What’s Your Travel Routine?

When you’re traveling, you know your routine is going to get thrown off a bit.  It’s a given.  But do you stick to your normal routine or be a little more free?  For me it all depends – who am I with, where am I going, what will I be doing, etc.  I’m actually traveling now for my full time job and this topic came to mind after not feeling rested after a few nights in the hotel.  My dilemma was whether to sleep a little more or wake up early and get a workout in.

Before you go jumping on me, let me give you some background information.  This week I’m traveling for my full time job, to a place that kind of has nothing around it (within an hour) and is for training…training that is from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM for five days straight.  When I told my husband where I was going he said “Oh that place, there’s nothing there!”  Yea, I was a little nervous, no lie.  My plan was to come and follow my normal routine, with the exception of when I do my workout.  Because I was going to be waking up later, I figured I’d try to do my workouts in the morning instead of the afternoon/early evening.  The first day, it didn’t happen.  The second day, it also didn’t happen.  I slept in!

I tried to figure out why and a number of reasons came to me:  “The bed is not my bed”, “The pillow is not my pillow”, “The temperature in the room is not what I’m used to”, “I’m in a place that I’m not 100% comfortable with”, “I’m away from my husband”…

I could go on and on, but what’s the point.  I mean, these are really first world problems.  And yes, I’ve tossed and turned the past two nights.  It has not been too good of an experience with my sleeping pattern yet.  And don’t get me wrong, the bed is comfortable and the room is clean.  I just cannot seem to find sleep.  Needless to say, the first two nights, I chose to sleep in.  And I will tell you, this is my normal routine.  And it’s been a good decision to sleep in a bit.

What I wanted to do was abandon this routine and wake up early to workout.  I wanted to get it done so I could still feel like I’m myself.  I personally fit in fitness 4-5 days a week and it helps me feel human – both mentally and physically.  Since I arrived at my destination on Sunday, I have not exercised once.  Yes, I’ve walked a bunch and gotten my steps in, but not like I do at home.

At home, I typically get in a run or do some weight training.  It clears my mind and helps me sleep better.  The hotel does have a gym, but I have not used it at all this trip.  And trust me, it’s a good gym – treadmills, free weights, a Bosu ball, and a spot to do some yoga.  So why have I not used it yet?  Because I’ve decided to stick to my routine and get more sleep in the morning.  Although exercise is important to me, sleep is just as if not more important.

So here’s my question to you – which is more important for you?  Sticking to your routine or going outside of that routine and trying something new?  Only you can answer that question.  For me, sticking to my routine is more important on this trip, especially because it’s a trip that’s for work and I have to be on my A-game.  But for my next trip, things might be different.

My sole purpose for this post is to share with you that there are good things to sticking to your routine and there are challenges with sticking to that too.  As with anything, you have to weigh your options and see what’s in front of you.  I’d love to hear more about your travel routine, but for now…I’m off to bed.

Is Vacation Mode Good or Bad?

While I’ve been on vacation, I’ve noticed something about the way I feel.  Yes, I’m calm and relaxed and I’m having fun, but my body is not in love with Island Time.  Let’s just say, my stomach has been in knots for two days now.  I’ve been trying to figure out if I hate something that didn’t agree with me or if I drank something I wasn’t in love with, and I think I figured it out.  But even if I did, I wouldn’t be able to make myself well again instantaneously.   And this whole thought got me thinking…

 Is Vacation Mode really the best thing for our bodies?

For me, it’s not.  I tried to stick to my routine by bringing my workout gear and going for a run.  That helped, but the food I’ve been eating and the beverages I’ve been having are not what I’m used to.  Good food, don’t get me wrong, but not what I eat on a daily basis.  So let’s talk about Vacation Mode and I’ll share my experience, which may be yours too.

Vacation Mode is what happens when we go on vacation, put ourself on autopilot, relax and become a lot more carefree.  When someone is in vacation mode, they tend to be a little more lax on what they eat and drink and go outside of their normal routine.  Some even forgo their workouts while they are in Vacation Mode because they feel they deserve a break.  All of these statements above include myself, to a certain extent.  In the past, I would never care about what I did on vacation because I was in Vacation Mode.  I would eat and drink whatever I wanted, I would not workout because I was on vacation and didn’t think I had to and would just forget all about my sleep.  Doing this over and over again led me to have the hardest time getting out of Vacation Mode when I got back to reality.

Now, after having my stomach in knots for two days now, I’ve realized that Vacation Mode has it’s good points and it’s bad ones too.  The good points include:

  • Knowing you might be able to relax
  • No work for X number of days
  • Less stress, if any at all
  • Great tasting food and drinks
  • Trying out a new place, or one you love

But Vacation Mode for has bad points too:

  • Eating too much or food that is too rich
  • Drinking too much
  • Getting less sleep than you normally do
  • You’re not in your own bed
  • Working out may not even be in the agenda

Now, I’m sure you can name other pros and cons for Vacation Mode.  I’d love to see your pros and cons in the comments below.  But let’s really answer the question asked earlier.  Is Vacation Mode good or bad?  I think it can go both ways.  I love vacation mode, but I think in order to keep myself somewhat normal, I need to workout regularly, I need to eat the same or similar foods that I would at home and I need to make sure I’m drinking enough water and going to bed at a decent time.  But for now, I’m still going to enjoy when I’m in Vacation Mode and slowly but surely work toward a life I don’t have to take a vacation from.  Even better, right?

If you need help getting out of Vacation Mode, follow these three tips I have that just might help you unwind and get back to your normal routine quicker than usual.