This season’s low-cost airfares means that a summer getaway to Europe, Asia, or some dreamy faraway land are more affordable than ever. But with long-haul flights also comes jet lag, which can haunt even the most seasoned traveler for days on end. Trust us, there is nothing worse than fighting off exhaustion at the start of an exciting trip, so before you take off, check out our top 10 tips for reducing jet lag and stepping into your destination on the right foot. Here we go!
Begin adapting to the difference in the time zone a few days before your flight. If you’re flying from the east coast to the west coast, train yourself to go to sleep a little bit later each night. If you’re flying to Europe, get into bed a bit earlier than you normally would and ease into a restful night’s sleep with a meditation or relaxation app such as Insight Timer. These small adjustments can help your body adapt to the change more quickly.
A lot of people choose not to drink water on a flight because they don’t want to get up for the bathroom. Dehydration is one of the key causes of jet lag and can put your body in a tailspin for days after you land. So get used to those bathroom breaks and keep plenty of fluids in you.
Watch your liquor consumption. Not only is alcohol dehydrating, a few too many bevies from the cocktail cart could leave you with a hangover that will most definitely contribute to feeling awful at your destination. Remember, flying can be tough on the body, so don’t make it more difficult than it has to be.
We all love using a flight to catch up on the newest movies or indulge in a guilt-free series binge. Unfortunately, the blue-spectrum light that emits from in-flight TV screens and handheld tablets actually acts as a brain activator and can cause a delay in your sleep. If you’re on a long-haul flight, try to turn off any electronic devices an hour before you want to rest your head.
Use the plane time to relax, and get some sleep. Planes aren’t the comfiest spot for a slumber, but there’s nothing worse than landing and feeling exhausted. Take every opportunity to get some shuteye, even if it’s just an hour here or there.
Make your time on a flight as comfortable as possible. Wear baggy, breathable clothing, or pack a pair of yoga pants to change into. An eye mask, neck pillow, ear plugs, and a blanket or shawl will all help you to get cozy and allow your body to relax.
Try to mimic your evening routine on your flight. An airplane bathroom isn’t the most glamorous of places, but it does the job. Use the facilities to wash your hands and face and brush your teeth. We also love using a facial mask on a long haul flight. It may look a bit funny, but it’s a great way to replenish and rehydrate your skin and it tells your brain that it’s chill time.
If have an evening landing time, don’t drink coffee or caffeinated beverages on the plane. You may want to stay awake in-flight so you can sleep when you land, but caffeine takes a long time to wear off and could disrupt your rest when you get to your destination.
After you land, make sure you do something to boost your endorphins as soon as possible. A workout in the hotel gym, a short jog, or even a visit to the steam room or sauna will wake up your internal organs, get your blood pumping and increase your circulation, which all contribute to reducing jet lag.
On your first day, do you best to stay awake as late as possible, even if it’s an early 8pm local bedtime. If you absolutely must sleep during the day, take a short nap, but no longer than 45 minutes. Otherwise, it will be much tougher to adjust to your new nighttime routine.
Are you a frequent flyer? What are your favorite health tips for getting in the zone and arriving refreshed and relaxed at your destination? Visitors to New York love coming to Body by Brooklyn for a session in our steam room, saunas, hot tub and cold plunge pool. It’s a great way to wake up the body and get set for an amazing adventure in the Big Apple. Check out all our specials here and we’ll see you at the spa!