Travel Wellness

As much as I love to visit beautiful and exciting places, I most certainly do not enjoy the travel fatigue and discomfort that comes with it. I don’t know about you, but one of my biggest concerns about traveling is getting sick or my back going out.   Unless you are one of the lucky ones and travel first class in the luxury seats, the airlines I travel on usually offer some of the most uncomfortable seating out there. *COVID19: The airlines have taken considerable measures to ensure cleanliness and safety of all who fly during these challenging times of Covid. Please visit the appropriate airline to learn protocols and safety measures of the company you chose to fly with.

Flight Duration

Flying can take a significant toll on your body. As a result of the air pressure changes alone, it can create the build up of gas in the body. Then consider the cramped surroundings, long sitting, and lack of movement can cause the build up of blood in the legs. As a result, this can possibly bring the onset of other health related issues. Oh, let’s not forget about dehydration as airlines are now offering less and less complimentary beverages and food.

The Cabin

I mention cramped surroundings and small seating areas; the airlines continue to strive for improving profit margins, their customer service is on the decline. Surely, you’ve seen the most recent incidents as well with respect to customers being dragged down the isle on the plane, and the death of one passenger’s dog.

The Cabin of inside an airplane.

The cabin environment and experience that the airlines have created today is one that is conducive to thriving viruses (Pre Covid). They are ones that you are more susceptible to viruses and airborne infections. Providing less oxygen and moisture, and more contamination; it’s a recipe for illnesses no doubt. With respect to airline travel; according to telegraph.co.uk, you are nearly 100 times more likely to get sick. telegraph.co.uk. *COVID19: Airlines today have made significant changes to their policy protocols with respect to cleanliness and safety for all.

Germs

The areas on the plane that you may not think matter when touching can be very highly contaminated with germs and bacteria. Areas such as the button on the tray table, the arm rest, seat pockets, and window shades can contain a bacteria that survive up to 96 hours.

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The contaminated surfaces on the plane are not the only thing you should be concerned about. On board water served on the airplane can also be contaminated with bacteria. So now that I’ve got you frustrated and possibly not enthused about traveling again, there are several ways to improve your travel experience and how you feel while traveling. Here are a few ideas that I practice in preparation for my travel:

Travel Tips For Wellness

Bring antibacterial hand gel. I use this on my hands every time I hear someone cough on the plane, and prior to eating any food. *COVID19: I bring sanitizer hand wipes to wipe down my entire seat, arm rests, food tray and handle.

A. Stay hydrated. Bring your own water bottle. I fill my bottle up after the security line and many airports actually have the filtered option at the drinking fountain – where you can fill your own bottle with filtered water.

B. Bring your own packed lunch or food. I pack a turkey sandwich or almond butter sandwich. Tortilla chips, almonds or walnuts, banana or apple. (It is more challenging with food sensitivities, but I am able to manage).

C. Use saline nose spray to keep moisture throughout your nasal cavity. To reduce risk of airborne illnesses.

D. Dress comfortable and wear comfortable shoes for example, sneakers. Another bad idea is to wear nylons or panty hose as they can be a fire hazard. However, some argue that it was recommended in the past that Airline staff wear hosiery as it reduces blood clots from occurring.  stockingshq.com

E. So, with all these challenges to overcome as I board my next airline, I have a few things that I do to combat these risks and do my best to be prepared and ready to travel.

Fitness During Flight

One of the airlines has launched a wellness video series as part of on-board flight entertainment. Hawaiian Airlines offers these free videos for viewing during flight to help you stay well and experience a better flight so you can stay healthy at your destination.

hawaiianairlines.com/OlaPonoWellness

The best exercises and breathing techniques for pre-flight, in-flight, and after flight travel.

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Prepare for Pre-flight:   Deep Breathing

  • Stand tall * March in place:
    • Keep in control and continue for at least 30 seconds.
  • Heel raises: Perform this movement at a slow pace then hold for 5 seconds at the top, then slowly lower your heel back to the floor. Repeat and do at least 10 reps.
  • Standing twist * swing your arms around you back and forth.

 In-Flight:

While sitting:

  • Clinch and release your waist area.
  • Squeeze and release your glutes.
  • Sit tall and straight * deep breathing in and out
  • Shoulders rolls * gently roll shoulders forward, then back. Raise your arms as well.
  • Flexing your feet * raise feet and rotate in circles.
  • Inner / outer thigh * place flat hands on each side of inner thigh and hold while pushing your thighs inward as your hands force against. Then repeat with hands outside of each thigh and flex your thighs outward against your hands as they hold steady. Repeat.

Standing:

  • Walking towards the bathroom. (Get up and walk if possible every 20 minutes).
  • While waiting for the bathroom, you can march in place, flex and stretch your feet, or slowly do standing twists.

After flight:

Continue to keep your body in motion once you have landed, and walk wherever you can. Once you have arrived at your destination, here are some stretches and movements that will help get the blood moving throughout your muscles and body again. Take a look at Wainani Arnold, Wainani Wellness Center, (www.wainaniwellness.com).

In summary, even though you may not end up being one of the lucky passengers flying in the comfortable luxury of first class, your flying experience doesn’t have to be so bad. By planning, preparing, and implementing these healthy stretches, movements, and breathing techniques, your airline flight time can actually be part of the overall positive experience of your entire trip. I know my travel experience has improved immensely as a result of practicing these techniques and I’ve avoided getting sick numerous times, especially traveling during the winter months.

Sources:

hawaiianairlines.com/OlaPonoWellness
Telegraph.co.uk
stockingshq.com/blog
wainaniwellness.com

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The many reasons to include Epsom Salt Baths to your fit lifestyle today. Here are a few.

