My Itchy Travel Feet | The Baby Boomer's Guide To Travel

Keeping Travel Oomph Alive While You Travel

2011/10/13by Donna Hull

Are you following our boomer travel fitness series? I’m making progress preparing for a trip. Staying fit while I’m on the journey? Well, that’s another story. But I’m in luck — today, Nora Lynch (Fit Travelers Have More Fun) is back to tell us how to keep our Travel Oomph while we’re on the trip.

It’s trip time! Here are my best boomer travel fitness tips to help you stay energized and feeling good so you can have an amazing travel experience.

energy-zapping-breakfast

Will this breakfast see you through a long morning of sigtseeing?

  • Eat an energizing breakfast (which may not be the one on offer in the country you’re visiting.) Stock the guesthouse or hotel refrigerator with cereal, yogurt, fruit or whatever will make your body smile.
  • If you’re touring by car or bus, be sure to plan chunks of active time. Our bodies were made to move! Include parks and gardens, walking tours, city loaner bikes and after-meal strolls in your travel plans.
  • Carry water with you and drink it. Dehydration is a huge energy drain.
  • Make sure you’ve planned sights and activities that you’re passionate about. Don’t settle for a generic top 10 list — make sure you’re seeing YOUR top 10. Look for personal connections to destinations: favorite hobbies to pursue, beloved books or films set in the place you’re visiting, or learning a new skill or local pastime to amp up the energy you bring to your travel day.
  • Be kind to yourself. Remember — our bodies are the ones that have to deliver everything our minds have planned on a vacation. If you’re tired and need a break from sightseeing, do it. Take a rest day or give yourself the afternoon off. Remember, the key is enjoyment, not items ticked off a must-see travel list.
  • Be smart. Don’t waste your precious energy standing in line. Find out if you can reserve an entry time, purchase a city museum pass, or book a tour to avoid the energy drain of waiting to enter popular attractions.

I recommend doing a quick Boomer Body Awareness Check-in before starting your travel day and again at mid-afternoon. Ask yourself, “On a scale of 1-10, where is my energy right now?” Do a body scan for tense or painful areas including jaw, neck, shoulders, low back, legs and feet. Check your mood — are you feeling relaxed and upbeat, or are there storm clouds on the horizon? Ask yourself if you’re feeling well rested and adequately fueled. Once you’ve done this 30-second scan, use the quick fixes below for the Body Awareness Check-In Issue you identified.

Five Quick Fixes To Recharge Your Travel Oomph

walk-boomer-travel-fitness

Take a break and energize with a walk in the park

  1. One of my favorites — the foot massage. Our feet take a beating when we travel! Watch one of these videos before your trip: Classic foot massage or tennis ball foot massage.
  2. Stretching —those tight, aching muscles will thank you. Make sure you know a simple stretch for calves, quadriceps, and hamstrings before you leave home. It’s also a good idea to have a stretch in mind to relieve an aching back. This easy yoga pose could be just the ticket.
  3. Relaxing breathing — you can do this anywhere. Take a few slower, deeper breaths. See if you can breathe into your belly (you’ll notice it move under your hand) rather than using just your lungs. As you breath, notice thoughts and release them if it is mind-clearing that you’re after, or focus on breathing into the heart and feeling gratitude for something or someone special if mood elevation is what you need. I also recommended relaxed breathing if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the newness or strangeness of your destination. Watch The Energy Project’s video for inspiration.
  4. The afternoon nap — Donna told me it’s her favorite. If you’ve had a late night or didn’t sleep well, give yourself permission to take a nap and see how much more you enjoy your dinner and evening plans.
  5. Stopping to eat or hydrate. We are often so intent on seeing everything that we forget to fuel our bodies, which is why a quick mid-afternoon Body Awareness Check-In is key.

Just a couple of minutes daily can pay big energy and enjoyment dividends during travel. So which quick Travel Oomph fix are you going to try on your next trip or vacation? Post a comment to share your favorite.

Nora Lynch, MS, RD, Certified Wellcoach, is the founder of Fit Travelers Have More Fun and creator of The 4 Week Travel Tune-Up and The Travel Oomph Assessment. She helps boomers get a little fitter and more energized for travel so they can see and do everything they’ve dreamed and feel great doing it! Her most recent trips have been to Oregon wine country, Cozumel, Mexico; San Diego, California; Santa Fe, New Mexico; and Rome, Italy. (photos courtesy Nora Lynch).

Have you wondered if better fitness would help your travels? Well, I’m your guinea pig. Nora has offered her course to me so that I can tell our boomer readers about it. Stay tuned for my reports at the My Itchy Travel Feet page on Facebook.

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A boomer travel and lifestyle authority who is exploring the world one activity at a time. Besides writing and publishing My Itchy Travel Feet, she also writes about boomer travel for My Well-Being Powered by Humana, Make It Missoula and is the author of My Itchy Travel Feet: Breathtaking Adventure Vacation Ideas.

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Kenny and Karen October 13, 2011 at 7:13 pm

Just came across your blog and thought it was really good. We really like your tips going to have to try some of them the next time we are traveling.

