4 Easy Ways to Stay Fit at Disney World

by | Feb 4, 2022 | Animal Kingdom, Disney Springs, EPCOT, Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom, WDW Blog, WDW Food

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Disney World is a *vacation* destination for most, when we all loosen our belts and take it easy. But if you want to stay fit at Disney World during your trip, is that even possible? Here are 4 ways to stay fit during your next trip to Walt Disney World.

In the land of churros, Tonga Toast, and Dole Whips, who can possibly expect to maintain their fitness goals on a Walt Disney World Resort vacation? (Beaches and Cream’s Kitchen Sink, we’re looking at you.)

Why, you can, of course. Don’t worry; I’m not an animal who’s about to suggest you spend your Disney World vacay eating salads, forsaking pasta, and making puppy-dog eyes at the brioche ice cream sandwich as you suck on a soda water and a limp celery stick.

No, I have better ideas that don’t involve self-sacrifice and denial. Plus, they’ll reveal new parts of the Walt Disney World Resort to you, make your vacation even better, and keep you feeling fit as you feast your way through the World.

1. Walk. Everywhere.

A lone girl walks down Main Street USA

Photo by Judd Helms

The Skyliner and the monorail offer fun transportation options you won’t find many—if any—other places, so sure, take the monorail from EPCOT to the Ticket and Transportation Center, or take the Skyliner to Disney’s Hollywood Studios or Disney’s Riviera Resort.

But if you want to explore the World on a whole other level, let your feet do the walking most everywhere else. 

Did you know the winding walking path that leads you from Disney’s Hollywood Studios to EPCOT takes you past some quietly splendid displays of Florida foliage, has almost no other foot traffic, and offers you a heart-healthy way to recharge your batteries? (Introverts, this is your path.)

In the name of research, I went to Disney World last week, and we walked the path to EPCOT, clocking 3,400 steps between the Studios’ turnstiles and the ones at EPCOT’s International Gateway. (Note: I have notoriously stubby legs; your steps may vary.)

Plus, we beat the boat launching the same time we left. The walk itself took roughly 30 minutes, with a few glute-happy inclines (even for this flatland Florida girl, they were easy-peasy, though.) I clocked more than 8 miles that day at Disney (and slept like a baby that night, too!).

Statue and fountain of Gaston in front of Gaston's Tavern at Disney's Magic Kingdom

Photo by Cliff Wang

Other easy ways to get your steps in at the Walt Disney World Resort include walking the path from the Magic Kingdom to the resorts.

The monorail spoils us, but you can circumnavigate the Seven Seas Lagoon, past the Magic Kingdom, past the Grand Floridian, and arrive at the Polynesian appropriately ready for a Nautilus or a Mosquito Mojito at Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto.

Of course, don’t forget the simplest ways to stay healthy at the Walt Disney World Resort: Eschew the tram in favor of hoofing it from your car to the front gate, don’t ever take the Friendship Boats to get from former Future World to World Showcase, and never, ever leave Animal Kingdom without taking the Maharajah Jungle Trek.

2. But You Can Run, Too

The finish line at Disneyland's 2012 runDisney

Photo by Mike Billick

When you line up for rope-drop, Disney Cast Members will remind you that you should not run to your first ride of the day. It’s for your safety.

However, there is an exception to the whole no-running-at-Disney rule: runDisney. If you want to stay fit at Disney World and get a special medal or two, runDisney is the way to go. Each race is different and offers special perks.

Tap here for the 2022-2023 runDisney calendar. Just remember to sign up early; the races tend to sell out quickly.

3. Have Your Big Mac with a Side of Bicycle

Exercise bikes outside the Walt Disney World McDonalds

Photo by Tina Chiu

OK, raise your hand if you think of “healthy lifestyle” when you think of McDonald’s. No one? Yeah, me neither.

But when the only remaining McDonald’s on Walt Disney World Property reopened after an extensive renovation, it reopened with—wait for it—exercise bikes outside. Think of it as a PlayPlace for those of us who want to assuage the guilt of a lifetime of Supersizing.

4. Take Advantage of the Walt Disney World Resort Hotel Fitness Facilities

A decorative bike at Disney's Old Key West resort

Photo by Courtney Reynolds

Feeling motivated to work out on vacation?

Stay at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn and Boardwalk Villas, Disney’s Old Key West Resort, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Resort, Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, and Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort. All these resorts have access to 24/7 fitness centers.

Not staying at one of those resorts? Port Orleans and other resorts have fitness trails—even the Value resorts have 1-mile jogging trails.

If that isn’t enough, Disney Springs has wellness programs periodically throughout the year, including dance parties (and hey, while you’re there, check out family-owned Fit2Run for running shoes and fitness gear.)

With all these options, you can keep yourself moving and enjoy those Mickey Bars without regret!


Have any more tips on how to keep fit at Walt Disney World? Tell us over in the comments on our Facebook page!


Not sure if you’re going? You can just get more information about a potential Disney vacation.

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Written by Cathy Salustri

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Cathy Salustri's formative years revolved around Walt Disney World, whether it was having an OG annual pass (four months out of the year only!), wearing acid-washed denim to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party, or working as a tour guide at the now-defunct Inside the Magic attraction at the then-Disney-MGM Studios. She loves all of Florida, too—her Florida travel narrative, "Backroads of Paradise", earned her an interview in the New York Times, and she freelances for other Florida publications. Follow on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook, listen to her Florida Spectacular podcast, and sign up for her monthly Florida newsletter.
Cathy Salustri

Written by Cathy Salustri

Cathy Salustri's formative years revolved around Walt Disney World, whether it was having an OG annual pass (four months out of the year only!), wearing acid-washed denim to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party, or working as a tour guide at the now-defunct Inside the Magic attraction at the then-Disney-MGM Studios. She loves all of Florida, too—her Florida travel narrative, "Backroads of Paradise", earned her an interview in the New York Times, and she freelances for other Florida publications. Follow on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook, listen to her Florida Spectacular podcast, and sign up for her monthly Florida newsletter.