rick staying fit by running on a cruise ship
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How To Stay Fit on a Cruise – My Top 10 Secrets

Are you wondering how to stay fit on a cruise ship?  Its no wonder that returning home from a cruise often brings great memories, and few extra pounds.  Gaining a little weight is especially common for first-time cruisers.   For example, I remember my first Princess cruise to Alaska, walking by those beautiful desserts- it is hard to resist!  These are our tips that’ll help you stay fit and avoid putting on too much weight while on the cruise ship.

Stay Fit And Have a Healthy Breakfast On Your Cruise

Our favorite way to have breakfast is having it in our room.  By eating breakfast in our room, we only eat what we order, avoiding all temptations.  For example, we might order a bowl of cereal and fresh fruit.  Also, it’s a great way to start your day.   By contrast, breakfast in the main dining room or at the buffet is awesome, but it’s near impossible to pass on those extra pastries.   For this reason, it will help you stay fit by simply having breakfast in your cabin.  Naturally, there are exceptions.  For instance, we go for breakfast in the main dining when we’re in port and plan to explore the city all day –  and then we skip lunch.

Walk to/from your Cruise Ship on Port Days and Stay Fit

We all go on a cruise to enjoy the beautiful ports of call, so why not try to walk around the port/city and stay fit doing so?  Plus, exploring a city on foot is fun!   For example, you’ll have more opportunities for photo taking while walking, than on a bus or in a car.  Surely, if a port of call is a beach destination,  you might go for a walk on the beach or a swim in the ocean, that will burn calories too.

On our most recent Alaska cruise, we had a wonderful excursion that involved rowing in a canoe, then HIKE to the glacier.  It was amazing!

Cruise Ship Meal Planning for Lunch and Dinner

On sea days we usually have lunch at the buffet and we choose a lean protein (chicken, pork, turkey) and lots of vegetables. Try to keep the carbs to the minimum.  Speaking of which, we don’t eat any dry bread on board.

For dinner at the main dining room, we limit our meal to two courses either an appetizer and a main course, or the main course and a dessert.  Ask your waiter to take the bread away…. I know it is delicious (really, really delicious) but you will pay for it on the scale! Especially after cruising for a week+ ?

Deserts are ohh so good, but keep them to a minimum

Taking the Stairs on the Cruise will Keep You Fit

Taking the stairs on the cruise ship serves two purposes. First, you will burn extra calories. And second, you’ll avoid the long wait for the elevators.

Go for a Run or a Brisk Walk Around the Ship

Do this at least twice a day. It’s a good way to burn some calories, get some steps and interact with other fellow passengers.  We’ve even seen our captain do this several times (incognito of course), if he does why not us!

Running is a fabulous way to stay to stay fit on a cruise - but maybe not in flip flops

Keep Alcohol Consumption Low

I know it is your vacation and you want to have fun but most of the cocktails on-board are full of sugar and drinking several of those a day is an equivalent of eating a cake – every single day! I recommend sticking with beer and wine.  For example, 3-4 glasses a day are perfect.  Also, another problem with alcohol is that it clouds your judgment.  Then, when you’re a little foggy, it is even easier to have that extra slice of pie!

Go Dancing On The Cruise Ship

There is no lack of party and dancing opportunities on-board.  You may start with Cruise Ship Zumba in the morning, then attend the afternoon and evening parties to keep fit and active!

Dance Party on a Cruise is a perfect way to stay fit

Watch the Movie From In The Pool

On sea days, it is nice to watch the afternoon movie by the pool.  But, why not watch it from the pool?  Surely, you will stay fit by moving around the cruise ship’s pools!  Treading water is a great way to keep yourself active!  Or, even if you’re using a floatie, you’ll still burn more calories!

Swimming is a great way to stay fit on a cruise

Afternoon Tea

I know the 4 pm afternoon tea in the main dining room is such a great experience but most of the time it turns into the 4th meal of the day. If you’re planning on doing the afternoon tea just skip lunch, or just have fruit for lunch.

Stay Fit By Using the Gym On Your Cruise

The gym is not just for the raffle at the beginning of the cruise as the machines are there to be used to keep you fit and healthy.  If you want to keep fit and indulge in that extra snack, go to the gym for an hour and you’ll be better off on your cruise.

At the end of the day, we go on a cruise to have loads of fun and if you follow some of these suggestions we’re sure you’ll have a guilt-free vacation. Enjoy

Andrea & Rick

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