For most of us Aussies, travelling just about anywhere is going to give you a big dose of jet-lag. It’s pretty much unavoidable, regardless of which techniques you employ to try and keep it at bay.
However, there are things that you can do when you get to your destination that will really help you manage the effects of it:
Legs up the Wall Pose
I’m one of those people whose legs swell up enormously whenever I fly more than about four hours. It’s a seriously sexy look, let me tell you. 🙂
Thank goodness for Legs Up The Wall pose then! I finally remembered to use this when I was lucky enough to find myself in Paris last year.
I’d arrived at the hotel and the aroma of pain-au-chocolate was calling me. But first, there was something I needed to do. I lay on the bed, moved the pillows
and swung my legs up the wall. I closed my eyes, set the timer for 20 minutes, and let my body do the rest.
Legs Up The Wall pose – known as Viparita Karani in Sanskrit – is magical for jet leg. It works wonders on tired, puffy legs, it gets the circulation going again, it revives you, calms your nervous system, is great for tiredness and insomnia, helps varicose veins, good lord, need I go on?
The great thing about it is that you only need legs and a wall. Simply sit sideways on the floor next to the wall and carefully swing your legs up to rest on the wall, and bring the back of your torso and head to rest on the floor. You can also do it on a bed.
Try it next time you’re flying anywhere…
Yoga Nidra, the sleep-based meditation
I reckon I could include Yoga Nidra in any list on any topic. It’s my go-to for any difficulty that anyone is having at any time.
And it’s just magical for jet-lag. Why?
Jet-lag causes fatigue, sleepiness, digestive upsets, memory lapses, irritibility and general feelings of unwellness. It plays havoc with your temperature, hormones, digestion, heart rate, blood pressure and mental state.
Yoga Nidra, on the other hand, is the complete antidote to all this crazy confusion. Twenty minutes of Yoga Nidra will give you the same restorative benefits as two hours of deep sleep, allowing your brain to move into the deeply restorative delta state. So less fatigue, more energy = winner.
But spending time in this delta state does more than just relieve tiredness. In this zone, your organs have a chance to regenerate, helping cure those digestive upsets. Your brain slows down and you have less thoughts, relieving feelings of irritability.
The stress hormone cortisol is flushed from your system, helping you to move into the ‘rest and digest’ mode of your nervous system – literally restoring your energy and helping you to digest food more easily.
There are tons more benefits to Yoga Nidra, too many to list here.
And the great thing about Yoga Nidra? Anyone can do it, anywhere. You can’t do it wrong. It always works on some level.
My favourite Yoga Nidra recording is done by my friend, Debbie Cairns from The StillPoint. You can access it here on Insight Timer (free to sign up). Or you can listen to my own recording available for free in my online studio. If you’re an Avalon local, check my timetable and come along to a class in-person).
Steam It Out
Now this tip has nothing to do with yoga and, truthfully, I haven’t tested it out – yet. But a very dear friend of mine, who travels a lot for work, recently let me in on her secret, and it’s top of my list for next time I travel.
Step 1 – Before even leaving home, locate a day spa with a steam room and jacuzzi at your destination (bonus points for booking a hotel that has one in- house).
Step 2 – Book the cheapest treatment possible so that you can gain entry to the facilities. Make your appointment for as soon as you can after arriving.
Step 3 – Hop in the steam room before your treatment, than try the jacuzzi followed by the steam room again. Steam, rub and clean yourself of those yukky aeroplane toxins.
Step 4 – Get yourself to a nearby hairdresser and book in for a wash and blow- dry.
My friend says that retail therapy between Step 3 and 4 will also help!
Please give this a go next time you travel, and report back to me, although I am pretty sure it is a total winner. Thanks Chantal. 🙂