Friday, April 6, 2012

The Cruise Diaries--Fun And Fitness

Last month I went on a cruise and didn't gain a single pound! Part of that was due to the food choices I made, but if you've ever tried to manage your weight you know there are two parts to the equation: the food you eat and the exercise you do.  For a week I ate more than I'm used to, but I also upped my physical activity, and that made all the difference.

I think the most significant thing Hubby Tony and I did was take the stairs (instead of the elevator) whenever possible. Our ship, the Voyager of the Seas, was huge.  It had 15 decks.  Some of the important locations:

  • Our room, which was on Deck 9.  
  • The Promenade area, which was on Deck 5 
  • The pool/solarium area and Windjammer Cafe, which were on Deck 11 
  • Our dining room, which was on Deck 4.   

We were always on the move!  Occasionally if we had several flights to climb and there wasn't a line for the elevator we'd jump in, but even with banks of elevators at the front and back of the ship, there was usually a long wait to board.  It was faster to walk.  Going down several flights of steps is easy to do, but going UP is a pretty good aerobic workout.

In addition to walking, we tried to mix up our activity over the course of the week. The ship had a full fitness center.  When we went on our last cruise in 2000, that ship may have had a place to exercise.  I didn't check; I wan't in the habit of going to the gym back then.  Now I try to make time for exercise, so on the first day of the cruise Tony and I took a tour of the center.  It had all the things I was used to seeing at my regular gym-treadmills, elliptical machines, weight machines, and free weights.  There were also classes you could sign up for, but they weren't free.

Even though I didn't get to the gym itself as much as I'd originally planned,  I enjoyed my sessions on the treadmill.  They were lined up facing the ocean against floor-to-ceiling windows.  Walking on the treadmill isn't so bad when you have a wonderful view of the sea. However, when the ship's in rough water the treadmill became quite interesting. When it rocked in a port/starboard (left/right) movement, it felt like you were going uphill or downhill despite what the treadmill's readout said.

The ship also had other ways to keep active.  We never made it to the sports court, inline skating track, or miniature golf course, but I tried climbing the rock wall (where sadly, I  only got halfway up before my gimpy shoulder started complaining and I had to come down).  I ice skated, and was pleasantly surprised that after a few shaky laps on the small rink I got the hang of it.  Tony and I took a line dancing class in one of the clubs, and one night, after we indulged in the late night poolside buffet, we went up one level to the walking track and did a few laps in the moonlight before bed.


  1. Good for you! I always think I'm going to exercise on vacation, but I never do.

  2. How fun! Walking while looking at the ocean...can't think of anything better!