Summer is in full swing and we're all hitting the road, rails, or skies for a getaway. Whether you're visiting family and friends, escaping to get some rest and relaxation, or finding a new adventure, here are 5 tips to stay pain free during your travels.
1) Stretch - if you're planning to be sitting for an extended period (in a car, on a plane, train, etc.), it is crucial to stretch your muscles regularly to keep your blood circulating and muscles oxygenated. If you do some basic seat stretches every 30-60 minutes, you'll notice a huge difference in how you feel both during and after your travels. Fitness expert Caroline Jordan has some excellent chair stretches for this very purpose.
2) Hydrate - dehydration can happen quickly while you're traveling since you'll likely be distracted with travel stress and may forget to drink regularly. Also, when you're stressed, either from traffic, or trying to catch a plane, your cortisol levels increase and that can lead to more thirst and dehydration, not to mention the added heat from the summer weather. Be sure to bring a bottle of water (ideally with some electrolytes) to get ahead of the game. We are big fans of Scratch Labs hydration - it tastes great and mixes easily with water.
3) Proper Footwear - sure you want to arrive at your destination looking great, but if you choose the wrong footwear, you may feel awful upon arrival. Choose a pair of shoes that are substantial enough to support you throughout your journey. As much as we love flip flops and sandals in summer, these are not ideal travel footwear choices. Skechers and On Running both make great, light-weight active shoes that are super comfortable and look great for traveling.
4) Bring a Small First-Aid Kit - even though we try to avoid pain during travel, sometimes It happens so at least you can be prepared. We recommend packing a small first-aid kit including Band-Aids, anti-bacterial spray or gel, some ibuprofen or NSAIDs, and tissues, just in case you encounter some hiccups along the way. You can make your own first-aid kit, or purchase one, and if you want a comprehensive kit, you can also use this one as a model (thanks to Johns Hopkins Medice).
5) Back Buddy - did you know the Back Buddy is your best friend to stay pain free during travel? Travel is physically very taxing and your body can quickly become stiff and tight. To keep muscles loose and limber, simply place the Back Buddy behind you in your seat, while you're driving (or sitting as a passenger), sitting in an airplane, train, or anywhere else. Lean back and feel the tension melt away from your back and neck muscles. You can easily increase or decrease the pressure based on your needs. It's also so small and portable, you can take it with you in a purse or carry on.