With all these factors, we understand that your stress and mental health can sometimes take a beating. That’s why we’re here to show you the basics of what you can do to take advantage of those days off and any down-time you may come across. After all, if you aren’t in tip-top shape, how can you properly care for those in need? These tips are fun, simple and most importantly…you can do them anywhere.
Get to Sweatin’
Before you even start the car of board that train to travel to your next assignment, it’s a great idea to start the process off right by getting in a quick workout. We’re not talking about weights and intense cardio here (unless that’s what you prefer). But, even a mile run or quick yoga session an hour before you hit the road can help you get started on the right foot.
Even the smallest bit of exercise can increase endorphins, reduce stress, and ward off that restless nervous energy you may have before headed to a new town. Not to mention, fitting a workout into your schedule every now and then can help you in the future and make other travel experiences a little less chaotic. Researchers have even found that those who get regular exercise were 25% less likely to develop depression or an anxiety disorder.
- A Week Before: Take a boot camp to jumpstart your progress (and so you can work through soreness).
- Three Days Before: Try 30 minutes of weight training to work arms and legs (and you can avoid walking while in the car for a few hours).
- Two Days Before: Pack in a yoga sessions to stretch out those kinks and get your body prepared. (Bonus points for hot yoga)!
- The Morning Of: Do some light planks, situps and pushups to get your metabolism up (you know you’ll grab at least ONE bag of Doritos on the road!)
- During the trip: Download the 7-minute Workout App and grab a session in the airport lounge, outside at a rest stop and when you reach your destination.
We all love our tunes, and believe it or not, listening to music helps us relax and take our minds off the worries at hand. In fact, believe it or not, a scientist by the name of Dr. David Lewis-Hodgson believes he may have created the best song for relieving stress and reducing anxiety. His studies have proven that participates experienced a 65% reduction in overall anxiety, and a 35% reduction in their usual physiological resting rates. This means they were calmer and more relaxed while listening to the song.
- A Week Before: Look up songs about your new state, city or region. Headed to Denver? How about Rocky Mountain High?
- Three Days Before: Ask friends and family to contribute songs they love via facebook or twitter (or even Spotify!)
- Two Days Before: Make a few playlists to match your anticipated moods. (Energy Mix, Driving songs, Don’t Fall Asleep, Exploring the Town and Missing Friends are all great ones)!
- One Day Before: Download any albums from Spotify or bookmark stations on Pandora. Even if you’re going old school, make sure you can access your music when you have no service.
- During the trip: Jam out! But don’t futz with your phone and make yourself and other unsafe on the road.
Planning a schedule for when you arrive, what you will need, and what has to be done will help keep you in check, organized, and stress free. Here are a few additional things you can do to make sure you are as prepared as possible:
- Ensure that you have the proper paperwork, visa, vaccinations, license and any other necessity in advance. Bonus: Take pictures of these documents in store them in an evernote you can access on your phone in case of loss or theft.
- Be sure your passport is current. Also, if the passport is close to expiring, double check that your destination doesn’t reject passports within six months of expiration. It’s also useful to have this in case your license is lost or stolen.
- Know at least a little about the place you are visiting, especially if you might experience major cultural and linguistic differences. Apps like TripAdvisor, Yelp, Foursquare and more can help you get restaurant recommendations, shopping favorites or outdoor places to explore.
- Get your living situated all settled before you end up on the road. Then, keep a copy of the information and location with you. Of course, when you work with Triage you don’t have to worry about it at all.
- Check in to your flight online the day before the flight and leave extra time at the airport to get through security.