Rachael Todd is the founder of the Balanced Mind Movement where she coaches women on confidence, healthy eating, self care, and taking advantage of opportunities. She is a registered health coach and recipient of Miss Florida 2009. She shares her airport wellness tips with us.
What sort of activities do you do to reduce travel stress? For instance, what do you do when you see a huge long security line?
When I see a huge, long security line as I’m headed through the front doors of an airport, I take a deep breath. I check to make sure that I still have ample time before I am boarding, and I reassure myself that I will get there in plenty of time.
I do a mental check-in:
“Rachael, you could either get stressed about this situation and make this really frustrating and difficult on yourself, or you could utilize the time in line to take deep breaths, look around at the people traveling, and perhaps, find a funny situation to brighten your day.
Sometimes I like to watch the little kids traveling with their parents as they’re going through security. If they’re new walkers, they tend to just take off through the metal detector without their parents and it provides quite a funny scene haha.”
I try to make eye contact with the TSA agents and smile at them. They’re working hard, they’re in the airport for long hours, and they too, are probably tired of the long lines.
If I redirect my attention to someone else’s struggle or pain, then I take the attention and focus off of mine.
Generally, by the time I do all of this, I’m loading my bags onto the conveyor belt and I’m through security on my way to the gate!
To reduce travel stress I utilize a guided meditation app on my phone called ‘Simply Being’ or ‘Calm’.
I set the timer for 30 minutes. I put on my eye mask. I put in my headphones. And I unplug from the world around me.
I also love to stretch if I have a layover. I will find an empty corner in my gate and sit on the ground. Stretch out. Touch my toes. Rotate my shoulders, etc.
Another favorite wellness trick is to collect travel-sized containers of each of your favorite skincare products.
Keep them all in one little travel bag. If you have time for an extended bathroom break, open that baggy up at the sink and give yourself a refreshing mini-facial. Rinse your face. Put on some serums.
A good eye cream. A collagen boosting cream with SPF and off you go! Fresh-faced!
What do you eat at airports? Do you bring your own snacks?
I don’t eat airport food.
Or, at least, I try really hard not to. Airport food tends to be highly processed, usually contains gluten/dairy/sugar and it’s definitely not uber fresh.
I love to travel with my lunch box. I have found that most of the time, airport security and airlines do not mind my extra little bag when I tell them it’s for special dietary needs. My go-to snacks are:
- cut up carrots, celery hearts, radishes, cucumbers, sugar snap peas. (bonus if you pack hummus or salsa)
- roasted veggies in a Tupperware container
- a box of arugula (literally from the grocery store) throw an avocado in your bag, and before you head out the door open the arugula, add in some olive oil, sea salt, and squeeze half a lemon over it
- sliced up apples with almond butter (the travel sized envelopes are amazing)
- bag of mixed nuts (unsalted)
All of that being said, if I am caught in a situation where I did not leave ample time to pack snacks, or I am leaving a hotel and headed home and I’ve run out of supplies, these are my rules for looking for airport food.
- 5 ingredients or less
- Protein, good healthy fats, complex carbohydrates
- If I find a salad: No dressing.
- Avoid salt (airplanes tend to dehydrate you enough already)
With some mindfulness, some forethought, and some meal prepping, you DON’T have to land in a new city or country feeling bloated, lethargic, and out of sorts.