Camping with Parkinson’s: Exercise and Nutrition

salmon cooking on stove camping

This is the sixth post in our series about camping and Parkinson’s. If you missed the previous episodes, you can find them here

Eating nutritiously is hard enough as it is. Now, take away your full-sized fridge, freezer, storage, and add in many hours of driving. In this episode of “Camping With Parkinson’s,” our guides Marty Acevedo and Carol Clupny share their tips and tricks for eating well on the road and keeping up with their exercise routines.

EPISODE 5: Nutrition and exercise

TIPS AND TRICKS MENTIONED

FOOD
  • Planning ahead is key because there is limited space in an RV. Consider bringing freeze-dried meals, shelf-stable foods, or meals with simple ingredients
  • Marty and Carol recommend making breakfast in the camper and then having a “luncher” (a combination of lunch and dinner) at a local restaurant. This gives you a new experience and the chance to meet new people as well as a camping favorite, leftovers!
  • When eating out, try finding places unique to the area rather than chain restaurants. The food will often be healthier, taste better, and you’ll likely get information from locals on the best things to see and do in the area

Marty’s mantra for eating well, even while traveling?

“You shouldn’t follow a diet, you should have a healthy lifestyle.”

exercise
  • Exercise can be tricky when sitting for long days. Consider exercising while you’re in the passenger seat. Try cycling while seating with a desk pedaler or do thigh squeezes using a small exercise ball
  • At the campsite, try doing yoga (no equipment required), squats, or lift weights using items from your campsite and RV such as rocks, cans, or bottles. You may also consider taking a nightly walk around the campground; you’ll not only get your exercise, but you’ll meet new people, too
  • Bring a bike. Not comfortable with a regular bike? Consider a tandem or recumbent bike.
    • Note: Bikes can be heavy to lift up and down from a bike rack. If you have a self-contained RV, consider buying a small metal trailer with a ramp, so you can easily roll your bikes on and off
  • The varied schedule of traveling can make it difficult to stick to a workout routine. Consider signing up for an online class that has a repetitive schedule. This may keep you accountable to exercise
  • Days of travel may be long and there may not be time to do an entire exercise plan each day. When this happens, use the process of setting up your campsite as exercise. Carry the heavy things or walk a little more briskly than usual when moving things to their proper place

want more ideas on eating well?

Nutrition and Parkinson’s with Marty Acevedo

The 17 Most Commonly Asked Questions About Nutrition

How To Stock Your Fridge, Freezer, And Pantry To Live Well With Parkinson’s

10 Tips For Exercising With Parkinson’s

Parkinson’s Exercise Essentials

4-Part Exercise Mini-Series

GET INSPIRED

Check out some of the unique places, things, and adventures Marty and her husband, Ace Acevedo, have discovered thus far in their camper-van travels.

GET CONNECTED

Email blog@dpf.org with your best camping stories or tips and tricks you would like to share with the Parkinson’s community. Interested in getting in touch with Marty and Carol? You can reach out to them personally by visiting Marty’s Ambassador page or Carol’s Ambassador page.

 

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