Have you ever heard the quote, “Travel is the one thing you can buy that makes you richer.”? While exploring the world is invigorating, there’s only one drawback to soaring across time zones: Jet lag.
Jet lag can cause both physical and mental exhaustion, making it hard to stay productive the first few days you’re away. But after decades of globetrotting, I’ve done a lot of experimenting to figure out the best ways to beat the fatigue. So, here you have it — my top tips for kicking jet lag’s booty!
Time your sleep on the plane
A few days before a big flight, take a quick peek at your itinerary and figure out the local landing time. If you know you’re arriving in the morning then make sure to snooze on the plane so you’re refreshed and ready to take on the day ahead. You may need to use earplugs and an eye mask, but, trust me, you’ll be happy when you land! On the flip side, if you’re landing in the evening, sleeping on the plane can lead to a restless night and ruin your entire first day away.
Ditch the booze
While some people love to down a stiff drink to banish travel jitters, it’s best to avoid alcohol right before and during your flight. It can dehydrate your body (which just worsens jet lag symptoms) and mess with your sleep schedule. If you’re thinking to yourself, “But alcohol makes me sleepy”, remember this: While alcohol does, in fact, induce sleep, the quality of sleep will be lower.
Stay hydrated on the plane and when you land
Along with radical time changes and shifts in sleep patterns, dehydration is another component that leads to jet lag. Pack a cute water bottle in your purse and fill it up once you pass security. Keep swigging throughout your flight and even after you land. If you’re struggling to drink enough then try you can always eat your water! Munch on cucumber, celery, tomatoes, diced watermelon, blueberries, and other fresh foods that boast a high water content.
Get moving as soon as you land
One of my best tips for beating jet lag is to move your body. Exercise will get your blood flowing, endorphins pumping, and, according to researchers, help get your circadian rhythm back on track. When it comes to my personal travel schedule, lacing up my sneakers and hitting up the hotel’s gym is one of the first things I do after check-in. While it’s tempting to just lay down and rest, you’ll be happier in the long run!
Soak in some sun and breathe the fresh air
Airplane cabin pressure drops when you’re up in the air compared to when you’re at sea level. To put it simply, this means your brain may not be getting the same amount of oxygen. Research shows this can lead to lethargy and jet lag. So, when you land safely to your destination, carve out some outdoor time!