Staying fit in Tobago

People! Wuh gine on?! I am LITERALLY typing to you from seat 9A on a flight back to Barbados.

What? Yes boss! I decided to take some well-deserved down time. Where?

Tobago: my home away from home.

I visit these shores at least once per year and – at the time of writing – I’ve been informed that I’m now basically Tobagonian. Woohoo!!!

I find Tobago the perfect place to actually vacation. Why? It’s beautiful.

The people are really nice. There’s plenty outdoor-type stuff to do. And food quality is high.

While most people balk at cooking on vacation, I make a point to.

Yea. I’m a soup-from-scratch BOSS!! 😜

Further: I always opt to rent an apartment with a kitchen/kitchenette (- instead of staying in a hotel)… and I frequent the markets, stalls, and roadside vendors for produce.

Top tier!!!

But what about fitness“, you ask?

It’s SUPER easy to fall off the fitness wagon on vacation. Joe Average does not see exercise as being in alignment with rest and relaxation (- even though it really should be ). And who could blame him? It’s exercise after all. 🀣

Me, personally? I make exercise, as well as non-exercise physically-demanding activities (like walking and hiking), part of my vacation schedule. And you should too. The benefits are innumerable. Just don’t be obsessive about it, and you’ll be fine.

So… Where did I workout??

My spot!

Literally as soon as I stepped off the plane, a friend – in TRUE Tobago style – took me for a drink. And, upstairs from our watering hole there just happened to be a SWEET 24-hour gym.

Now… I’m not saying that you need to join a gym while here. Usually, I do. But I also tend to do a lot of walking, some hiking, and a lot of calisthenics. One of my favourite weight-maintenance hacks, actually, is “earning” my calories by walking to restaurants (instead of driving). This time around, however: I attended Mind & Body Fitness nearly every day.

It was within walking distance of the apartment I rented.

Horsford Apartments. Store Bay, Tobago.

$50USD got me a 2 week membership with a passkey which allowed me 24 hour access. Like I said: sweet!

What were my workouts like?

A bit insane, actually. I basically trained legs every time I went to the gym.

I know, I know: what about recovery? Honestly, I’ve always practiced a high frequency style of training. So, I continued in that vein there. Stimulating… Not annihilating.

Each workout, I stimulated a different aspect of “lower body”… Picking a different pattern and/or loading parameter each time. The rest of each workout focused on mobility and stretching… and finished off with an upper body movement. With regard to the “upper body” pattern: the focus differed from day to day. For example, on day one I did pull ups. Day 2? An overhead press. Day 3? An atypical plyometric push up. Etc.

Atypical horizontal plyometric

Would I suggest this approach to the average traveller? Hell yes. “Full body”, with a lower body and mobility emphasis will REALLY keep vacation stiffness away, whilst keeping that tummy flat, and booty PLUMP. Trust me on this. 🀣🀣 Train this way every other day, with plenty walking and outdoorsy activities in between, and you’ll be all set!

Outdoorsy stuff πŸ˜πŸ’“

“ok! I’m sold! Is there anything else you’d recommend?!”

I’m glad you asked, actually.

My Tobago-fit checklist:

  • Gym towels. (I haven’t generally seen them provided on-island. I could be wrong. But pack at least one to be on the safe side.)
  • Gym shoes. (I’m particularly partial to minimalist/barefoot shoes for gym work and hiking alike.)
  • A skipping rope. (The MOST useful thing you could possibly pop into your suitcase.)
  • A foldable yoga mat. (Most yoga mats are bulky and heavy. But a mat is a MUST HAVE when travelling. I neglected to bring one on this trip and my stretching/yoga practice suffered.)
  • Emergency medications as well as meds you take for granted (e.g. antihistamines, cough drops etc. Unless you are very mobile and have an intimate knowledge of Tobago, it’s best to walk with your meds. Me personally? I packed my nebuliser, asthma meds, antihistamines. You name it.)
  • Moisturiser and sunblock. (Tobago sun NAH EASY.)
Tobago sun NAH EASY.

Tobago! When Yuh coming?! ☺️☺️

Yours in fitness,
– Corey Springer
Apollo Fitness Barbados


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