The healthy benefits of taking Epsom salt baths are tremendous. I just can’t say enough positive things about Epsom salt. And actually, it is not really a salt as it is a naturally occurring mineral compound of magnesium and sulfer. Epsom salt is not only a great remedy for sore aching muscles and ailments, but is also used for many household and beauty uses.

You can also add a cup of Epsom salt in a quart of cold water to make a compress and apply with a washcloth to relieve mild sunburn, mosquito bites, and bee stings. I’ve also put a couple tablespoons of Epsom salt to my outdoor plants and flowers to add some healthy supplemental nutrients to them.

But plants and gardens aren’t the only beneficiaries of Epsom salt. It helps ease stress and also relaxes the body. As well, it relieves pain and muscle cramps, reduces stiffness and soreness in joints . As described in seasalt.com studies show that Epsom salt can help regulate electrolytes in your body, ensuring proper function of muscles, nerves, and enzymes. It also mentions that proper levels of magnesium and sulfate increase the effectiveness of insulin in the body and can help lower the risk or severity of diabetes.

Maintaining proper levels of magnesium in the body also can provide some great sleep! The amount of people with magnesium deficiencies is significant. According to pubmed.gov, nearly half (48%) of the US population consumed less than the required amount of magnesium from food in 2005-2006, and the figure was down from 56% in 2001-2002. Full article:

So, if you are one of those people who experience limited sleep, you may want to try the warm Epsom salt baths, as well as ingesting foods that contain higher levels of magnesium like greens, nuts, raisins, and flaxseeds.  Read complete article here:

Sources:
seasalt.com
pubmed.gov (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22364157)
epsomsaltcouncil.org

Loving Where You Live. Florida. Fitlifeandtravel.com
Health and Loving Where You Live

UPDATED: Since we are all rediscovering home at this time due to the 2020 coronavirus pandemic, I think you may find this article interesting and you may remind yourself that home may actually be where your heart is.

Do you find yourself unhappy and continually complaining about everything at this point in your life? Have you ever considered your surroundings or where you live might be affecting your attitude? Occasionally, I find myself complaining about the weather, nasty neighbors, noise pollution, this is what I went through growing up in one of the coldest states in America (North Dakota). There are studies showing that health and loving where you live are possibly connected.

Change of Seasons

Every year, I used to dread the winter season that seem to come too quick. I knew that by August 1ST, leaves on the trees began to turn yellow in color. In my mind, this means it is the end of my precious beloved Summer. And the beginning of life indoors; wearing several layers of clothing, and doing very little physical activity.

Change of Seasons. Loving Where You Live. Fitlifeandtravel.com
Change of Seasons

There are several people who love fall and wintertime. There is so much to do and it can be extraordinarily beautiful. For example, snow capped mountains, or a sunset on a flowing creek surrounded by snow. Winter season reminds me of my childhood mostly, which is wonderful.

What Makes You Happy

As an adult, I do prefer to live in areas with warmer climates. Life seems so much easier in warm comfortable climates. I find myself so much happier, more active, and enjoying my daily life more in the Spring and Summer seasons. But there are many people who love the change of seasons as well. There are plenty of folks who love the change of seasons. Although my entire family lives in colder weather states, I will always choose warm weather living.

I am discovering however, as I grow older, the more I appreciate the seasons. I actually love the Fall season. I enjoy seeing the colors of yellow, red, and orange on the trees. The crisp air also brings a sense of new beginnings and excitement for what the future holds.

Happiness = Healthy

This begs the question, do you love the place where you live? Does being happy contribute to improved or better health? There has been many studies done on these very questions. Is loving where you live connected to being physically healthier? According to Livescience.com, a gallup poll says that people satisfied with their community are physically healthier. And continues to say that a survey can’t draw a causal link between community and individual health, but research suggests the two are linked.   Read complete article here:

You may also want to put high regards to ‘community’ when choosing where to live. During tough times or tragic events, the folks in your community can really be strong support. We recently moved to a new community in Florida, and the folks here have been so gracious, friendly, and very welcoming. It truly does give you a sense of safety, security, and a loving home.

Final Thoughts

The next time you find yourself feeling down or unhappy, you might consider your environment and surroundings. You might also take the time to appreciate where you are. Find the beauty of the place you are right now. Rediscover your home and community, especially during the tough times. But if you are planning a move, make sure to think about the things that make YOU happy. Including climate and weather as well as community!

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Thank you for visiting! Fitlifeandtravel is a lifestyle blog that has been inspiring us to explore national parks, unique hiking trails, hidden waterfalls, and seeking out stunning cliffs and canyons! And of course, some of our adventures require a bit higher fitness level so we incorporate lots of fitness into our lives to train for these trips! Military veteran turned adventurer traveler blogger!

We’ve lived on both coasts surrounded by some incredible beauty and culture, but wanted to see more, do more, and explore more of our beautiful lands in America. So hold on tight, there will be more epic adventure, challenging hiking trails and caves, and many more stories about spectacular sunsets behind mountains and upon oceans!

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About Shannon

I was born and raised in the beautiful state of North Dakota; having many dreams and curiosities about what the real world was really like out there. The only reference I had about the real world was through television. I joined the military a year after high school and was stationed in Washington state, California, and deploying to the middle of the Indian Ocean.

After the military, I ended up working for a successful businessman for 22 years, and after a life-changing event in early 2017, I wanted my husband and I to share more life experiences together. So, now we are more in love with adventure, nature, seeing new places, and experiencing unique things together. We are also becoming photographers of life! Our mission is to maximize life! You can find me most on Twitter.

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Military Deployment overseas*Gulf War veteran

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