Fitness on the Road, Part 2: What You Can Do Anytime, Anywhere

Jumping jacks provide a good warm-up.
Members of the 90th Security Group do jumping jacks on March 29, 2013, as a warmup prior to their command run on F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming. (R.J. Oriez/U.S. Air Force photo)

In my first column about how to stay in shape while you're traveling, I covered 10 moves that can be done anytime, anywhere. Now, the rest of the routine for a full hour of this cardio-sculpt, no-equipment, travel workout: Print this out, stuff it in your suitcase and you'll be ready.

Following steps 1-10, jump into a lunge position:

11. Alternate forward lunges, landing heel, then toe. Be sure to step far enough away that your front knee does not pass the toes. The knee should stay directly above the ankle. Right and left equals one repetition. Do 12 front lunges, then 12 alternating back lunges for the quads and glutes.

12. Cardio interval. Jump rope (pretend to hold the rope and swing it for extra biceps work) for one minute or count to 100. Alternate from one leg at a time to feet together and hopping. Maybe hop twice on one leg at a time. Have fun with it. For all cardio intervals in this workout, march in place for at least 20 seconds after to get your heart rate back down to a comfortable level.

13. Plank push-ups. Get back into a plank position and alternate a full push-up with a 10-second, right side plank and another push-up with a left side plank. That equals one repetition. Do 10 of these (20 push-ups in all).

14. Cardio. Stand up and do 20 jumping jacks with the right foot in front, 20 with the left foot in front and 20 alternating and crossing feet.

15. Glute raises. Lie on your back with feet flat on the floor and knees bent. Lift hips up and squeeze the glutes while pressing through your heels. Lower hips back to the floor for one repetition. This is called a bridge. To make this a more intense workout, lift the right leg to the ceiling and keep it there, pushing off the ground with left foot to lift hips up and down for the first 30 reps, and then switch legs.

16. Jump rope for a minute again, using different leg combinations.

17. External oblique side crunches. Lie on your back with shoulders flat on the floor and hands behind the head. Bend your knees and drop them off to the right side. Move the knees up to hip level, so the body forms the letter "L" from knees to hips to head. Crunch the chest to the ceiling for 40 each side. Repeat on the left. The more intense version of this is to extend your right arm out from the shoulder and lift both knees off the floor as you lift up onto your elbow. 

18. Jumping jack cardio interval for 1-2 minutes.

19. Internal obliques. Lie on your back again and put your hands behind your head for support. Bend your knees and put your feet flat on the floor. Focus on lifting the right shoulder, not the elbow (we want to keep the chin lifted and neck long while looking at the ceiling) to the left knee. Bring the left knee in toward the right shoulder at the same time. Release back to the floor for one rep. Do 30 on the same side and then switch to the other elbow and knee combo for another set. A more challenging version of this is to extend both legs and lift one to the ceiling and lower the other toward the floor in a scissor motion. As you lift the right leg to the ceiling, reach the right arm toward your left toes (pictured), repeat on the other side and do 20 alternating scissor crunches.

20. Do a cardio interval again with one minute of jumping rope. (For different and more intense cardio intervals, visit for demos. You'll find them on the 30-minute Military Wife Workout DVD. It's convenient to play on a laptop or in your guest room, and you can buy weights that fill with water and then empty for light packing.)

21. Upper and lower back. We worked the abdominals quite a bit, so now it's time to work the opposing muscles in the back. Lie face down with arms long and extended out at shoulder level, forming a "T" with your body. Lift the head, chest, shoulders, hands, legs and feet off the floor. Lower down and repeat the move 20 times.

22. Final cardio interval of jacks and jogging for two minutes.

23. Do a five-minute cooldown with the same moves in the warmup.

24. Stretch (see home page for a quick and free stretch video) hamstrings, calves, quadriceps, hip flexors, inner and outer thighs, glutes, triceps, pectorals, trapezius and rhomboids (upper back), and lower back with standing rolls or cat/cow.

25. Remember to hydrate during and after your workout, and leave these columns in your travel bag for your next fit trip.

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Nikki Fitness is a personal trainer, group exercise instructor, writer and publicist living in New York City. She started as a cheerleader at Syracuse University, but became certified in fitness before her beach wedding so that she could get back in shape. Laura, a graduate student, working mom and military wife, inspired Nikki's Military Wife Workout (MWW) for all military wives. Find more articles by Nikki at her article archive. Learn more at

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