5 New Ways to Get Over Jet Lag

I didn't start traveling internationally until I was well into my 30's. I remember returning from a trip to Uganda and jet lag hit me hard. I was up before the sun, usually dragging by the afternoon and forced into a nap and then by the evening, I was useless after eight. I knew there had to be a better way to overcome jet lag. On my next international trip, I adapted so much better, I think because I learned a few skills that have helped me overcome jetlag. I'm sharing a few new ways for you to get over jetlag too.

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5 New Ways to Get Over Jet Lag

5 New Ways to Get Over Jet Lag

What is Jet Lag?

Jet lag is a temporary sleep disorder affecting anyone traveling across multiple time zones. It's a relatively new disorder since international travel has become more accessible, but if you've ever crossed a few time zones, you'll know exactly how it feels to have jet lag.

What Does Jet Lag Feel Like?

Jet lag happens when your normal sleep patterns are disturbed. People typically feel drowsy, tired, irritable or lethargic and sometimes have symptoms of insomnia.

Jet lag does not have to get the best of you. Here are a few ways you can overcome jetlag.

1. Try Melatonin

I rarely take any supplements in my normal life, but when I travel, I swear by Melatonin. Melatonin is a natural hormone produced in your brain that helps your body fall asleep. On a long flight to my destination, I always pop a Melatonin around the bedtime in the destination I'm traveling to.

Once I arrive at my destination, I take a Melatonin every night before bed so that I can sleep soundly. It's not a sleeping pill, it's a supplement that helps your body to sleep in its natural rhythm. 

When I return home, I continue to take a Melatonin at night so that it will help my body get back to its normal sleep cycle. I take it until I'm back on my normal sleep pattern, usually just a night or two. I like this 10mg kind {though 5mg will probably do the trick too} because it dissolves in your mouth and you don't need water. 

2. Drink a Lot of Water

I always get an aisle seat on an airplane because I have found that good hydration is key to beating jet lag. I drink a LOT of water when I fly. I travel nearly everywhere with this HydroFlask. It's easy to fill up and it slips into the pocket of most backpacks and even the back of the airplane seat. It also is great at keeping my water cold for hours. There is nothing I hate more than drinking lukewarm water. Yuck. Aim for drinking at least half your body weight in ounces when you fly. 

Bonus: Those extra bathroom breaks will help you get that blood flowing on a long-haul flight so you aren't just sitting there for hours on end.

Need more tips to survive a long-haul flight? Check out this post

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3. Get a Workout In

Listen, I know this is probably the last thing you want to do if you are tired and just came off a long red-eye flight, but I'm telling you, this has been the lynchpin in helping me ease back into my normal routine. It's the first thing I do when I get off a long-haul flight at my destination and the first thing I try to do when I arrive home. Try to get a workout in where you break a sweat and I promise you, your body will snap right back. 

Bonus: Get outside for a workout so your body can feel the sun. It's common to arrive at your destination during the day when your body thinks you should be asleep at home. The sun will help naturally set your body to the correct time.

Want some tips on choosing the best seat on the airplane? I've got you covered!


4. Give Yourself Grace

Sometimes it's necessary to hit the ground running, but you will wear yourself down. If you can, relax your schedule a bit. Don't overschedule yourself and anticipate that you will be a little off your game traveling to and from your destination.

Curious about TSA precheck or Global Entry? I'll tell you everything you need to know!

5. Read a Book

I'm guilty of scrolling on my phone at night while lying in bed. I have noticed, that those studies on blue lights aren't wrong. I don't know much behind the science, but I always bring a book {paper or hardback} when I travel and spend my time before bed, waiting for my Melatonin to kick in. Without fail, my eyes droop faster and I fall into a deep slumber when I do this. So go old school and bring a book and see if it makes a difference for you.

The best way to treat jet lag is to prevent it, so stay on top of these tips, implement what you think will work for you, and notice the difference that it makes in your travel. You can thank me later!

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