicker than regular tights for warmth on the airplane and have pockets!

  • Sports bra

  • Athletic socks

  • Grip socks for barre and pilates

  • Dry shampoo

  • Travel size hair bursh

  • Bathing suit

  • Baseball cap. I prefer baseball caps because they are adjustable, durable, and easy to store.

  • Sunglasses

  • Sunblock

  • Hiking shoes

  • Day to night sandals

  • Flip Flops

  • Vitamins and supplements. It's pretty easy to keep up with your daily multi-vitamin or any other supplements while traveling. For gummies, snack pouches are great. For any pills, it's best to keep them in the container for TSA to review if necessary.

3. Plane Ready

Remember to be thoughtful about your carry-on. Of course, remember the essentials like your wallet, necessary ID cards, and keys. Other handy items include chargers, empty water bottle, protein snacks, electrolyte packets, eye mask, massage ball and toiletries. These items will help you keep entertained and refreshed for your adventures ahead.

4. Transportation

When travel to a new place, I try to take the same form of transportation as the locals. In Oahu, I familiarized myself with the public transit system.


In Oahu, you can by a 1-day pass for $5.50 at local convenience stores, such as ABC Market or on the bus itself

Moped or bike

I really wish I had discovered moped rentals sooner! Moped and bike rentals are very affordable. I rented a moped with a helmet and insurance included for about $60 for a whole day. Parking was relatively easy. Since moped theft is common in Oahu, it's common practice to lock it to a bike rack or street pole.

Rental car

Rental cars are probably the most convenient way to get around Oahu, but it is the most expensive, too.


Booking a tour is probably the easy way to travel around the island, while also learning about its history. I highly recommend Oahu Nature Tours, which I used to visit the North Shore and hike Manoa Falls.

5. Recover

Recover upon arrival if needed. It's better to get it out of the way, so you can optimize the rest of your time.

6. Hydrate

No matter where you travel, you need to hydrate. Bring packets of electrolytes, such as BCAAs (a common workout supplement) or immunity effervescents like Airborne. Dehydration is very common when you are constantly moving from place to place. Water is not enough. Electrolytes help retain the hydration.

Diamond Head at Sunrise

6. Wake up early

One of the best features of Hawaii are the sunrises. Since I slept early my first night to recover from jetlag, I woke up the next morning to watch the sunrise.

7. Have fun!

Having fun is the most important activity you can do! Not only does stress-relief decreases cortisol production, the hormone that causes fat in you mid-section, vacation should be enjoyable. This is a time dedicated to you! Base your decisions on your overall happiness. Vacation is the time to indulge yourself!

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