• 8 Tips to Avoid Jet Lag

    • 1 - A few days before you leave, set your schedule forward or back an hour (or more) as much as possible. The biggest things that will make a noticeable difference are your eat and sleep schedule. Adjust those and the time change will be easier on your body in less time.
     
    • 2 – Avoid caffeine and alcohol the day of the flight. They will dehydrate you and will cause symptoms of jet lag to set-in more quickly.
     
    • 3 – As soon as you are set-up on the plane, it is a good idea to change your watch to the time of your destination. This will help the transition to sleep and stay awake when you should according to your destination, rather than where you took off.
     
    • 4 – If you are flying somewhere where it is night, force yourself to sleep on the plane. If it is day, then stay awake. This will avoid walking off the plane and trying to fall asleep in the middle of the day or staying awake all night.
     
    • 5 – If you are on a flight where sleep in a necessity, talk to your doctor about getting a short-term sleep medication. If an upgrade to first class or business class is available, it is wise to do so. The extra comfort and leg room will make sleeping much easier than back in coach.
     
    • 6 – Eat based on your destination. Avoid a middle of the day dinner because you are starving. Rather, snack throughout the time on the plane and then be prepared to eat something around a normal meal time.
     
    • 7 – Once you arrive at your destination try to spend as much time as possible outside. Staying inside will not allow your body to realize the change and will remain on its usual schedule. Spending time outside, especially in the sun, speeds up the transition.
     
    • 8 – Exercise in the evening and early in the morning. The evening exercise will tire your body and make it easier to fall asleep no matter how “off” your body is. An early morning workout will keep the body moving and prepare you to start the day.
     
    • Michael Newton is a student at Eastern Michigan University and an avid supporter of track and field in the state of Michigan.