Don’t waste all that precious vacation time.
Before you pack your bags, get ready to pack your bags.

“Vacation: vacatio, onis, vacare,” to be empty, to have time, to be free.


SunbathersBABIES ARE ON vacation all the time. They are happily empty of worries, have all the time in the world to grow and change, and are free of responsibility.

Little kids can pretty much still empty their heads if allowed to lie on their backs and watch the cloud dragons. They have time, too; endless days, for the most part, once school is out and they’ve made the bed and fed the dog.

But what about you? The grown-up vacationer? “A vacation doesn’t depend on a place, it depends on the vacationers.”Exer-Sex, by Bonnie Prudden

You don’t have to “go away” or “far away” for your vacation. Stay home and send the kids to relatives for a weekend or head for that cozy motel while the “grands” take over for the weekend. You do have to have interludes empty of worry, with time to dream and freedom to recharge.

“If you really understand the tremendous value of vacations properly planned for and undertaken… You will possess an unequaled treasure… a passport to yourself.” —Exer-Sex, by Bonnie Prudden

To get the most out of your mini or maxi vacation, before you head up the mountain, down the river or over to the latest weekend spa, prepare. No sense arriving at that much deserved and planned for destination feeling like a rag.

To help you get started, here are some exercises that you can do in your home, office or just about anywhere.

Anywhere Stress Release
The neck, shoulders, arms, upper and lower back and legs are at risk if the work entails sitting at a desk. Waiting until the end of the shift or day or task to do some exercise is the wrong way to go. The exercise must be as constant as work. Tie this series into habits that will be repeated often enough to assure you of continuing well-spaced treatment: after each phone call, each client or after each trip to another part of the office.

shoulder shrug series exercisesShrug Series

  1. Round the shoulders forward. Press the shoulders back.
  2. Press the shoulders down. Pull the shoulders up.
  3. Look left. Look right.
  4. Look up. Look down.

Do three sets every hour.

Shoulder Rotations forward, Lower Back Stretch, Deep Knee BendsShoulder Rotations Forward
Stretch your right arm straight forward and rotate it counter clockwise until your thumb points to the ceiling. Then rotate the hand clockwise until your thumb points to the wall.

Do six with each arm.

Lower Back Stretch
Before you leave your chair, lean over and let your upper body hang downward in short, gentle bounces. If you are well stretched, open your knees for a better stretch.

Deep Knee Bends
Hold onto the side of your desk. Start with three deep knee bends and gradually work up to ten.

Desk Let-Downs and Flexibility BounceDesk Let-Downs
(Stretch for Chest, Groin and Gastrocs)

Stand away from your desk and keep your heels flat on the floor and your knees straight. Do five “let downs” against your desk.

If you can push up and down, do so.

Start with five and increase to twenty-five.

Flexibility Bounce
(for Back and Hamstring Flexibility)

Start with feet wide apart, hands behind back and head up. Bounce the upper body gently downward eight times. Then allow the upper body to fall forward with arms and head loose.

Do three sets.

Mini-Minute Exercises
Use mini-minutes, two weeks ahead of time, to prepare for your big time out:

  1. Pennies in the BathroomSlow down with mini-time outs. Take a 5-minute stroll after dinner. Put your head back and daydream in the yard with your back against your favorite tree. Start packing the week before, not the night before.
  2. Begin a mini-fitness program, which you incorporate throughout your day by using Anywhere Stress Release and the Pennies in The Bathroom Not only will these exercises help dissipate your muscle tension, they’ll help get your body ready for whatever you decide to do on your vacation.
  3. Take action. Mini-walk to lunch. Weed and rake a mini-bit. Play a round of solitaire or play with the dog.
  4. And if you hurt, use Bonnie Prudden Myotherapy® to erase your muscle pain BEFORE you pack, drive, fly or cruise.

Arrive at your destination pain free, ready to do more dreaming and fit for what you planned. Return home a new, fully recharged and changed you.

And never forget what a vacation really is…a passport to yourself.” —Exer-Sex, by Bonnie Prudden


For more information about Bonnie Prudden®, Bonnie Prudden Myotherapy®, workshops, books, self-help tools, DVDs, educational videos, and blogs, visit Or call 520-529-3979 if you have questions or need help. Enid Whittaker, Managing Director, Bonnie Prudden Myotherapy®