The tropical island fitness plan: stay hydrated, snack on frozen fruit, and drink like the locals

1. Consider your mode of transportation. For instance, bike everywhere. To the beach, the resort gym, to dinner, to watch the sunset — heck, hike to the bar!  Wherever you’re going, assess your mode of transportation.  Even walking along the beach before and after dinner is an excellent way to keep your metabolism up.

2. Drink twice as much water as you normally would. On vacation, you’re bound to have a few drinks.  If you combine that with heat and humidity, it’s a first-class ticket to dehydration and if you don’t stay hydrated, your body will begin retaining water — every beach body’s worst nightmare.

3. Snack on frozen fruit. Keep frozen grapes or berries with you.  If you’re at the beach or pool and you need a snack, skip the crackers and cookies --they're full of carbs -- and pop something nutritious into your mouth -- like sliced frozen bananas, grapes, and berries.  It’s also a great trick to help treat a sugar tooth.

4.  Choose fish and veggies.  This seems like a given but it must be addressed.  Embrace the tropical culture and accept the grilled seafood. Skip the steak, burgers, potatoes, fries (really, anything fried).

5.  Become a local. Don’t be a cheesy, cliche tourist and order frozen drinks like Pina Coladas and Strawberry Daiquiris.  Better experiences come from adapting to the island culture, so order yourself a light beer with a lime.  Frozen drinks are loaded with sugar that most likely come from a mixture in a box.

6. Swim your little heart out.  If you’re near the water, use it.  Not only will you get an excellent suntan, but you'll get a great workout.  If you’re 150 pounds and you swim leisurely for about an hour, you'll burn more than 400 calories.  That’s four Corona Lights, or a scoop of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream.

Consider any or all of these tips on your vacation this summer -- enjoy and be safe!

When most people think of summertime, they think of vacations filled with sunny days. Being as I'm a Florida native, my family’s idea of a perfect vacation includes destinations that require minimal travel and a lot of sunshine — Bahamas, the Keys, and Captiva Island were always winners.

Naturally, during the winter and spring months, people around the country slim down for swimsuit season.  But more often than not, we let our bodies take a break from our diet and exercise when we go on vacation. But why should you stop your routine when swimsuit season begins?  Don’t get me wrong: I’m definitely in favor of letting your body have a gym-cation, but there are simple tips you can follow that'll prevent you from sabotaging your hard work.  The best part is, you won’t even feel like your dieting.

The Tropical Island Fitness Plan:

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