When you travel, many factors conspire against you. Your circadian rhythm often suffers, and you’re less likely to get a good night’s sleep.
Poor sleep may make you choose food and drink poorly the next day, ultimately leading to a snowball effect of sleepless nights, fatigue, overeating and/or lousy food choices, drinking too much, and facing January with a bad case of regret and tight jeans. Not in 2020!
Here are 10 tips stay balanced while traveling:
1. Plan Now. You know the adage: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” That means if you wait until your arrival at your destination to plan the way you eat, move, think, and supplement, you will miss out on the winning formula for success: planning for it. Find out where the yoga studios, barre classes, organic restaurants, and health food stores are located. Get a sibling or your travel companion to commit to getting up early each day with you to hike or go chi running.
2. Workout When You Arrive. This is an ideal golden rule to traveling. Whether you are staying with family or at a hotel, plan your flights so you can hop on a treadmill for 30 minutes at your chosen incline or another preferred form of exercise. There’s something awesome that blossoms when you arrive and move—it sets up a great metabolic tone for the rest of the trip.
3. Make a Green Shake. If you’re hotel bound, pack a mini blender (such as the Magic Bullet). Staying with family? Use their blender, even if it’s old school. Make sure you pack enough shake powder to make a daily shake whether you are on a Ketosis eating plan or between detox programs.
4. Walk 12,000 Steps Each Day. You’ve heard the 10,000-steps per day rule, right? We’re going to bump up the expectation by another 2,000 steps so that you can maintain your weight and feel agile.
5. Reset Melatonin. Whether you’re sleeping in an unfamiliar bed or traveling across time zones, melatonin levels can drop and make sleep more challenging. Instead of suppressing your own production of melatonin with screens at night and/or large doses of a melatonin supplement, do this instead.
Note from Dr. Sara Gottfried, MD: “Put yourself on a screen curfew four hours before bedtime (that’s 6 pm for most of you), so that melatonin can rise (screens suppress melatonin production in the pineal gland of the brain). If you need additional help, take 0.3 mg of melatonin (no, that’s not a typo: 0.3 mg) four hours before bed. As the level of melatonin gradually declines, your body will make more just in time for slumber.”
6. Add Fiber. Fiber is the secret of long-lived cultures and the flat bellies. You’ll be surprised at how well a shake with fiber added fills you up and promotes health.
7. Interrupt the Sitting Cycle. Of course there are times on an airplane when you must sit, but I have to actively resist the tendency to sit around on the couch and gab when I visit my family. When you pop to your feet every fifteen minutes—to stand, perform 10 heel lifts, stretch, or wash a few dishes, you tell your body that metabolism needs to stay high, bones need to stay strong, and fat needs to be burned, not conserved. You say “no” to diabetes and weight gain. Intrigued? Try the Sit Less Resolution!
8. Find Balance. Many of us have traditions during the holidays that are hard to resist. If alcohol and high carbohydrate foods are a part of yours, you are not alone! Help your liver out by increasing your consumption of detoxifying herbs and supplements, such as Vitamin D, Fiber, Probiotics, among many others!
Hopefully you’ll find these tips helpful during travel and put them into action in 2020!