Hello my smart moms,
I know we’ve all experience vacation hangover.
I go in expecting relaxation, warm sun, cool water, and returning with a rested, healthy glow. Instead, I often come home looking worn out and feeling drained.
Vacations can take a lot of out me through long travel hours, layovers, early mornings, and a whole ton of excitement. It’s fun and often worth it, even if I feel like I need a vacation from vacation!
So through years of trial and error, I’ve come up with my own special formula to beating the blues.
Take note, here are some helpful habits I’ve adopted to reduce and relieve vacation hangover.
I know they say “sleep when you’re dead,” but I’d rather not die from a lack of sleep.
You can’t ever really “catch up” on sleep. Once you’re behind, you’re behind. It’s important to maintain good sleeping hours through vacation so that you don’t become drained and, let’s admit it, very grouchy.
If you have to, catch some zzz’s through some naps in the hotel room.
Sleep will also help your immune system and help you beat out those travel germs.
When you get home, go to bed on time and get some extra hours. Especially if you’re traveling through time zones. It might be hard to fall asleep, but put your head on the pillow and just do it.
Try to Eat Healthy
You’re on vacation—treat yourself.
It’s ok to indulge and relax. Just make sure you’re getting enough vitamins and other nutrients.
Overeating on junk food causes fatigue, achiness, grouchiness, and increased chance of getting sick.
When I overeat or just eat junk food the whole time I’m on vacation, I come home feeling bloated, gross, and out of sorts.
When I take time to eat well on vacation, I have more energy through the day, I desire to do more and stay active, and I feel much more energetic and happy when I get home.
I know all too well the temptation to just sleep and lie around when on vacation.
But I’ve found that taking the time to do some yoga, go on bike rides/walks/runs/hikes, or even just playing a lot keeps me much more energetic and happy. When I sleep in too much it knocks off my regular schedule and keeps me lethargic.
I recommend getting up at a reasonable time and just stay active. You don’t have to do your regular workout routine if you don’t want to.
Play and get your heart rate up. You’ll maintain your muscle better and feel much more able to continue being active and productive when you get home.
I think I put this in every health post because it is so freaking important.
Carry a water bottle and refill a lot. Get enough to drink to keep your digestion regulated, your skin clear, the head aches away, and to get enough uninterrupted sleep.
If you drink caffeine or alcohol, or you work out, make sure to use extra hydration supplementation to make up for the fluid you lose.
Vacation from Vacation
I always plan an extra day or two to catch up on sleep and become adjusted to being at home before returning to work.
I function much better if I have some time to be in my environment and recuperate before putting my nose to the grindstone again.
Getting home at midnight and returning to work the next day is just not a great idea.
I unpack right away because I like to have my life organized.
My husband likes to take a little more time (like a month).
We found a happy medium eventually. The thing is, you feel a lot more at home if your laundry is washed and your stuff is back in its proper place.
My husband absolutely hates unpacking but we work together to get it done the day we get home so that we can set up house. And I take time to relax when I first get home now, so I don’t stress myself out right when I get home.
Do Your Chores but Pace Yourself
Yep, the house looks disorganized now that your luggage is strewn on the floor and everyone ate through what was left in your kitchen.
I always start to feel the creeping stress of chores, mail, emails, grocery shopping, and getting everyone ready for school and work.
Getting into our chores soon after getting home makes us feel productive, but we pace ourselves and take it easy. Plunging into it causes too much stress.
My husband and I make the best of it by giving ourselves a certain amount to do and then rewarding ourselves. So if we get through our stack of bills we will go get ice cream. Once we get the house back in order we all go to a movie.
Reconnect with Friends and Family
Remember being home is fun!
And you can still have fun. That’s not just for vacation.
Call up friends and family for some hang-out time and catch up with each other’s lives. Plus it’s a great time to bring out the camera or vacation photos on Facebook.
We all know everyone is just dying to hear every detail of our vacation.
Or scrapbook, or whatever it is you do to remember the good times. Journaling helps me relive the vacation and come to terms with it ending.
Maybe it’s because it’s a project that I love this part so much. I feel it just completes my thoughts and gets me ready for real life again!
Journaling is therapeutic and I love being able to go back years later to read about the goofy adventures we had as a family. I put pictures in my journal too, so everyone enjoys looking through the photos and reading the entries.
Maybe not the whole cure…but it’s pretty gosh darn close. If I do these simple things during and after vacation, I feel a million times better, healthier, and ready to kick butt (yay!). I know it can help any of you. Even if you just opt to do a couple, you’re going to be better off than if you didn’t do any of it. No matter what, you’re probably going to feel crummy that your vacation didn’t last the rest of your life. But spend time writing and being grateful that you had the chance to experience wonderful things as a family, couple, or even by yourself.
You’ll start feeling awesome in no time.