wanderlust: a strong, innate desire to rove or travel about. or in other words, you’ve been bitten by the travel bug. we know it well. you’re thirsting to see new things, travel to new places, meet new people. in fact, as we speak, our chief fitlosopher, angela, is quenching her own wanderlust thirst trekking through europe.
the benefits of travel are varied + vast. in fact, studies have actually shown that even just one trip per year will lower your stress and reduce your risk of heart disease (say whaaaaaaat?!). there’s something to be said for getting out of that creativity-curbing comfort zone. and nothing gets you out of your comfort zone quite like being physically removed from your comfort zone. this leap of faith not only broadens your horizons + provides an education like no other, it boosts your confidence, helping you get past the fear of the unknown. when you’re in a new place, you literally have no clue what’s around the bend, so inevitably, you eventually become more comfortable with not always knowing. how cool is that?? not to mention, is there a better way to inspire those creative juices to flow freely?!
our wanderlusty little chief doesn’t think so! (in fact, we’re pretty pumped to witness all the fabulousness that spills from her travel notebooks upon her return!) we caught up with angela before her big bon voyage to talk all things travel.
[first of all, your itinerary is amazing!! give our fitbookers a quick overview of where all you're going.]
if y’all need me, i'll be sunning my buns on the beaches of croatia, eating my way through italy + geeking out on architecture as i retrace my mother’s steps through spain. first, i fly into belgium for a quick day-trip to bruges. then off to split, makarska, brac, hvar + dubrovnik with friends, one of whom is actually from croatia, so it’ll be lovely to have a local to show us around, meet her family + experience her culture.
next up, i'll head solo to italy where i'll spend a few days in florence meandering before catching a train to spend five glorious days with mi famiglia in northern italy. it never matters what we do – time with them is precious, but i am excited for our family road trip to venice! then off to sevilla where i'll meet my dear friend + former college roommate who lives in southern spain. three days there with her before i trek onward to spend three glorious days in barcelona - then i'll take the fast train up through southern france for a quick two days in paris before heading back to the good ol’ u.s. of a. i still need to book my train + hotel in paris…look at me being spontaneous!!
while i'm beyond excited for the entire trip, spain holds a special place in my heart because it was my parent’s last trip abroad together just months before my mother passed away. i get my love of art + architecture from my momma - in fact it’s always been a secret goal of mine to potentially study architecture again someday and what better place to start than spain? i know it will be very cathartic, not to mention chaotic referencing mom’s highly detailed excel spreadsheet, outlining their trip day by day. as much as i'm my mother’s daughter, i am a bit more laid back when i travel, but i'm looking forward to disconnecting, writing, journaling, and just being.
[why did you decide to embark upon this adventure?]
sometimes we’re given fairly significant odds in life that (at the time) seem insurmountable. but after the dust settles, if you open your eyes wide enough, those same circumstances can and will change you for the better; they give you a new perspective. without a woe-is-me perspective whatsoever, it’s fair to say i've been dealt a few blows lately. rather than sit around and wallow, i travel. i go. i explore. often alone, because to me this is how i disconnect and ultimately reconnect with my truest self. i love speaking other languages, eating new foods, meeting interesting people, meandering aimlessly through city streets, reading on trains, writing in cafes, and journaling on hillsides. don't get me wrong: my life is fabulous. but escaping from the hustle bustle is precisely what refuels me so i can return with a refreshed + renewed excitement for life!
[do you think travel is an important component of life and happiness?]
i think finding your own source of joy is vital to living a happy life. for some, it may be travel. for others, it’s music, art, writing…it doesn’t matter, as long as you identify when you feel the most alive. most people love to travel – i mean, let’s be real. but it can also be impossible for many to get away for two weeks – it’s expensive, time consuming, and not to mention most people have responsibilities, jobs, kiddos! so even if an extended vacation isn’t in the cards (right now), never underestimate the power of a weekend road trip, a staycation, or heck, even a backyard camp out in a tent under the stars. but my thought on travel of any sort is: book it + figure it out later. i booked a one-way trip to europe in january + off i go!
[how does travel relate to goals for you?]
my thought is this: people put off goals in life similarly to how they put off travel: “i'll do that later.” but what if you’re not promised “later”? we are not promised tomorrow – so whatever is on your heart, go after it now.
[what does wanderlust mean to you?]
it reminds me of the quote: “not all who wander are lost.” for me, wanderlust is a purposeful attempt to quench your thirst for adventure.
[part of your itinerary has you traveling solo - are you scared to travel internationally alone? how many ways is this pushing you out of your comfort zone?]
no, not at all. in fact, this trip i'll be with people much more than usual. oddly, i prefer solo travel and often encourage others to venture out alone. you learn so much about yourself! so in some ways, planning an adventure with various friends and family is outside my comfort zone. however, i'm looking forward to it because in each country i'll be with locals and it gives you an entirely authentic experience.
[you are a person who is constantly on the go. how is this experience different for you than usual?]
sometimes we’re given the gift of a wakeup call. it sounds so cliché, but life is short. we should live a life with no regrets. sometimes we forget that we are ultimately in control of our choices. we may not determine the outcome, but we absolutely have the ability to shape our lives.
ok, so we’re officially inspired!! follow along with us on instagram for the next two weeks as angela criss-crosses europe, fitspiration journal in tow, and guess where her #fitbookwanderlust travels have taken her each morning.
now it’s your turn, you fab fitbookers! we're challenging you to get out of your comfort zone (and bring your fitbook or fitspiration journal along for the ride!) and go somewhere you’ve never been - even if it’s just that lake you’ve been meaning to check out in the next town over. tag us on instagram at @fitbook + hashtag those travel photos with #fitbookwanderlust. now, hit the road, jack!