Sorry I was late this month. I was in Sierra Leone, Africa doing some training for the month of June. While I was there I had no internet, or much of anything else. LOL. Some thoughts below on traveling and trying to stay in shape. Something I have to deal with all the time and I'm sure many of you do. Thanks and be safe.
One challenge that many of us face when trying to stay in shape is traveling. Now this travel could be for military deployments or business travel. Either way, even a short trip can throw a wrench into your fitness routine. Trust me when I tell you I have plenty of experience in this area and I talk a lot about this in my book Corps Strength. The bottom line is I've been dealing with it all my adult life and still doing it since I retired from the Marine Corps. Just last week I made a return trip of almost 40 hours from Sierra Leone, Africa. The training we did there was awesome, but the trip over and back was not fun. There is no way around the fact that a trip of that length sucks, and there is going to be some jag lag and fatigue. The point is that you can take a few steps to make travel have much less of an impact on your health and workout routine. First if at all possible, you need to get some PT in before you get on the road. This will go a long way. We all know how airports are nowadays, the crowds, TSA, rushing around, it can make you nuts. If you can, get up early and get a workout in before you go, it will really take the edge off of your attitude. This is especially true if you are going to have to go through international airports, and especially so when you travel to 3rd world countries. The second part is how you eat and drink during your trip. Now I have sat in airport bars and drank beer for hours waiting for flights and I still think a FEW beers can be a good thing, but if you drink to much while you are traveling you will pay for it later. It just seems that airplane "air" makes your a hangover worse, so try to keep your drinking minimal. With that limit your coffee, too much caffeine will add to your jet lag. I go with only 1 cup in the am on travel days. If you must drink coffee after that go decaf. As far as food goes, its been my experience to try to eat very little while traveling. I avoid fast food and anything fried or high fat. Want to get sick? Just load up on too much coffee, greasy airport food, throw a ½ dozen beers, then get on a long plane ride. Its a sure plan to feel worthless when you get to your destination. I stick with low fat, high protein sandwiches and high octane snacks like trail mix, beef jerky and fruit. You also need to constantly drink bottled water, traveling by air will dry you out in short order. To be perfectly honest when I get on a long flight, (6 hours plus) I get a apple juice, drop an Ambien and go to sleep. The combination of high carb juice and the medicine knocks me right out. Too much chow and/or alcohol tends to make it hard to sleep even with a sleep aid. Soft earplugs and a sleep mask are a must. After you get to your destination, make every effort to get your body clock to match your new surroundings. This may mean you have to stay up when your tired but it will be a big help to get in some PT as soon as you can. After I returned from my recent trip late on Sat night. I slept a few hours then I got up early Sunday morning and went for a run. Now this run would never make the Olympic standard, but it did get me going. I then went to work early Monday morning after a another PT session and even after that 2 day trip from hell I was pretty much back to normal. By comparison the guy I traveled with had to take 2 days off to recover and still was half ass when he came back to work on Weds. No doubt these types of trips will tire you out, however they don't need to totally beat you down and screw up your routine long term, it just takes some planning and a little discipline to make it a whole lot less hassle. Good luck and be safe.