A GUIDE TO BEAT YOUR JET LAG LIKE A PRO
Before we get into how to combat jet lag, let's first understand what jet lag actually is. Jet lag is also sometimes called 'flight fatigue' and occurs when our circadian rhythms try to adjust to the daylight patterns of a new time zone, often resulting in insomnia and fatigue..
So now, let's move on to a cure, or at least how to manage the worst effects of jet lag. Tara Hanrahan, Corporate Director of Spa Operations at Centara Hotels & Resorts, is here to shed some light on how best to combat fatigue after a long flight across many time zones..
The first thing is an acknowledgement that it is a real condition and to stop trying to fight it
"I try to be gentle and kind with myself whilst adjusting to a new time zone. Hydration is key - I drink a lot of water and I lather my skin in oils. The next tip is to spend a few minutes giving yourself a face, ear, and scalp massage. It's paradoxically invigorating and calming at the same time. Lastly, there are some fantastic acupressure points on the hands and feet that can help relieve symptoms," Tara continued, as she revealed her personal tips for dealing with jet lag..."
The Body's Two Essential Needs When Changing Time Zones
There are two basic needs when you move into a new time zone:
- The need to be able to sleep on time;
- The need to be able to wake up on time;
So, finding a balance is really the key here..
"The best stretch that I've found for jet-lag is the yoga pose 'Viparita Kirani' which is simply lying on the ground with your legs straight up against a wall."
It has a myriad of benefits - it stretches the hamstrings and lower back, increases circulation and lymphatic flow, helps to slow the breath, and is just a great restorative way to help your body get back in balance. Tara also recommended stretching for at least 5 minutes, and this can be done in your hotel room...
If you prefer something more soothing and would rather be pampered than having to do it all yourself, at SPA Cenvaree, therapists are expertly trained not only in muscle melting massage but also in providing world-class customer service. There are several treatments that can help you combat jet lag.
The aim in any good jet lag spa treatment is three-fold: to stretch out the muscles in the lower back and legs,
to increase circulation (improving lymphatic flow) and then either completely relax the guest or help invigorate and enliven.
Some guests are desperate to sleep and so our spa treatment incorporates soothing, calming massage techniques. Other guests may have an important meeting but are in a brain fog. So our therapists use refreshing scents such as grapefruit and mint to invigorate, Tara explained.
Phase Shifting and 'Following the Light'
Although jet-lag can't be completely avoided if you're travelling across substantially different time zones, you can maximise your body's ability to cope with it by preparing yourself before you travel. Tara suggested that you 'follow the light'..
Also known as 'phase-shifting', this means that you manage your exposure to light and darkness, preferably starting a few days prior to departure. If you need to wake up earlier than normal you should have bright light in the early morning, and if you need to wake up later, have bright light around bedtime.
Don't let the fear of jet lag stop you from having fun, though. With these tips from an expert, you can easily shake the jet lag off and get your adventure started.