Yes, right, you are going to say, after reading the topic of this post. Most people think that there is no such thing as a healthy cruise. When we think about cruising we think of endless buffet lines and chocoholic midnight buffets. But it’s possible! I did it! I am happy to report that not a pound was gained during my latest one week Caribbean cruise. So, this is how I did it.
1. I ate healthy (well, if you don’t count two peaces of tiramisu I had one night). NCL actually has a contract with Cooking Light magazine and to my delight they had plenty on healthy options. One of the dining options actually included a restaurant that served a complete menu from Cooking Light magazine (calories, carbs, fat grams and all actually included on the menu). Of course I could not torture my poor husband and son to eat during their entire vacation in the healthy restaurant, but… regular restaurant and a buffet also included one healthy option of an appetizer, an entrée, and a dessert. So I was in my glory. Most days the food from the Cooking Light menu was excellent. I was only disappointed once during lunch on the day at sea, but I just replaced with a healthy salad from the salad bar. Amazingly enough, salad bar did not have any low fat or fat free dressings (which I would not eat anyway, G-d only knows what kind of chemicals are in there), but olive oil and vinegar was available, which is my number one choice anyway.
2. I exercised everyday. Sun has very nice gym on board (small, but had all of the necessary equipment). Additionally, NCL offers classes in a specially designated studio which is very spacious, some for an additional fee. More specifically, every morning at 7:30 AM Morning Stretch Class was offered for no extra fees, which I did not attend. Most of the days, a free Aerobics class was offered as well. I actually attended one during one of the days at sea. The instructor was good, the music was good, but the class was a little short (about 30 minutes versus the usual hour at my gym on shore). Spinning, yoga, and pilates classes were also offered for an additional fees of $10 per class or a flat fee of $70 for an unlimited number of classes. I also did not attend since my latest craze is BodyPump and Zumba. Finally, there were two running tracks on Sun, a shorter one on the 13th floor and a longer one on the 6th floor. Three and a half loops on the 6th floor made it a mile long run. So every morning I ran with the ocean breeze in my face and a sight of a beautiful Caribbean island that our ship was approaching. It was just great!
3. I chose activities that burned a lot of calories. I recall reading somewhere that dancing burns about 600 calories an hour, so we danced almost every night. During one of the sea days, my son and I participated in a Scavenger Hunt contest that required running around the entire ship. We walked a lot on every island. Finally, don’t forget the swimming we did every single day.
Healthy cruising is possible, doable, and actually enjoyable.