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10 Contiki Questions with Katrina Hodgson & Karena Dawn of Tone It Up

karena katrina tone it up

With warmer spring weather and summer around the corner, there is no better time to “spring into bikini season” than right now. Here at Contiki, we know that you all want to look and feel amazing when you take off for your hard-earned vacation, so you can strut our stuff in your bathing suits, look great in those vacation photos, and confidently rock those special outfits you’ve bought for the occasion!

That’s why Contiki is excited to team up with Katrina Hodgson (left) and Karena Dawn (right) of Tone it Up, fitness trainers and certified nutritionists who can get you in summer body shape for your next Contiki vacation – that’s the best kind of motivation, right? We asked these California beach babes our 10 Contiki questions to showcase how travel is an integral part of a healthy lifestyle. Read on!

Share with the Contiki audience a little bit about yourself, your background, and how you created the Tone it Up community!

Karena:  I’m from Indiana and Katrina’s from New Hampshire! We’ve definitely adapted to the Southern California lifestyle.  I think it’s hard for anyone to live in California and not get a little sea salt in their hair and wear flip flops every day–even to the office.

We met at Equinox! I was training for a triathlon and had a magazine shoot coming up. Katrina was a trainer and asked me for my number to train me. We realized we were neighbors and started hanging out. We immediately clicked and our friendship felt like we had already known each other for years.

karena dawn tone it up

Katrina:  Shortly after we met we started Tone It Up. We wanted it to be a blog where girls like us could come support one another to be fit and healthy.  When Karena and I first started TIU we didn’t really know what it would turn into. We wanted to promote healthy living, balance and fun, so when we started doing videos on the beach, more and more people asked us to do beach workouts.

Karena: We owe it to our following for everything we’ve done. They’ve steered us in the direction that we’ve gone and that’s a balanced lifestyle that includes fitness, nutrition, new adventures, fun videos and some sand between our toes.

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How do you two stay fit while you’re on the road and traveling? 

Karena: We’re the girls walking laps and doing lunges around the airport terminal.  With time changes, delays, long flights and a calendar that is overflowing with obligations, it’s important to still maintain a workout routine.  We always say ‘You’ll never regret a workout’.  So we set our alarm a little earlier and get to it.

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Katrina: If we are traveling to a place where working out outdoors is not an option,  we always try to book a hotel with a fitness room.  If there’s no fitness room,  try the stairs or workout in your hotel room.  You can do any of our Tone It Up workouts at home or in a hotel room.

In your personal travels, which destination has been your favorite and why?

Katrina: I loved traveling to Barbados!  The island culture was vibrant and fun-loving and there’s a rich history.

Karena: Both of us want to travel a lot more in the future.  There’s so much history and beauty we have not discovered and embraced yet.  I would say the most unforgettable trip was when Katrina and I went to Turks & Caicos for 10 days to teach a daily boot camp.  This trip was great because we were also active all day while exploring the island by stand-up paddle boarding, sailing, trapeze, beach volleyball and of course dancing the night away!

What are some go-to workouts and stretches that travelers can do when they are traveling long-distance or sitting on the airplane? 

Katrina: Have you seen our Airport Workout :)?  Once you are on the plane and getting a little stir crazy, you can do ankle, shoulder and neck rolls, knee lifts and overhead stretching.  Just don’t hit your neighbor…unless it’s your travel buddy!

What’s one workout anyone can do when they are traveling abroad? 

Karena:  Any of our workouts on or from the Beach Babe DVD series can be done while traveling and with minimal space or equipment!

What are your must-have essential items that you carry with you when you travel? 

Katrina:  Must-haves for travel are healthy on the go snacks like bars and fruit, water, Perfect Fit Protein on the go packets, camera to capture moments and hand sanitizer!

Do you have any travel rituals?

Karena: For the past 10 years, I’ve always picked up a shirt for my dad from everywhere I’ve traveled.  He gets a kick out of it.  Whenever he visits California he only packs those shirts in his luggage.

Katrina:  Oh don’t forget the unspoken ritual that just happens to occur every place we travel!  Cats!  Everywhere!  In both Hawaii and Turks & Caicos there were cats in our hotel room when we checked in.  We’re not the crazy cat ladies, they come to us.

What makes travel an important part of a healthy lifestyle?

Katrina: A healthy lifestyle is all about balance and enjoying every moment!  A Tone It Up girl has a sense of adventure and freedom.  Exploring new cultures is the perfect way to broaden horizons, make new like-minded friends and step out of your comfort zone.

Tell us your favorite travel memory or travel story?

Karena:  Katrina and I have a really special friendship.  Since we work together we have the pleasure of traveling together.  For us, travel is a better experience when you get to share it with someone.  That’s what makes Contiki so awesome too!  You get to travel and make new friends at the same time!  Each destination is another unforgettable memory; Surfing in Costa Rica, Climbing the Napali Coast in Hawaii, Zip Lining through Tulum, Mexico.  We can’t wait to travel more with Contiki in the future!

If you could travel on any of Contiki’s tours right now, which one would it be and why? 

Katrina:  If I could go anywhere right now it would be the Italian Espresso adventure.  My grandmother is a painter and she would paint the landscapes of Venice.  I would love to see her paintings in real life.  I’ve also never traveled anywhere where there’s so much rich history– Leaning Tower of Pisa, Venice canals, The Colosseum, Trevi Fountain and more! Oh and I’m a huge fan of espresso :).

Karena:  I’ve always wanted to go island hopping in Greece!  I would love to relax on the beautiful white sandy beaches and explore historical monuments like the first Olympic stadium, the Acropolis and Parthenon.  It’s the perfect mix of culture and adventure!

karena katrina tone it up

About Tone It Up

Karena and Katrina, your girlfriends and trainers from! Tone It Up is a multi-platform health and fitness brand, founded by best friends, Katrina Hodgson and Karena Dawn, Certified Personal Trainers and Nutrition Coaches. Named ‘The New Faces of Fitness‘ by Jane Fonda and the ‘Power Duo‘ by Marie Claire, these two are helping millions Tone It Up! You may recognize them from the pages of SELF Magazine, Vogue, In Style, or you may have seen them featured on Extra, Oprah, or Ellen for their fitness DVDs and YouTube videos.

With their quirky and friendly approach to a healthy lifestyle, Karena and Katrina bring you the Beach Babe DVD Series, their Tone It Up Nutrition Plan and Perfect Fit Protein.