Many of us have an ‘all or none’ mentality when it comes to wellness, which is what often leads to yo-yo dieting, intense fitness class trials that sometimes lead to injury, and those week-long yoga retreats followed by yet another year without yoga or meditation. To continue to feel good in mind and body, wellness should always be in our thoughts. When traveling, whether it is for work or pleasure, we are pulled from our normal place and our usual routine. A sprinkling of good wellness habits can be an invigorating and positive complement to your trip.
Eat intentionally - While traveling we eat out more than usual, which usually leads to overeating. In addition to GI distress, this can lead to lack of energy and motivation. Try to make a plan for eating. Think of one healthy habit you can incorporate into each day, such as eating three servings of fruits and veggies, or having at least one salad. If you are going to eat a rich meal, enjoy it. Savor it by eating slowly. Try to stop when you are full; you will eat again tomorrow.
Exercise enjoyably - While exercise may not be at the top of the to-do list for those who are traveling, there are many fun ways to sneak activity into your day while you are away. Take the stairs instead of the escalator. Walk everywhere that you can. Walking around new areas can be a lot of fun, especially if you are in no hurry. Try something new, like a rock climbing gym, kayaking or an outdoor yoga class. If you’re on vacation, bicycle tours, walking food tours and sightseeing by foot are some other ways to get moving.
Relax fully - Whether you are traveling for vacation, work or to see family, make some time to relax, not just your body, but also your mind. Put down the computer/tablet/smartphone and truly disconnect. Have some hot tea, practice deep breathing, think some positive thoughts, stretch, find your ‘zen’ place. This is a great way to recharge mentally.
Bottom Line: The next time you travel, try to eat intentionally, exercise enjoyably and relax fully into your day. This will help you feel good both inside and out and will continue your wellness journey no matter where you are.
Written by: Michelle Abbey, Wellness Workdays Dietetic Intern