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4 Ways to Help Your Body While Travelling
Travelling large distances is unavoidable for most of us. Whether we’re doing it because of work or we’re off to an exciting destination, sooner or later, we are all going to experience mass-transit in some shape and form.
I've travelled numerous times for work and found a few hacks along the way. Hopefully, you’ll find them useful as well, and experience the tangible benefits they can make in our lives.
Let’s start with the biggest one, in my opinion...
Drinking water. I realize this is a basic one, but it lays the foundation to improve your overall mood during and after the commute.
As we travel - through different time zones, temperature changes and elevation changes - our bodies go through a massive amount of stress trying to adapt to the conditions. This means our heart rate increases, we sweat, we use our brains more to make sure we’re going the right way and we usually rush from location to location. Large amounts of energy are needed to perform all of this and water can effectively help you cope with the changes.
Water not only hydrates us, but it also alkalizes us. Meaning, we find a more neutral (balanced) internal state and not an acidic one. Acidic environments are where sickness and exhaustion lie.
Recommendation: bring a small reusable water bottle with you while travelling, fill it up at fountains and drink more than you usually do. Your pee should be clear. Yellow is bad folks!
Avoid sugar. This goes hand-in-hand with drinking water. Again, more sugar increases our acidity levels, thus increasing our stress. Food served in airports, and served anywhere near high-traffic areas are usually atrocious. They lack a lot of the nutrients we need to fuel our bodies effectively. And they are almost always high in sugars, salts, and bad fats.
This means the food we eat when travelling can make us fidget more in our seats, upset our stomachs and take us out of a relaxed state.
Recommendation: bring a handful (or two) of mixed nuts to snack on, as well as some chopped veggies. They will help you feel full and help you resist cravings for sugary foods. They’re also easy to pack and don't get rotten that fast.
Ear plugs or noise cancelling headphones. This one is for your sanity. Believe me, it doesn’t matter where you sit on the plane, train or bus, you’re going to be bothered my someone or some sound.
Find a pair that suits your style and comfort level and always keep them with you.
Taking power naps or extended sleep periods not only passes the time but also helps you relax. It’s during these periods that our body re-energizes.
As a bonus: bring a sweater with a hood or a face mask that blocks out most of the light around you. It will increase your ability to relax and fall asleep.
Exercise while your sit. Yes, you read that correctly! Taking big belly breaths is one way to strengthen your core as you sit, as well as the increased oxygen level will help you relax and/or focus more.
Simply squeeze your butt! When sitting, drive your heels into the ground. This should feel like your lower body is activating into one solid mass (glutes/ hamstrings/ calves), in addition to your abs getting toned.
Recommendation: perform this exercise over 30 second intervals, rest for 15 seconds and then repeat as many times as your want.
If, these tips for a better body while you travel seem easy, it's because they are. Honestly, it's the small things that compound to make the biggest difference. Imagine going an entire day with less or no brain fog - usually due to dehydration.
Or what about a sharper, more focused mind from no sugar spikes and the resulting downtime?
That would be an excellent day. Think about how much more you could get accomplished.
And remember, get outside more often!