Last week we flew from Perth to Europe. My little boys and I. We managed the 21 hour long haul flight, but that’s only one part of the journey. The equally (if not more) challanging part of travelling long distance is the inevitable jetleg at the other end. This is what we do to avoid and cure our tired bodies and minds so we can start enjoying the European summer faster!
1. Prepare your body a few nights before the flight to minimise the time difference. E.g. start going to bed earlier or later to minimise the time difference gap.
2. Eat your normal dinner, breakfast or lunch at home before your flight and avoid eating extra meals on board. E.g. we usually skip the midnight meal and wait for breakfast so we don’t double up.
3. Sleep like you are already at your destination. As soon as you are in the plane check your time of arrival and count back how long you should sleep. Sleeping less for one night can help slotting back into your new time zone easier.
4. Drinks lots and lots and lots of water. And have a wine, just one, to relax.
5. Walk around lots.
6. Listen to relaxing music or watch a funny movie; laughing and feeling relaxed helps your body and mind.
7. Wear stockings and keep your feet up; I always have my feet on a backpack or trolley.
8. Once arrived, play or exercise, preferably in the sun. Spend the day time in natural bright light and make sure your night time is dark.
9. Consider taking melatonin. Melatonin is the hormone your body naturally creates around the time you usually go to bed. Talk to your doctor before taking melatonin, to be sure it’s safe for you.
10. Be patient, it can sometimes take up to five days for your body to adjust to a new time zone. For short holidays it can be useful to stay in your ‘old time zone’ instead of adjusting and re-adjusting a week later.