Tips for Keeping Those Pesky Pounds Off on a Cruise

December 2009


Ok we’ve all heard the horror stories, people bellying up to the endless buffets on cruises, the temptation to snack constantly and the ensuing agony of gaining lots of weight while vacationing on a cruise ship. Well, it doesn’t have to be that way girls. You can go, have a great time, and without too much effort keep those pesky pounds off.

My sister and I took my mother on an Eastern Caribbean Princess cruise for her birthday and none of us gained weight. In fact both my sister and I lost weight during the week we were away. Did we deprive ourselves, starve ourselves, and spend all day at the fitness center? Nope. We just followed a few easy steps that really didn’t require too much time or effort, honest! So women, don’t worry, be happy and check out my Cruise Rules for Weight Loss.

1. Walk the Decks My Maties

shipdeck_200This was one of my favorite daytime activities. I don’t know why, but there’s something about the ocean waves and the endless expanse of water and sky that just speaks to me. I found that walking for a half hour was just enough to recharge my batteries and get in some quiet time away from the maddening crowds. Ok the ship really wasn’t that crowded and I found that, in particular, the decks away from the pool areas were usually very quiet, perfect for a nice walkies. I loved it!

2. Snub the Elevators

Today’s modern cruise liners are big! They have multiple (10, 15, 20?) decks and to be honest there weren’t enough elevators for the amount of passengers onboard, resulting in some long wait times during busy times of the day. On the first day of our cruise, after waiting 15 minutes for an elevator we decided to ditch them for the rest of the trip and use the stairs. It turned out to be fun, we found that we were bumping into the same people each day in the stairwells who had also decided to do the stair thing. We all kinda formed our own little “Stair Gang” hanging out chatting and laughing on our way to various decks.

3. One treat per day

strawb_200You’re on holiday, so you gotta enjoy yourself right? Plan to treat yourself to one really special dessert, dinner or snack each day. Remember I said one not all three.

4. Don’t drink the “Kool-Aid”

The first thing you probably will see as you board on the ship is a huge line in front of the Coke Card Table. Walk past, avert your eyes and DO NOT buy this card. Remember Soda Pop is an Evil Brew! Yeah, even the diet stuff. A lot of studies are now showing the drinking diet soda may actually set you up to gain even more weight. Drink water and plenty of it, pack a water bottle in your suitcase and ask for plain water in a glass when dining out (you’ll feel better and you’ll be doing your part to reduce the amount of plastics that end up in the landfill.)

5. Find the Fitness Center

Fitness Centers on most ships are usually very well equipped and they offer a variety of classes for all fitness levels.

During our cruise we would try to start our day by heading to the fitness center first thing and then reward ourselves afterwards with a lovely breakfast. I find that if you put it off until later in the day, you end up not going at all!

If you go on the Caribbean Princess cruise ship watch out for the fitness instructor who teaches the abs and butt class – he is a mean machine! Both my sister and I took the class and almost died – he warned us before the class that it was a hard class and any one that didn’t think they could “take it” should leave. We should have listened but we both thought nahhhhh how hard could it be?? It was hell; I still wince thinking about the next day and how I almost couldn’t get out of bed because my stomach muscles were on fire. We saw him a couple times walking on the deck and hid so he wouldn’t see us, in case he made us do 5 more, 4 more, 3 more 2 more…!!

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