For some people, holidays aren’t just about the ultimate dose of R&R. They’re about finding a balance between being active and having fun. To show you how easy it is to stay ship-shape while you’re at sea, we invited health and wellness duo Frankie and Wayne Bridge onboard a Marella Discovery cruise through the Norwegian Fjords. Their challenge was to design their very own Marella By U itinerary with the help of top mindfulness psychologist, Hope Bastine. Read on to discover our top tips for promoting health and wellbeing on holiday…
A holiday can be the perfect stress buster. It’s a chance to get away from everyday life and see more of the world. But did you know that the benefits to your wellbeing start long before you pack your suitcase? Having a planned break in the diary is known to boost happiness in the lead up. Anchor down your holiday plans well in advance by getting tickets booked and blocking out the dates in your calendar. Then, when life gets stressful, you can let your mind drift off to thoughts of the beautiful destinations you’ll be visiting.
Try new experiences
New sights, sounds and experiences are all part of the package when you travel. The good news is that psychologists have found changing your environment to be an effective way to shift your perspective and add meaning to hum-drum life. Being surrounded by stunning scenery can’t hurt, either. So, we chose our Wonders of the Fjords cruise as the base for Frankie and Wayne’s health and wellbeing-focused itinerary. Norway is blanketed by natural beauty, from cascading waterfalls and sapphire-blue fjords, to frosty-white glaciers and snow-capped mountains. It’s the perfect destination to awake the senses and make you feel revived.
Get to the water
Research shows that even just looking at a flowing river or rolling waves can release calming neurotransmitters – dopamine and serotonin – that banish stress hormones to the depths of the sea. What better way to get out on the water for a healthy dose of calm than taking out a kayak on glistening waters, surrounded by dramatic mountain scenery? Our kayaking excursion at Geirangerfjord is just the ticket – this natural masterpiece is often touted as the most beautiful fjord in the world.
One of the best bits about going on holiday is the food. The dishes on offer at our onboard restaurants are a far cry from the quick supper you whip up after the evening commute. Each Marella ship has at least three restaurants, so you can mix and match different cuisines during your cruise. On Marella Discovery, you can sample flavourful pan-Asian foods at Kora La, or head to Surf and Turf for steak and nutrient-packed seafood. And don’t forget the most important meal of the day – there are plenty of breakfast options that’ll kick start your day the right way, including poached eggs, yoghurt and fresh fruit. If you have any special dietary requirements, the chefs will cook you something suitable on the spot.
Exercise as a couple
You’ve heard it before, couples that train together stay together – and with good reason, too. Exercising with your partner is a tried and tested way to get more out of a workout, thanks to the emotional support and motivation it brings. A little healthy competition doesn’t go amiss either. All of our ships have gyms onboard, where you can arrange personal training sessions as a pair, or join group fitness classes. Or, if you want to exercise with fresh sea air on tap, take to the deck and plan your own circuit training workout, or jog a few laps of the running track.