Hilliard Studio Method's Healthy Vacation Tips + Exclusive Video Access

Vacationing isn’t just about a change in location—it’s a state of mind. And while a getaway should be more about rest and relaxation than restrictions and regimens, there’s no need to throw away all the energy put toward getting a beach-ready body for a few popcorn shrimp and piña coladas.

Here, the dynamic mother-daughter duo behind the Charlotte-based workout studio Hilliard Studio Method, Liz Hilliard and Clary Hilliard Gray (featured above) provide easy tips and tricks for staying on track while enjoying a much-deserved trip. From an easy way to squeeze in some exercise (keep reading for exclusive access to their Essential Plank and Pushup Video!) to drinks and dining substitutions that don’t feel like a sacrifice, here’s how to keep up the healthy momentum throughout your summer vacation.



While cocktails with cute names can be tempting, HSM’s co-founders warn that they are full of sugar and empty calories. Usually, Liz and Clary say, the more ingredients in a drink the more damage it will do to all of your hard bikini body work—so it’s best to keep things simple. In addition, they advise alternating adult beverages with a glass of water or sparkling water with citrus to stay hydrated and decrease the chance you’ll overindulge. About those adult beverages…here are Liz and Clary’s recommendations for what to sip and what to skip:

  • SKIP: A margarita (740 calories).
    SIP: Order a good tequila on the rocks with several slices of lime (65 calories).
  • SKIP: A vodka tonic (200 calories).
    SIP: A vodka soda with a lemon or lime (65 calories).
  • SKIP: A French 75 (260 calories).
    SIP: A glass of bubbly champagne (85 calories).
  • SKIP: A pretty pink Cosmopolitan (150 calories).
    SIP: A glass of rosé (80 calories).


Eating on vacation is all about ease, from grab-and-go beach snacks to evenings out at local restaurants. Here, Liz and Clary offer ways to be calorie-conscious without feeling like you’re missing out:

  • SKIP: Flavored yogurt.
    SAVOR: Plain Greek yogurt, which packs more protein and less sugar. For an added punch, Liz and Clary recommend bringing a bag of Chia seeds to mix in for additional protein, fiber, and omega-3s.
  • SKIP: Sugary popsicles.
    SAVOR: Frozen organic grapes and chilled watermelon.
  • SKIP: Potato chips.
    SAVOR: Organic popcorn. If you’re still craving something crunchy, Liz and Clary suggest reaching for celery and carrot sticks (or your favorite raw vegetable) dipped in hummus.
  • SKIP: Fish doused in sauce.
    SAVOR: Sauce on the side. When ordering fish, ask for the sauce to arrive separately; better yet, ask for no sauce at all. This goes for salads as well, and instead of ranch or other heavy options, “Ask for olive oil, vinegar, and a lemon wedge on the side so you can dress your salad to your liking,” Liz and Clary advise.
  • SKIP: French fries.
    SAVOR: A side salad. While the substitution is obvious, the added benefits include fiber that will help you feel full and aid in digestion. “And you can’t beat raw fruits and veggies as far as vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients go!” Liz and Clary say.

EXCLUSIVE ACCESS: HSM’s essential plank and pushup VIDEO

While you are likely staying active with fun activities like paddle boarding, biking, and beach walks, squeezing in a quick strengthening workout while on vacation is both effective and an easy way to feel like you’re maintaining your usual fitness routine. Clocking in at under eight and a half minutes, HSM’s Essential Plank and Pushup Video, accessible for free for one month via the following form and link using the password “TSGPLANK,” is perfect for when you want to stay fit while on the road.

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