Fitness in Thailand…how not to get run over.


Life has brought me over here to Bangkok , Thailand for a couple weeks. Most of my travel up to this point has been in the states, so finding a place to run or workout has never been much of a problem. There is an easiness to venturing out on your own in America versus a foreign country, especially here in the land of limited open spaces. Yesterday I was mere inches from being run over by a motorcycle on the sidewalk!! Let me tell you, this is not a pedestrian friendly place.

Many of my clients travel and I have written fitness programs for travel, but to be honest writing one versus doing it was much easier. I know I could lunge around my room, pump out some air squats , plank and do pushups…but I need weights. I like the feel and forcefulness of pushing or pulling a heavy dumbbell or cable machine, the other stuff is like eating  jello when what I want is a slice of fudge cake…or drinking water when I want a glass of Chardonnay ( more accurate).

Luckily for me the hotel I am staying at has a decent fitness room with treadmills, bikes ,some dumbbells and a seriously deflated Swiss Ball. However when I asked if they had Kettlebells ( trying to shape one in the air ) I was met with a blank stare. Bit of a language barrier. It also took me 2 days to understand the treadmill wasn’t slow, it was in KMP not MPH…duh. The hotel I originally checked into had nothing, and that’s why for twice the money I am now staying at a place with fitness facilities. You can’t put a price on sanity.

There is a strange phenomena that happens when you leave your normal routine, a routine  that you depended on becomes optional. The first few days I was here I had no sense of urgency to get back on my eating and fitness program. It’s very odd because I am the person that freaks out when my fitness and nutrition is disrupted. Maybe I was just overwhelmed and over tired, a deadly combination for falling off track. Maybe I was suffering from magical thinking … a different country didn’t require the same amount of discipline because simply flying half way across the world to a time zone 11 hours ahead was like algebra…12 hours- 11 hours + 3 days = zero. Consuming calories magically didn’t matter, burning calories didn’t matter and honestly I have eaten foods here that would never have passed my lips at home. I call this the Disney effect…where fantasy replaces reality.

It happened to me , a well structured professional which was good because it’s a great reality check. You can find all kinds of helpful hints for staying fit and all sounds so reasonable . The problem is for many of us success lies in our predicatable routine, and that’s a bit of a problem…because  life is rarely that smooth. If your fitness is structured around a class, what will you do when they cancel the classes? If your fitness routine needs a gym, what will you do when it closes? If your running requires a path or treadmill what will you do when there is a blizzard ?

Everyone should have an emergency fitness and nutrition plan, especially if your traveling. It took me a few days to find a store with organics and you would have thought I found a pot of gold. I spent twice the amount of money for a hotel that had a gym and it’s priceless to me. These are things that have real life value to me. Yes, I had some not so great days here with eating Pringles potato chips straight out of a can my lowest point. Damn that stuff is so crunchy and salty, my tastebuds were saying yes, yes…YES and my mind was saying stop, stop, STOP. This is why there are some foods ( that’s not really a food, more like Crack Chips ), that you can never, ever buy.

Traveling abroad is harder than I thought…for me to be a world traveler I’m going to need a private jet, a personal chef and 5 star resorts. I guess world traveler is just not my thing..unless I win the lottery or magically become a celebrity trainer. I really love Disney.





About PT

Patricia Tremblay B.S., NSCA-CPT owner/ operator of Physiques By PT a personal training and consulting company. My focus is functional training that is compatible with your life and goals for a healthy active life, and a little fun tossed in for good measure.
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One Response to Fitness in Thailand…how not to get run over.

  1. Laurel Fortin says:

    Oh Patti …I love your posts! It really makes us stop and think ..”How lucky am I”? That’s out of my comfort zone on so many levels! Kudo’s to you, just for being there!

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