Reply

Nora Lynch
Twitter:
October 14, 2011 at 8:45 am

So glad you like the tips! For all of you who don’t have a specific trip planned right now…. pick 1-3 tips that most appeal to you and write them down so they’re handy when it’s trip time again!
Nora Lynch recently posted..Travel Photo: Finding Your Travel Magic #8My Profile

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Donna Hull
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 11:04 am

Kenny and Karen, thanks for stopping by. Let us know which tips you try and how they worked for you.

Reply

Living Large October 14, 2011 at 6:55 am

These are all great tips. I tend to over-indulge at breakfast especially, as we don’t typically go out for breakfast unless we’re on vacation. We do try to take afternoon naps (especially if we’re in warmer climates) and giving each other foot rubs while relaxing in the evening is a must!
Living Large recently posted..Living Large tip of the Week: Enlist Friends and Family on the Repurpose HuntsMy Profile

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Nora Lynch
Twitter:
October 14, 2011 at 9:00 am

Sounds like you’re well on your way to taking great care of yourself while you travel – naps AND foot rubs! See if you can bring that great body awareness to your breakfasts… enjoy your breakfast treats, but notice if you’re feeling overfull (leave a few bites) or sluggish (switch in oatmeal, fruit, or other light breakfast you like every 2nd or 3rd day). Or, you can try something my husband and I often do when traveling: order one amazing-sounding, high fat breakfast and one oatmeal with fruit, and split them.
Nora Lynch recently posted..Ready to Leave Your Armchair Behind and Travel For Real?My Profile

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Donna Hull
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 12:51 pm

Those heavy carb breakfasts do it to me every time. I’ve learned that a light protein breakfast gets me to lunchtime in a much better mood.

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sheryl October 14, 2011 at 7:54 am

Great tips. Travel can really zap you if you’re not well-prepared. I’d add: dress in layers. There’s nothing worse than standing in line for a museum (or wherever) and being too hot. It is draining. Also, I always carry my own protein-rich snacks (like nuts) just in case. I can’t depend on the group getting hungry or needing a pick-me-up at the same time I do!
sheryl recently posted..Breast Cancer: 10 Common MisconceptionsMy Profile

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Nora Lynch
Twitter:
October 14, 2011 at 9:02 am

Great additional tips!
Nora Lynch recently posted..Overcoming Pre-Travel Fitness and Diet BackslidingMy Profile

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Donna Hull
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 12:51 pm

Two great tips, Sheryl. Thanks!

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Vera Marie Badertscher
Twitter:
October 14, 2011 at 8:00 am

I am fanatic about getting enough water, but I know that I don’t take time to breathe, and to stretch my muscles when I’m so excited about rushing around to see everything. This is a great reminder that it only takes a minute or two to take care of your well being so you can enjoy even more.
Vera Marie Badertscher recently posted..Travel to Egypt Changes LivesMy Profile

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Nora Lynch
Twitter:
October 14, 2011 at 9:07 am

You’ve got it – our brains tend to run roughshod over our bodies. It doesn’t take much time to take care of ourselves when we’re traveling – it’s pausing our busy, sightseeing-focused minds for a few minutes daily to do it!
Nora Lynch recently posted..Travel Photo: Finding Your Travel Magic #7My Profile

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Donna Hull
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 12:52 pm

Nora is teaching me just how important breathing can be, although I don’t have the meditative breathing conquered yet. It’s that busy mind of mine!

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ruth pennebaker October 14, 2011 at 8:27 am

To keep my “oomph” (love that word), I remind myself it’s my trip and nobody else’s. I don’t * have to* do anything I don’t want to do.
ruth pennebaker recently posted..You Can See the Milky Way From ThereMy Profile

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Nora Lynch
Twitter:
October 14, 2011 at 9:15 am

Perfect. Reconnecting to the energy that comes from “it’s my trip and nobody else’s” can really jumpstart ‘Travel Oomph’! Thanks for commenting!
Nora Lynch recently posted..Slimming for Vacation Travel: Part 3My Profile

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Donna Hull
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 12:53 pm

Ruth, you’re a wise traveler.

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Jane Boursaw
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 9:48 am

Great tips! Being a novice traveler, I appreciate your wisdom and am taking notes for the next time I travel.
Jane Boursaw recently posted..The Hour: Big on Characters, Low on ActionMy Profile

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Donna Hull
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 12:55 pm

Hi Jane. Be sure to let me know which tip worked the best for you.

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Alexandra October 15, 2011 at 12:43 pm

I like the idea of foot massage. So many great ideas in this post! I’m getting worried that my husband will be too old to travel by the time we can. These tips will come in handy. I’m printing this out. Thanks!
Alexandra recently posted..Oysterfest, 2011: Where Oysters Educate, As Well As Please the PalateMy Profile

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Donna Hull
Twitter:
October 15, 2011 at 12:56 pm

It’s amazing what a foot massage can do for one’s mood. I hope you and Sven are able to travel sooner rather than later.

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