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Crew Life

Yachtie Glow: ‘Busy and tired’ no excuse for crew to give up exercise


Yachtie Glow: by Angela Orecchio

It’s easy for yacht crew to make excuses about why we can’t fit exercise into our lives. We’re busy, tired, have little space and, frankly, don’t often feel like it after a 12-hour day and one-too-many leftover guest croissants. With this type of lifestyle, it’s easy to let weeks and months go by without any exercise at all.

Luckily, in spite of not having the land-based opportunities to go to the gym regularly or participate in an intense body shred program, we can still exercise to stay strong, have more energy and feel better. We need only acknowledge our excuses for what they are and look for solutions that fit our unique lifestyles.

I’m too tired.
It’s important to ask ourselves how much good quality sleep we’re actually getting. Going to bed at midnight and waking up at 7 a.m. might not be enough sleep. Studies have shown that everyone varies in the amount of sleep they need, so it’s important to not force ourselves to stay up late if our bodies are giving us signs not to.

Of course, when we’re busy with guests, the best we can do is take advantage of breaks and any other time when extra sleep is possible. Then do a quick exercise just after waking to take advantage of the energy reserves from sleep before getting back to work.

Also, drinking more water and eating healthier during the day helps ensure that the body isn’t tired from bombarding it with junk food and dehydration.

I don’t have time.
Almost, everyone has 10 minutes to do some type of exercise, even when guests are on board. If the boat is very busy, stretching and deep breathing is a type of exercise that anyone can do before going to bed or when just waking up. If time permits, try 10-20 minutes of a body-weight workout with 3-5 types of exercise at 10-20 repetitions each.

I don’t have space.
Get off the boat if possible, or try using a deck and a yoga mat with permission. In a small cabin, get creative – use the edge of a bed for tricep dips, for example. Purchase a set of mini-bands or small hand weights to do standing exercises that don’t require a lot of movement.

I don’t feel like it; I’ll do it later.
It is quite possible to never feel like exercising. To overcome this, we must push ourselves until it becomes a habit. Finding exercises that we love is the best way to overcome this excuse. At the very least, we can find something to listen to or focus on that is exciting or entertaining to get us through the exercise.

My body is sore from working.
Yoga and pilates are excellent options to strengthen the body and prevent injuries, and they don’t require a lot of time or space to see benefits.

I’m not eating healthy, so why even bother?
It might seem that if we’re not eating healthy, exercising won’t matter much. However, exercising is a great motivator for eating healthy. We’ve all heard the saying “You are what you eat.” In this case, you also eat what you are – meaning that as you start feeling better from exercise, you will want to eat healthier to match how you feel.

Angela Orecchio is a chief stew, certified fitness instructor and health coach. Her blog can be found at Comments are welcome below.

About Angela Orecchio

Angela Orecchio is a chief stew and certified health coach. This column was edited from blog, Savvy Stewardess, The Smart Girl’s Guide to Yachting. Contact her through

View all posts by Angela Orecchio →

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