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How to Make Your Own Travel Fitness Kit

How to Make Your Own Travel Fitness Kit

Bring the things you need to stay fit on the road but small enough to fit in your carry-on.

Travelers are faced with some tough obstacles when it comes to staying in shape on the road.

Busy schedules, lousy hotel gyms and a lack of motivation are just a few of the reasons why frequent travelers find themselves overweight and unhappy due to not meeting their health and fitness goals.

The solution to this is simple: embrace bodyweight workouts that require little equipment and are both time efficient and incredibly effective.

Although training this way is perfect for travelers due to the minimal equipment required, there are still a few things worth traveling with to help you maintain your fitness on the road and keep you motivated to train.

Many travelers have "kits" for the road: small, compact and full of what you really need to bring with you.

Here's how to create your own travel fitness kit - the things you need to stay fit on the road but small enough to fit in your carry-on. 

What You Need

There are a few products currently being marketed for travel fitness - suspension trainers and resistance bands are often mentioned as great fitness tools to pack in your bag. Items like these are bulky and offer the same benefits as bodyweight exercises. When I travel, I try to pack as light as possible so I can move quickly. Bringing a suspension trainer is less than ideal and leaves even less room for clothes and shoes. We're looking for a small, compact kit filled with the small but necessary items for fitness on the road.

Here's what you need:

Travel Kit

Most travel kits are the perfect size for storing a few small fitness items - the average is about 11 inches long, 6 inches tall and 5 inches wide. I personally use a SwissGear Deluxe Travel Kit. When traveling alone, this kit is actually large enough to fit both my fitness gear and my toiletries. It has extra side pockets, an interior mesh pocket and it comes with refillable travel bottles and a toothbrush and soap container. 

Jump Rope

We've mentioned on this blog before the unbelievable benefits of having a jump rope. It's tiny when folded up - perfect for those who like to travel as light as possible (most of us). It's also an incredibly effective workout tool. There are quite a few options for what type of jump rope you may like best - beaded, cloth, leather and speed to name a few. To find the one that works best for you, check out

Once you have your jump rope, try this great 15-minute jump rope workout

Lacrosse Ball

Soft-tissue massage is important for recovery but you're not going to travel light with a foam roller. A better option is a lacrosse ball. It's smaller and easier to travel with. The smaller surface area allows it to get at trigger points and relax stressed areas of your body. It's also cheap. Benefits of lacrosse ball self-message include pain reduction, reduced inflammation and increased range of motion. 

Due to their increased popularity, there are now a lot of lacrosse ball variations designed specifically for self-message. There's really no need to get a fancy here. Stick with a standard lacrosse ball like this one.

Protein Bars

There are tons of protein bars to choose from. The range of ingredients, pricing and flavors can make it difficult to choose the best one but it is important to consider that many are nothing more than glorified candy bars. Pay careful attention to the ingredients used. If I'm looking for a larger amount of protein, I often choose the Chocolate Deluxe Pure Protein Bar. It's cheap, tastes good (like a chocolate brownie) and has a decent amount of protein (21 grams). When I'm paying more attention to the ingredients and less on the amount of protein, I pack a couple of Banana + Almond Butter MacroBars made by GoMacro.


A person's choice of music is going to vary wildly but most people enjoy listening to music while working out. It will provide motivation and energy, particularly important if you're working out at the end of a long day. Whatever you choose to listen to, the best method I've found for music during a workout is to throw my phone in a Belkin armband. Bring your headphones and you're all set. 

Looking for some playlist ideas? Check out Workout Music by POPSUGAR Fitness.

Workout Program

I've found when traveling that I have a tendency to simply pick random workouts that look good and give them a try. While this strategy might be fun and keep things interesting, it doesn't keep me progressing toward a goal. This is why it's important to have a travel-friendly workout program printed out or on your phone. Just because you're on the road doesn't mean your workouts shouldn't be building on each other and leading towards a stronger, healthier you. 

Bottom Line

That's it, you're all set to go on your next trip!

With your new fitness kit, you'll have the essential items for staying in shape while on the road. It won't take up too much space in your carry-on and the presence of this kit may just provide some more motivation to not skip a workout.

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