It can be challenging to maintain healthy habits on vacation. But one way to do so is by assembling your own travel kit of wellness essentials, which is what Los Angeles-based yogi Melissa Eckman, AKA @MelisFit_, does when she’s on the road—there are 16 things she never leaves home without.
In addition to BYO-ing her own beauty products, supplements, and activewear, she does fitness-related research on her destination before boarding a flight. “I look at what studios, gyms, healthy cafes, etc. will be near where I’m staying before I get there,” she says. “This allows me to sign up for classes and make a plan to stay on track and do the workouts I love, like Barry’s Bootcamp or Pure Barre.”
Since it’s not always possible to find a familiar studio in strange cities, Eckman makes sure to prepare a plan B. “Find an online workout you love,” she advises. “I have a membership to Bulldog Yoga online, and it’s my virtual yoga studio. No mat with you? Use a towel. Need a block? Use your water bottle. You can turn your hotel room into your own yoga sanctuary!” As the future of fitness becomes more digital, there’s an ever-growing number of options to choose from for live-streaming, anywhere workouts.
Her final tip for staying fit is one you can adopt even if you (gasp!) left your laptop behind. “Walk to explore,” she says. “I walk more on vacation than I do at home—it’s a great way to experience the city you’re visiting, feel like a local, and work off a big meal.”
Below, dig into Eckman’s carry-on for a closer look at how she stays healthy both in-flight and at her final destination.
Beauty and health products
Moisturizing sheet masks: I’ll sometimes use a moisturizing mask or under-eye patch while on the plane to keep moisture locked in.
Saline nasal spray: Being able to rinse out your sinuses every couple of hours on a flight can keep you from getting sick!
Clean soaps: I have to travel with my Raw Sugar body products—they’re vegan, sulfate and paraben-free—because I don’t like using harsh hotel soaps. I always shower and wash my hair after a flight when I get to where I’m staying.
All-natural shampoo: I also have to travel with my Phylia De M. shampoo, conditioner, and reconnect spray. This line is my best-kept secret for thick, long, and healthy hair. It’s all natural, and I’ve been using it for over five years.
Layers for the plane: I’m a comfort-first person and my go-to airport outfit is leggings with a cute sweatshirt. I have a few of these amazing Cotton On Ferguson sweatshirts because they’re so soft, under $30 dollars, and have cute sayings on them, which make them a little more elevated than your typical sweatshirt!
Earbuds: Headphones are super important to me—I need them to work out! I travel with the Beats by Dre wireless earbud headphones. I’m not a fan of bulky headphones and I find the bigger headphones are hard to pack.
A personal minibar: My fiancé laughs at me because I always travel with healthy snacks and make my own minibar in the hotel room. I never want to be hungry on vacation and resort to unhealthy options. I love keeping raw almonds, Luna bars (which have just five ingredients and are so delicious), and Skinny Pop on hand at all times!
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