It’s officially flu season, and it will soon be — for many people, anyway — holiday travel season. You know what that means, right? Jet lag, sleep deprivation, poorly ventilated vehicles, not eating as well, and exposure to all manner of other people’s germs. Just a few of our least-favorite things.
All of these things can work against you to compromise your immunity and ruin one of the best times of year. But getting sick doesn’t have to be inevitable in the fall and winter, thankfully.
Ryan and I leave soon for a trip to Germany, so we’ve been thinking long and hard about ways to make sure we enjoy good health while there. Here are a few healthy travel tips we have come up with to bolster our immunity right now and while we’re trotting around the globe.
Step Up Your Healthy Routine NOW
The weeks leading up to your trip are critical, and not the time to be compromising your health. It’s important right now to eat, exercise and sleep well.
Eat Well: Make sure you’re eating a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruit, vegetables and protein. Foods such as garlic, onions, tea and chicken soup (or any soup made with bone broth) are loaded with nutrients that can help combat common bacteria and viruses. Just as important as what you do eat, is what you don’t. We have cut alcohol almost entirely out of our diet for the month leading up to our trip.
Exercise: It’s tempting to slack off on the workouts in the last few days before leaving town if you know you’re not going to be working out as much, if at all (we’ll get to that!) while you’re out of town. But keeping a regular exercise routine not only provides an overall boost to your immune system, it also reduces your stress hormone levels. We all know that traveling increases your stress levels, and stress wreaks havoc on your health, so do what you can to minimize that travel stress.
Sleep: Sleep is another one that often goes by the wayside for us when we’re trying to cram in those last to-do’s before we head out of town. But cheating yourself out of your rest now is only going to have a compounding effect on your health once you’re on the road or in the air. Get a solid seven hours of sleep per night in the week leading up to your trip.
Stock Up on Healthy Snacks
Eating a healthy diet is by far the biggest challenge when we’re traveling somewhere new. And if we allow ourselves to get hangry before scoping out the options in our destination, we often end up compromising and going for what’s convenient instead of what will fuel us best.
That’s why we like to stock up on some good, clean snacks that we know will take the edge off and buy us some time when we’re looking for a healthy place to eat. Here are some of our favorites that we’re packing on this trip:
- Mamma Chia Chia Squeeze — Apple Cinnamon
- EPIC Bars — Beef Apple and Uncured Bacon, and Habanero Cherry Beef
- Justin’s Nut Butter packets — Classic Almond Butter
- Fresh fruit — Apples, oranges and other travel-friendly fruits
- Vitamins: C, B-Complex, Ginger and Echinacea are our favorites
Put Workouts on your Itinerary
Chances are you’re going to be busy and stressed out when you’re traveling. But taking a half-hour or so each day to exercise can save you lots of time in the long run by preventing an illness that could knock you off your feet for multiple days. Plan out a few workouts you can do in your hotel room, find some nearby trails to run, or scope out a cool gym in your destination city and drop in for a workout.
Don’t Forget your Water Bottle
Drinking water is always important, but never more so than when traveling, so keep your water bottle close. And don’t forget to dump the contents before going through a TSA checkpoint.