I just returned home from a weekend away visiting some of Ben’s family in Milwaukee for Passover. This little weekend trip, although short and fairly stress-free, got me thinking about travel in general and just how long it has taken me in life to figure out how to travel well and travel smart. I mean, I’m still a work in progress, but I have come a long way and those days of missing flights and packing terribly are….pretty much…behind me.
I feel like now, finally, I can be confident in my packing and planning skills and usually won’t be caught running through the terminal, bags flying everywhere, skating through the gate right before the doors close…usually 😉 I do have my moments though!
The more prepared I am, the less chance I have at the above tornado situation. Being prepared for me is more than just being packed ahead of time- it goes as far as the morning/day of the flight plan..and even the day before.
Travel can be stressful, and traveling healthfully can be a challenge….but here are my top tips to make travel easier, healthier and stress-free!
- Keep A “Travel Kit” For Easy Grab And Go When Packing
I have a couple plastic travel bags that I fill with airplane-approved sizes of my favorite products so when it comes time to pack, it’s all ready to go and I don’t have to scramble around trying to figure out how to put my face lotion into a smaller container (I’ve done this too many times!). In these bags I have: toothpaste, toothbrush, face lotion, face wash, shampoo, conditioner, dry shampoo, hair product, eye cream, sunscreen, deodorant, nail polish remover pads, Q-tips and a razor. For specialty products that I don’t have two of, I’ll just create a small travel size bottle of it, but I do this ahead of time. This is seriously a life saver. It’s all in one place and you don’t even have to think about it! Then all I have to do is pack up a few makeup supplies in another bag and I am good to go! For makeup, I keep it simple with foundation, concealer, mascara, eyelash curler, eye liner pencil, bronzer and brow gel- I often use my bronzer as eyeshadow anyway- so that way I don’t have to pack extra stuff.
- Get Sleep and Exercise Before Traveling.
The night before a trip- as difficult as it may be- TRY to get as much sleep as possible. Getting a good night sleep will help you feel more rested, balanced and more at peace when you travel. Few things are worse than jet lag and a lack-of-sleep headache! If my flight is later in the day, I always try to make time for a workout class or a run before I head to the airport. Getting my body moving and my muscles firing makes me feel much better when I travel. We sit for such long periods of time on airplanes, so getting moving before makes me feel more relaxed. If you’re flight is first thing in the morning, get in a workout the afternoon or early evening of the day before. Another thing I’ll do at the airport, if I have time to kill: I will walk through the terminals…looking at shops etc. This way, I am keeping my legs moving, logging some miles and avoiding more sedentary sitting time. I also always get up from my seat a few times during the flight to stretch my legs and get my blood moving- I suggest you do the same!!
- Come Prepared With An Arsenal Of Fresh, Healthy Snacks.
I ALWAYS pack my own snacks and meals. Although airport fare is getting healthier- I still don’t 100% trust I will be able to get something healthy and satisfying…it’s just too risky! So here are examples of what I pack as snacks in plastic ziplocks: fresh grapes, baby carrots, pretzel shells, raw almonds, organic sliced turkey “rolls” (rolled up in romain lettuce leaves), protein bars and fresh blueberries. These are easy foods to transport. I will also often pick up a salad at Whole Foods or another easy to-go place before the flight and eat it on the plane so I am not tempted to chow down on the less than healthy airport meal options. It takes planning and a little more space in your bag, but it is well worth it- your tummy will thank you! Bottom line: if you bring healthy snacks and meals, you’ll be more satisfied and you won’t have to settle for some airport garbage on a bun.
- Pack A Portable Water Bottle To Fill Up While Traveling
Avoid buying those pricey airport bottles of water! Seriously where do they think they get off charging so much $$ for WATER?! Drives me crazy! If you bring your own bottle, you save money and you can make sure you’re always staying hydrated. Plus, once you get to your destination, you can continue this hydration trend all trip long!
- BRING HAND SANITIZER AND DON’T TOUCH NOTHIN!
Well, you have to touch things…but when you do, sanitize after. I’m not saying to be a total freak about it, but just be mindful. You’re stuck in a very small space with so many people for hours…it’s an easy place to catch something. In fact- you’re tray table…the place you eat your food from, put your laptop on, play cards on…is the more germ covered place on an airplane! YIKES! It’s a smart idea to wipe it down with some sanitizer on a napkin before using it.
- Don’t Overdo It On The Adult Beverages
Hey, flying is often boring, stressful and anxiety-inducing… totally get it. Its tempting to order a glass of wine or two to take the edge off, but think twice next time. Your body dehydrates while in flight, and drinking alcohol ON TOP of that, will only leave you feeling super shitty post flight. Save the end of day drink until you get to your destination and focus on staying healthy and hydrated while in the sky. You’ll thank yourself for it!