Appears courtesy of Me Plus My Trainer.
I fancy myself to be a seasoned traveller. Whether it is for work or vacation, I find myself in airports on a very regular basis. It is extremely difficult to stay healthy and keep on track with your nutrition and fitness goals, BUT it is not impossible.
I have put together my top 10 Travel Tips to stay healthy and happy at the airport and on your flight:
- Keep a food journal. Even if you cannot do this on regular basis, try and at least do it while you travel. You can write it down or download an app (i.e. my fitness pal) for your smartphone. When you travel your eating patterns will likely be disrupted in some way and you will probably be eating out more whether it is at catered events or restaurant. A food journal or food app will help keep you on track.
- Plan on being hungry. Delayed flights, long work days will lead to one thing. Hunger. In order to avoid becoming “hangry” which is a combination on angry and hungry make sure you keep snacks with you. Please do NOT back hummus, nut butters or greek yogurt in your carry on bag. Airport security may ask you to throw them out, as they may be deemed “liquids”. Pack nuts, veggies, fruits (berries tend to get squished and for some reason bananas do not travel very week either) or bars such as Zing Bars or Larabars.
- If you’re prone to air sickness, ask for a window seat over the wing and if you are travelling across different time zones, remember to take those into considerations when taking prescription drugs or other medications.
- To overcome jet lag, try scheduling outdoor activities for the first few days at the new destination. Daylight can help your body adjust more quickly. Dehydration can make jet lag worse. Drink water or juices and avoid both caffeine and alcohol to stay hydrated.
- Speaking of hydration, do NOT count on your airline to provide you with enough water to keep you hydrated. You must take extra water with you. Although you cannot take water or liquids over 100ml through airport security you can take an empty water bottle that you can fill up at a fountain once you are inside the terminal or purchase a bottle of water.
- This may sound crazy but try not to get to the airport too early. If you arrive, check in and have tons of time to kill before your flight, this can be a crucial moment for many people. Extra time usually equals extra snacking. Whether you grab a calorie filled latte or nutrient lacking, fried foods from a restaurant or a “on the go” snack from one of the many stores. Try an plan enough time so you can get comfortably to your gate so you can fill up your water and be ready to board. If you are early, don’t just sit at your gate. Walk around the airport to burn extra calories and keep yourself occupied.
- You should NEVER utter these words “I will just buy something on the plane”. This will be the worst idea you’ve had all day. Airplane food is prepacked, nutrient lacking and well let’s face it, yucky. Bring your own snacks or seek out food you can buy at the airport to bring the plane with you. I have been known to bring wraps, salads, protein shakes, fruit, nuts etc in my purse. You will be the smartest person on the plane.
- The air you breathe in the airplane cabin is 50% fresh from outside the aircraft and 50% recycled. The use of outside air results in humidity levels of less than 20%. The mild discomfort that may be caused by low humidity can be prevented by drinking reasonable amounts of water and juice (8 ounces for each hour of flight), avoiding alcohol and caffeine, wearing eyeglasses (instead of contacts), and using skin moisturizer.
- Compression socks or stockings can help relieve foot-related discomforts caused by sitting for long periods of time such as being on an airplane. They will help prevent swollen ankles and tired legs that usually accompany a long flight. THESE compression socks from Lululemon are currently on my wish list.
- I saved the best for last. Check in for your flight the day before to ensure you have a seat that is most comfortable for you. For example is you have long legs, try to score an emergency exit isle which often boasts extra leg room. If you plan to sleep it is much easier to do so with a window seat and a neck pillow. Have your boarding pass emailed to your smartphone to help ease the travel process and speed up check in. Put a reminder in your phone to go off exactly 24 hours before your flight so you can hop online and check in to reserve the seat of your choice on the plane.
I hope these tips help you to travel a little healthier and a lot happier.