The Travel Workout, Mastered: A Q&A With Charlee Atkins

Thursday, March 15th, 2018

It doesn’t take much Instagram stalking to come across Charlee Atkins—Soul Cycle aficionado, fitness guru and creator of Le RETREAT—a program that infuses traveling with exercise. Charlee and co. recently ventured to Cartagena, Colombia to embark on a weekend of travel workout routines, local explorations, and some very necessary hydration with our insulated sports water bottle. Make sure to read up before you head out on your spring break getaway.

S’well: What’s your go-to workout regimen when you’re traveling and can’t get to a class or the gym?

Charlee Atkins: I take it to the streets (or the beach) and I stick to these three things every time:

1. 20-min run: I set a timer and run for 10-minutes in one direction non-stop. As soon as the timer goes off, I turn around and head back to the hotel.

2. Timed intervals: 50 seconds of work, 10 seconds recovery. I’ll cycle through 4 – 6 exercises, three times each. Here’s a pretty easy bodyweight one that knocks out 20 minutes of exercise:

– Squat jumps

– Push-ups

– Alternating side lunges

– Mountain climbers

– Jumping Jacks

– Butterfly Sit-Ups

3. Le STRETCH: I always travel with my S’well and a lacrosse ball for my signature Le Stretch class. 

S: What does a full day at Le RETREAT look like? What’s the balance between being active and chilling out?

CA: First things first: we wake up and caffeinate! Then we fit 60 – 90 minutes of exercise in before breakfast. We enjoy breakfast as a group, shower and get ready for the day. From there we try to stay outdoors as much as possible to explore. We’ll grab a later lunch, then get in a quick Le Stretch in the afternoon (35 mins), before getting ready to go out for sunset drinks and dinner. Finally, we’ll head back to the Le RETREAT home and play card games, charades or just sit around and talk.

S: What’s your favorite thing about the new S’well Sport bottle? How did you put it to use on your trip?

CA: S’well water bottles are great for having easy access to cold water all day. It was very hot in Cartagena so we all made sure to bring our bottles with us. When the afternoon kicked in, the water was replaced with a little spritzer—half white wine and half sparkling water. Cool drinks all day!

S: What’s the secret to staying hydrated through long workouts — or on long flights?

CA: Stopping periodically throughout walks to chug water (not sip). It’s best to take water on in large quantities versus sipping all day. If I don’t drink my entire bottle in the moment, I would forget to stay hydrated all day.

S: What did you love most about Cartagena?

CA: The Walled City of Cartagena was so perfect for a retreat. A lot of culture, great Instagram moments, stunning architecture, and so much to see and do in a few days. Service is typically slower in foreign countries, which is a great excuse to slow down and enjoy the moment.

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P.S. Want more workout tips and travel advice? Follow along at @swellbottle, @charleeatkins, @le.sweat and #swelladventures.