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7 Fitness Tips For Expats In A New Country

Fitness Tips For Expats


Moving to a new country is a challenging task. It means starting a new chapter in your life, changing your environment as well as your habits. While it’s a great way to broaden your views and explore new cultures, it also presents unique challenges. Everything is new and exciting, but also stressful. Additionally, you have to find housing and adjust to your new job. With all these things going on, many people tend to neglect staying fit and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.



Although we all know how important this is, we often feel too tired to incorporate our old routines into our already busy schedules. But once you start, you’ll quickly notice how beneficial regular exercising is, both for your mental and physical wellbeing. What’s best, you don’t have to spend tons of money or time to establish your routine – just follow these seven valuable fitness tips for expats!


#1 Give yourself time to settle down

Naturally, there are many things to do right after moving to another country. Finding accommodation, unpacking, finding your way around, getting the right health insurance, etc., can be very stressful. In addition to all that, not knowing many people (or maybe even no one) as well as talking in a different language can make the first few days or weeks exceptionally difficult.

Therefore, it’s no wonder that staying fit and healthy isn’t going to be on the top of your priorities list. And that is perfectly normal – give yourself time to find your feet. Don’t be too harsh on yourself in the beginning and focus on settling comfortably in. Of course, don’t allow yourself to procrastinate and find excuses later on.


#2 Explore your new surroundings

Luckily, there is a perfect way to combine useful with pleasant. You certainly want to learn more about your new city and explore everything it has to offer. And what better way to do it than by walking and hiking? These two activities are beneficial in so many ways! You’ll stay active and enjoy physical exercise. Plus, it will help you reduce stress and improve your cardiovascular health. On top of all that, you’ll explore your new place and experience all the wonders firsthand. Also, if you want to visit more places than you can reach on foot, rent or buy a bike. It is another excellent way to keep in form and get to know your surroundings better.

A man and a woman on the bikes, staying fit and laughing.

Explore your new city on a bike and meet new friends.


#3 Fitness can be free!

Expats face many mental health challenges, and keeping yourself busy and active can help you keep these issues at bay. It’s a common misconception that you have to immediately hit the gym and spend a lot of money in order to stay fit. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Instead, make the most of the great outdoors! Find parks and other recreational areas where you’ll enjoy running or hiking! In many cities, there are outdoor workout spots with cardiovascular equipment, pull-up bars, and other fitness equipment. What’s best, they’re entirely free, and you can use them whenever it suits you.


#4 Meet new people

Being away from your family and friends can take a heavy toll on your mental wellbeing, so meeting new friends is an important step in adapting to your new environment. For example, exercising in parks and joining informal fitness groups is an excellent start. It will help you deal with homesickness and loneliness after moving to a new country as well as broaden your social circle. In addition to that, we have a few extra tips on how to achieve this. Take classes or join the available clubs! You can take dance, aerobics classes, or join a gym. Find something that appeals to you and where you’re bound to expand your social circle.


#5 Establish and maintain your new routine

This might be one of the most challenging fitness tips for expats. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is demanding in ordinary circumstances, and when you need to start over in a new country, it can be especially daunting. Although exploring different fitness options and learning more about your new place is fun and useful, it’s not enough. Once you properly settle in, it’s crucial to establish your new routine and keep it up. Discover the activities you enjoy the most and see how you can incorporate them into your new daily routine. When you strike the perfect balance between work and pleasure, keep it up on a regular basis. Soon, workouts will become a habit and a special time you’re looking forward to.

A woman in white and orange clothes working out.

Creating an ideal workout routine is one of the best fitness tips for expats.

#6 Set your goals

Another important tip is to set your workout goals from the start. Maintaining a regular routine can be demanding, especially with all the temptations in your city. If you’re like me and enjoy trying out new cuisine and finding out about new delicious treats and desserts, staying fit and in good shape can be quite a challenge. For that reason, it’s best to set your goals and a reward system. For example, you really want an extravagant meal at that charming restaurant you’ve discovered? Or you want to fit into that beautiful dress you saw? Set the goals that will motivate you, and treat yourself after accomplishing them!


#7 Focus on the healthy lifestyle

As we’ve already hinted, maintaining a healthy lifestyle isn’t only about regular exercise. It also encompasses other aspects of your life. For example, ensure you drink clean water and stay hydrated. Additionally, you need a healthy, balanced diet. Eating a lot of fruit and vegetables can help you accomplish that. Although local street food or lavish meals at restaurants can be tempting, it’s vital to your health to exercise reasonable portion control. Don’t miss out on anything, but be moderate about your intake. Also, ensure you have enough sleep! Your sleep patterns will affect your mood, energy levels during the day as well as emotions so try to always have a good night’s rest.

Colorful and healthy foods arranged on a table

Explore the local markets and grocery shops and create healthy and delicious new meals

Final fitness tips for expats

While staying fit after moving abroad may be a daunting task, especially just after the move, it’s not impossible. There are many other challenges you’ll face as an expat, but eating healthy foods and staying physically active can help you overcome them. It will boost your self-esteem and confidence, enable you to focus on positive experiences, and deal with negative feelings. Not only that but you’ll meet new like-minded people and enjoy life more. Follow these seven fitness tips for expats, and change your life for the better.