August 2005 Newsletter
The Healthy Hotel
Dear Fellow Business
Major hotel chains have launched a flurry of fitness-related programs,
making it easier than ever to get a good workout on the road. This
month's newsletter includes a review of their various programs and
As always, there's plenty
of new activity in the Travel Fitness
Blog, including Travel Fit Tips and news releases from your
favorite hotels and airlines.
To Your Health,
Customer Service, Healthy Travel
Network and Chief
Hotels Serve Up Fitness
Hilton, Hilton Garden, Marriott, Omni, and Westin have all launched
in-room fitness programs. Their free or low-cost ammenities include
everything from fitness kits, specialized equipment, pay-per-view
programming, and healthy snacks.
All of the programs are good and offer a welcome change from the hotel
gym. Overall, we liked the Hilton Garden program the best because it
had the widest array of options and at a reasonable price. The Omni,
however, was the only hotel chain to combine fitness with healthy
eating by swapping the traditional mini-bar snacks for more nuitritious
When you stay at a Hilton, you can check out the Travel Well Fit Kit at
the front desk. This complimentary package includes:
Developed in partnership with Bally Total Fitness, the exercise booklet
is accurate and complete. It includes three different training
routines, each of which includes nine exercises. Just a few of the
exercises included are:
- Yoga mat
- Elastic exercise bands
- Resistance tubing
- Two sets of hand weights
- Basic conditioning instructions
The booklet is packaged nicely, with easy-to-follow instructions and
pictures. Our only suggestion for improvement would be to show the
exercises being performed in a Hilton hotel room, rather than in a gym.
We especially liked the fact that the booklet included three different
exercise programs, so that if you are staying for multiple days, you
can do a different program each day.
- Chest flys
- Lateral raises
- Leg Kickbacks
- Hammer curls
- Dead lifts
- Leg kickbacks
If resistance bands and hand weights aren't your thing, you can take
advantage of several more expensive options at Hiltons:
- In-Room treadmills--Most Hilton locations will
deliver a treadmill to your room for a nominal nightly fee.
- Bally's personal trainer--If you're used to working
out with a
trainer, you can schedule an hour with a Bally's certified trainer. You
can schedule your session by calling the hotel's Personal Performance
Leader, and your session can take place at the hotel or at a Bally's
We really liked the workout options at Hilton Garden because of the
diversity of equipment and exercises. You can get a general workout, or
you can do a yoga or Pilates workout. Their complimentary Stay Fit Kit
For about $3.00, you can combine this equipment with their in-room
pay-per-view fitness programming. Each video is 25 to 30 minutes in
length and titles include: Yoga, Pilates, Core Body, and General
Fitness. Programming is available at most, but not all Hilton Gardens.
- Pilates band
- Yoga mat, strap and bricks
- 8 lb abs ball
- 3 lb hand weights
- Resistance rope
Marriott's Great Health - Fit for You program offers three different
complimentary workout options. The Marriott features the foam version
of the BodyWedge, which includes 21 different exercises
to target abs, buttocks, thighs,
chest and lower back.
In addition, you can check out the BodyRev, which
allows you to
combine aerobics with strength training, for a total-body workout.
Developed by former Navy Seal, Alden Mills, the BodyRev facilitates the
latest fitness craze--Functional Fitness.
If you don't like either of those two choices, you can grab a Traveling
Trainer kit from fitness guru Michael Sena. The kit includes three
resistance bands of varying levels, door attachment, and instructional
The best thing we liked about Omni's Ideal Living program was the food!
Combining fitness with healthy eating, Omni has introduced new menu
options and new in-room snacks to compliment your fitness efforts.
Their menu options meet a diverse set of dietary needs and include:
Most of the other hotel chains have also developed health-conscious
menu items, but Omni is the only one to specifically target the dreaded
hotel mini-bar. In their Get Fit guest rooms, your mini-bar is stocked
with energy bars and sports drinks, rather than peanuts and booze.
Unfortunately, we couldn't reach their guest services people to find
out what specific items they stock. Be
sure to check out our March 2005 article on how to pick the best snack
bar, before you dive into the Omni mini-bar.
- Heart Healthy Entree - Cardamom Encrusted Atlantic
Salmon with Red Apple and Fennel Slaw and Vegetable Nage
- Low Sodium Entree - Rosemary Lamb Chops
- Vegetarian Entree - Black Bean Enchilada, Vegetarian
Grits and Vegetables
- High Protein/Low Carbohydrate Entree - Colorado
Pheasant Breast with Cracked Black Pepper
- Sugar Free Dessert - Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake
Your $14.99 per night upcharge also gets you an in-room treadmill
and a Get Fit Kit. The kit includes a handy canvas bag, complete
with a mini radio headset, a floor mat, two dumbbells, an elastic
exercise band and an informative booklet of exercises. You'll also
receive a refreshing bottle of chilled water and a hand towel. It's a
perfect stress reliever between meetings or if you want to work out in
the privacy of your own guest room.
Can't expense the extra $15 for the Get Fit guest room? Ask at the desk
for the complimentary Get Fit Kit anyway!
Last but not least, Westin continues to be a fitness leader. Having
spent millions to renovate their on-site fitness facilities with
state-of-the-art equipment, Westin has gone even further and introduced
WestinWORKOUT Rooms. Available at all North American facilities, these
specialized rooms feature
This convenient, private exercise environment also features a fitness
library by Rodale Press, the leading publisher of information on
healthy, active lifestyles, which includes several books and magazines
including Runner's World, Bicycling Magazine and a customized local
running map. We love the variety of equipment, but of course,
WestinWORKOUT Rooms aren't free.
- Either a Reebok Tomahawk XL Indoor Cycle or Life
- Reebok Pilates/Yoga and Spinning DVDs
- Adjustable dumbbells
- Resistance tubing
- Stability ball
- Yoga mat
- Additional Reebok workout equipment.
If you're a runner, you'll love RunWESTIN, which is free. Working with
the staff at Runner's World magazine, Westin has developed maps for
three and five-mile jogging or walking routes in the hotel's vicinity
in every city. These handy pocket-sized maps contain suggested routes,
level of difficulty and local points of interest. Also available at
select hotels is RunWESTIN, a complimentary program offering guided,
scenic three-mile morning runs three days a week. Led by Westin's
Running Concierge trained by the experts at Runner's World, the run
includes a warm up session with Reebok training tips and can be
customized into a fun individual or group run. Wow!