It’s so easy to fall into unhealthy habits when you travel. Heavy restaurant meals, little scheduled exercise, strange sleeping arrangements and late nights exploring new towns can lead to feeling fairly rundown.
To keep your immune system in tip-top shape (and to keep from returning home five pounds heavier), it’s important to maintain your at-home healthy habits even when you are on the road. Consider these six tips to do just that:
1. Wash your hands a lot. One of the most important ways to reduce infectious disease transmission is to wash your hands carefully and frequently with soap and water. Carrying hand-sanitizer gel with alcohol will help stop common cold germs too. Do not handle the knobs on restrooms doors. Grab a dry towel to use between your hand and the knob or a sleeve as a last resort!
2. Stay hydrated. Low humidity on airplanes may not cause internal dehydration but the eyes and skin surely get dry. Ask the flight attendant for water as often as you can. Also you might consider traveling with a reusable water bottle. Fill it once you pass through security at the airport. After your flight, the reusable bottle will be good for your trip. Just make sure you are drinking clean water.
3. Pack healthy snacks. In your carry on, bring an apple, dried fruit, protein bars, peanut butter crackers or nuts, so you will not feel the need to make a purchase at one of those mega-cinnamon roll stands in the airport. Snacks are also good to have handy while you are traveling on the ground, that way you may not need to stop for lunch.
4. Make smart choices at restaurants. If you eat healthy meals at home, you can eat healthy on the go. First, skip the bread basket and order lean meats and vegetables. With salads, you may need to be careful as they may be washing with local water. My rules: if you can not peel it; do not eat it. If it is not bottled; do not drink it. And if it is not boiled do not eat it.
5. Work out at your hotel or cruise-ship fitness center. If you have a choice among hotels, find one with exercise equipment or a pool for swimming. Nearly every cruise ship these days has a fitness center or a track on an outdoor deck. Doing simple push-ups squats and lunges in your room, scouring the television listings for a cable yoga class, or take a jog around your hotel neighborhood. Heck, even a walk on the beach is good for you!
6. Get good shut-eye. This is easier said than done, especially if you want to see and do everything on vacation! Do your best to sleep 8 hourss so you can have loads of energy for your days full of sightseeing. If you stayed up late, do not hesitate to sleep in a morning or two. This is a vacation you are experiencing after all, not a final exam!