Because American Way (American Airline’s in-flight magazine) is featuring the House Fairy this month, I thought it’d be good to write about exercising while flying. So, Mom, want to shrink that belly fat while you’re on your way to Los Angeles? Here are 7 ways to get back into those pants that are too tight.
As an author of get-organized books, I’ve had to fly extensively, and over the years I’ve figured out some ways to get in a little fitness activity on a plane without getting kicked off it. We have to put our fellow passengers first before our exercise regimes. Having a passenger invade my space is on my list of top ten annoyances, so I’m very careful not to bother my seat partners.
Once while travelling, the woman next to me used an inflatable neck rest which obviously had a leak. While she slept, the air leaked out and her large body gradually listed into my space and finally rested on my arm and shoulder. The assertiveness-training classes I took, didn’t take and I allowed the invasion of my personal space. Soon after, she woke up from the awkward slant of her torso, blew the thing back up, and returned to dreamland, gradually tilting back over her armrest again and into my lap. This process repeated every 27 minutes (not that I was counting!) on our nonstop flight from Portland, Oregon, to New York City, New York.
We certainly don’t want to be invasive like that while we squeeze some exercise into our travels.
My goal when exercising on a flight is to keep my workout as discrete as I can. That’s part of the fun! One good way to do that is to get your moves in before takeoff. If you think how much time it takes for all those passengers to get on the plane and the chaos created as they get their stuff stowed and get seated, most of these exercises can be done after you board and before the plane taxis off to the runway, thereby sparing your flight mates any grief while you work out.
Some of my exercises are isometric and make use of your imagination.
1. The Marching Soldier
For lower-body strength: Sit in your seat and pretend that your feet weigh 20 pounds each. Discreetly lift one leg up and hold for five seconds, being careful not to disturb your fellow passenger with groans or heavy breathing (especially if you’re in a center seat). Then raise it up as high as you can without knocking into your tray table and continue holding for five more seconds. Repeat with each leg 15 times.