Okay, I realize any season can be a travel season but it has been feeling like full on summer lately and all I can think about are going on adventures. Standing between you and the destination is often a big long wait at the airport or being squished in the car for hours. For myself, I want to explore mostly on Vancouver Island, so that will mean lots of driving for me.
Whenever I think of travel, I think of long, tiring days of waiting. Getting used to taking the ferry to the mainland more frequently has made me realize how much movement one can fit into the gaps we have in travel.
Here are some things I do when travelling to keep my body feeling good. Warning - a lot of these may make you feel like a little self conscious at first for moving around so much when everyone else around you is patiently sitting and waiting, but you'll forget all about it once you get started!
Walk when you can – skip the moving sidewalks in the airport and if you have time to kill, take a walk. Going for a walk will often take you away from the crowded waiting areas and maybe you can get some fresh air while you’re at it. It will keep you feeling more alert as a bonus. Sometimes I will just pace or do some side lunges if there isn't much room.
Take the stairs – stairs are a good chance to get the blood flowing and get those leg and glute muscles working. Plus it gets you past everyone that is stuck standing on the escalator.
Keep moving – you can just flat out do some self care while you’re waiting. Whip out that lacrosse ball, unroll that theraband and have at it! I find I always focus better when I’m stretching en route because I have nothing better to do and I’m also trying to avoid making eye contact with bystanders!
Get creative – sometimes you have to just use whatever you have on hand to do some work on yourself. I’ve used my Nalgene bottle as a foam roller before, and have found a good pointy corner to lean on to get at some ropy muscles. If I have nothing on hand, I will do some back mobility and stretches.
If you’re stuck doing the driving, your options are definitely more limited. I find I’ll do some chin tucks to check in on my posture or shoulder rolls. Its also helpful to notice if you're clenching your jaw or slouching in your seat. You can pick a frequency to review how you are sitting in your seat - for example at every city you pass, you can do a quick body scan and see if there are any adjustments you want to make in your body posture.
If you're already too far gone into vacation mode to even bother moving, no problem. Bring some pillows or roll up a hoodie to use for back or neck support to minimize any strain from seats that may not fit you well. You might as well be comfy if you’re going to be seated for a while.
This is just a small list of suggestions that you can try. I'm always happy to talk more and get down to talking about specific stretches any time - just ask!