The summer of 2022 will be remembered as the summer we all started traveling again. For vacation, family visits and work, we’re hitting the road and taking to the skies. And we’re trying to figure out if travel savviness is like muscle memory.
Will it all come back to us, or will we feel awkward forever?
Our founder, Wilson Lau, has been a “road warrior” for much of his career, flying around the world multiple times a year, to source the highest-quality Chinese herbs, speak at global industry events and visit growers, suppliers and clients. He, too, has been “grounded” for the last couple of years, but he’s back to IRL meetings and business trips instead of Zoom and Teams meet-ups at all hours of the day.
We asked Wilson to share his best travel tips for keeping calm and carrying on when he’s (far) away from home. No surprise: He never leaves home without our products. Read on to learn how he uses NuTraditions products – and the ancient herbal wisdom of Traditional Chinese Medicine – “to super-charge my adventures.”
1. Adjust your diet and stay hydrated.
When taking any trip that involves a large time difference, I start preparing for it 2-3 days in advance. I will make sure that I am properly hydrated and adjust my diet to eliminate items that are stimulating according to Traditional Chinese Medicine food theory, such as garlic. What these shifts accomplish is that when you board the plane, your body rhythms are more closely aligned with where you are going.
Set reminders on your phone to make sure you’re drinking water throughout the day. Airplane air is quite dry, so staying hydrated is important!
2. Shift your sleep slightly each day.
I will start adjusting my sleep schedule, too, so it will more closely match the time zone in my destination. For example, if I am traveling to Europe, I will start going to bed earlier and waking up earlier. I will go to bed around 7 p.m. PST (4 a.m. in Paris). How the heck can you fall asleep at 7ish? You start to adjust the rest of your day, too. “Dinner” happens in the afternoon, so you’ll have digested it by bedtime. Then, I can take a Hello Dreams™ Sleep Strip to help ease me into a blissful, relaxing evening of sleep.*
Adjust your screen brightness along with your schedule, so the blue light doesn’t confuse your internal clock.
3. Focus on steady energy.
Despite the strange hours I keep for a couple of days, I am still productive because I got 8 hours of sleep. Of course, I ensure that my energy level stays consistent through the day, by starting with a cup of Good Morning Sunshine™ Coffee + Adaptogens.*
Since our pods work with most Keurig® K-Kup®-compatible brewers, you can take them with you on the road. (So many hotels use this type of coffee maker now!)
4. Get on local time ASAP – and stay there.
As soon as I board the plane, I change the time on my watch and devices to local time at my destination. I then take a Hello Dreams™ when it’s nighttime at my destination to help ease me into a peaceful slumber, so I can start my day in my destination fresh and productive.* To make sleeping easier on the plane, I dress in layers and pack a sleep mask. And when you reach your destination, it’s extremely important to think in local time and do what’s appropriate at said time.
If you’re tired when you land, resist the urge to nap. Drink some water and your Good Morning Sunshine™, then get some sun. The light will help keep you awake.
5. Nourish your body.
Focus on eating delicious but healthy meals on time with your destination. Skipping meals can lead to energy crashes, and reaching for quick, sugary foods (or heavier ones) can also impact energy.
Pack a few healthy snacks to tide you over between meals. Hunger and thirst can cause fatigue, so we often reach for caffeine when our bodies really want water or a snack.
Now that I have a few trips – shorter ones and some long ones – under my belt, travel is starting to feel like second nature again. And it helps to have NuTraditions products, since they let me maintain a self-care routine that’s rooted in the ancient wisdom of TCM even when I barely have a moment to spare.
When I get home, I reverse this routine: I shift into local time as soon as I’m back on the plane, then stay on that schedule. With two little ones waiting at home, giving in to the fatigue after travel isn’t an option!
Whether you’re prepping for a business trip or vacation with your family, my number one travel tip is this: The key is preparing your body for impending time zone change, so you are easing into it. Whether you’re flying across the country or around the world, try not to shock your body with a sudden, drastic change. I like to think about this in terms of weight lifting. You want to warm up your muscles before moving onto the heavier weights, right? I hope that these tips help you ease back into travel feeling calm and prepared – no stress or anxious moments!
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.