Keeping Energy Up When Traveling

musings, outdoors, Travel

If anything most people can agree on, it’s that traveling is tiring. No matter how much fun someone is having or the sleep you get, the act of visiting new places is a suck on energy. Sometimes it’s jet lag or the inability to sleep. Other times it’s a chock full schedule that leaves everyone dragging.

The problem with being tired while traveling is that you don’t enjoy the experience. You may also miss vital information and details that could make a serious difference to your enjoyment or safety. If you are tired while going through security at an airport, then you may leave something behind. If you don’t pay attention while driving, you could easily make a mistake. So, while we all run on fumes at times, it’s always better to be well rested for adventuring.

Here are some of my 10 tips to keeping you, and your family, rested, safe, and happy.

  1. Sleep on your flights
    • Sleep on a flight is especially important if you are doing a red eye or transcontinental flight. Meaning, if you can at least nap your day in the next place will be MUCH better than not. I have a terrible time sleeping on flights, but I have learned a few tricks.
    • Take melatonin for long flights. Or another OTC sleep aid to help you relax
    • Follow a “bedtime” routine as much as possible. This is extremely helpful with kids.
    • Bring/wear something cozy to help you relax. Maybe a blanket, leggings, slip off shoes, and eye mask.
    • Bring ear buds/headphones to you can drown out others, especially fussy kids.
  2. Make a routine
    • Whether you are on a cruise, a road trip, or backpacking, making a routine for the day to day will help. This will mean you are getting enough sleep, planning out your days, and taking much needed down town. Much like at home, your body and brain need a break. Bring a book or laptop for some other stimuli.
    • Kids especially need this when on the road. If you can, stay as close to the schedule at home. The structure prevents meltdowns and encourages happy kids. ALWAYS plan time for breaks.
  3. Find you drug of choice.
    • There are times that you will need caffeine no matter what you do. Meaning, I think it’s healthy to track down a coffee/tea/shot of espresso anytime you need it.
  4. Limit alcohol
    • We all love a little PAR-TAY in time away, but late nights and alcohol drain the system. If you are drinking, allow for down time, eat with drinks, and guzzle water, especially at higher altitudes (Denver).
  5. Eat healthy
    • When I’m super tired the first thing that happens is I get sick. However, if I eat healthy, take vitamins, and get sleep I tend to avoid illness. If you eat poorly it’s likely your immune system won’t have the ability to fight a small or large bug.
  6. Vacation from the vacation
    • I can’t stress enough, give yourself down time on a trip. Maybe mornings to sleep in, or a day of no plans. Even a day in between vacation and work can do wonders.
    • If you can, take an earlier flight and get home mid afternoon, this will help with jetlag and stress immensely. If you can get home and get back into a routine, this will help with your exhaustion.
  7. Request what you need
    • Staying at nicer hotels (3*+) means you can get more with your money (most the time), and that means you have the right to ask for what you want. Ask for quiet rooms, rooms on higher floors, or an upgrade if you think they can accommodate. 
    • Having hotel rewards (which are free) means you get a “status” at most places. If you spend more/stay more, you will get more notice, but even just having a basic option means things like Wi-Fi and free upgrades are much easier. 
  8. Take a comfort item
    • I take my sad down pillow when I can when I travel. It helps me relax and enjoy my sleep more. This could be a blanket, essential oils, or even a stuffed animal, whatever works for you, or your kiddos
  9. White Noise REALLY helps
    • It sounds like it’s almost too good to be true, but white noise really does help my husband and I sleep. I make sure we bring our ALEXA or have some downloaded nature sounds or Spotify as needed.
  10. Call loved ones
    • My husband and I call each other every night when we are apart. It’s something we have done since we started dating my first year of college. At the time we lived between 1 and 4 hours apart, so we maybe saw each other once a week. At other times I have been in Europe for one to two and a half months, and every call was worth the charges just to share our affection. This helps feel like we have a routine, like at home, and rest our minds over missing each other. 

HAPPY TRAVELS….and sleeping!

Recharge Your Batteries

musings

There are times when I think I might be solar powered. Which instead of solar, let’s try rain and clouds.

I say this because there are times where I really need a break. A break from technology. A break from scrolling on Facebook. A break from news. A break from drama. A break from friends. A break from my family.

I have always considered myself an extrovert, but the older I get, the more I realize that I need time to myself and that I in fact really enjoy it. While I love parties, meeting people, traveling, seeing new things. There are days when I just need to be a couch potato. Or I need to nap half the day. Or I need to clean when no one is around and in my way. Some of it is just quirks about myself and my needs. But REALLY I NEED time to myself. Time to be in my own head. Time to create something, clean something, paint something, write…. time.

For years I thought I needed others to fill my voids, to fill the needs I had. But the truth was a deeper need to have conversations with myself. My introvert husband helped with this transition and I have never looked back.

The thing is, when I was a child I lived in a house of seven people. The house was about 1,500 square feet, not particularly small, but with seven people, it got cozy. In that seven were my parents, my grandparent’s on my dad’s size, myself and my two younger sisters. I shared a room with my sisters. In fact, my two sister’s shared a double bed for many years. Some of this was poverty and cohabitation, and not being able to afford our own place (my nuclear family). As the years progressed my grandparent’s began having serious health issues that meant someone needed to be there as much as possible.

While we were the main people that lived in the house, my dad’s family often came to visit. Meaning at any particular holiday 14+ people could be staying in the house. This meant more people in my room, sometimes sleeping in my parents room. Sometimes it meant sleeping in a tent in the backyard.

Needless to say, I was never alone much. As a child such things don’t seem abnormal, as it is all you know. As an adult, you start to really pick at the scars certain things left behind. Being crammed in one house meant that I never truly learned to thrive on my own, and it also meant I never had space to feel truly free. (This is not to pick on my upbringing, but rather an observation.)

In college I moved into my own studio apartment, and my first year of college was a lonely one. While I was dating Ryan (my now husband) we were doing long distance (60 miles apart approximately). Then on top of that I had a year of losses of friends and family that left me facing a lot of demons.

When I moved in with Ryan I grasped at time together as hoping to fill the voids left where my pain had been. We fought a lot, because he needed alone time, I needed attention.

At some point I realized that I also should try alone time, and I realized it was what I needed. At times it has been meditation. At times it has been reading. At times it has simply been laying in bed playing a game on my phone. Other times I walk eight miles, to feel more alive. And GOD does it feel good. I love my alone time now. I love not having to talk to someone. I love not needing to put energy into something. I love the rest that I can create.

At times this means I am not always keeping up with my art and blog. For that I cringe, but for my all around health, I embrace is.

Happy Travels….or rest days ❤