Back in December, we ran a tip on basic [% 2446041 | | tips for minimizing jet lag %]. In response, a few readers wrote in with their best strategies for staying alert and refreshed despite racking up the miles.
Claude Jeanloz from Millers Falls, Massachusetts, travels to Shanghai every few weeks for business, and recommends noise-canceling headphones. “My jet lag [is now] cut down from three days to one in each direction,” he says. “I use Bose but I am sure others would do just as well.” He also recommends upgrading your seat, if you can swing it. “It does take me an extra day to recover if I travel economy instead of business class because I just can’t sleep as well in the economy section.”
James Wechsler of Salt Lake City suggests exercise. “On the big planes [used for overseas flights], you can truly stretch your legs. Try to touch your toes, twist your torso left and right. There are many isometric resistance exercises you can do in your seat.” Additionally, “When you arrive, spend 15 minutes in daylight; this helps to reset your circadian clock. It seems to help most when you land at your destination in the morning.”
Both Jeanloz and Wechsler recommend abstaining from alcohol on the flight. Even though many international flights offer free booze, think twice about partaking—you may pay by dragging a bit on the first days of your vacation.
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