Have you ever taken a road trip, or long day trip, returned home and felt awful the next day? You are not alone, I used to experience this quite frequently myself. During road trips it inevitably seems like you make poor food decisions, don’t stop for proper rest, and lose a lot of energy focusing on the road and where you are going.
This hyper-focus on the outside physical world takes a toll on your body and when you return home, finally able to relax, your body is overloaded and symptoms begin to appear. Symptoms like headache, body aches, a general sense of “yuck” and exhaustion begins to set in. If you are tired of feeling this way, read below to discover some very SIMPLE yet EFFECTIVE holistic road trip recovery remedies to quickly get you back on the path to feeling great!
Vata is the first to go.
Vata dosha is all about movement. So it should not come as a surprise then, that vata dosha would start to go out of balance after a trip, whether it be by plane, train, or automobile. The high speed movement of travel puts fuel on the fire of vata dosha. If you recall the principle taken from Myra Lewin at Hale Pule, “like attracts like and the opposite brings balance.” Therefore, if you create more movement in your life vata dosha will increase and if it increases too much it will become imbalanced. The imbalance then becomes symptoms in your body which are recognized by your physical body.
These are warning signs!
Any form of symptom should be taken very seriously and remedied as soon as possible. It is your bodies way of telling you, hey, somethings wrong. However, its not just vata dosha that can become imbalanced during travel. If you go somewhere with excessive sun exposure or eat too many sweet/sugary things pitta and kapha dosha can become imbalanced as well. Due to the fact that vata is based in movement, it is the easiest dosha to imbalance and more often than not the first so that is the focus of this article.
If you have another primary dosha be sure to pay attention to the signs and symptoms your body gives you and implement the opposite treatment to find health and peace within your body.
Now what you have been waiting for, read below to discover SEVEN easy and effective things you can implement right in your home to feel great after travel. The great thing about all seven is you probably already have most, if not all, of these items in your home already!
1. Eat a fresh cooked, warm, and grounding meal
As mentioned above, vata is probably going to be on the verge or out of balance after a trip. A couple of the qualities of vata are that it is cold, light, and dry. So…as I have mentioned before you must give your body some opposing quality to restore equilibrium. This is where the warm, heavy (grounding), and freshly cooked meal comes into play.
Of course, there is more involved in the specific items that should be cooked and prepared, but that is over and above the scope of this article. For now, just make sure you eat a meal that has both augmenting and extracting qualities, is prepared at home, warm or hot temperature, and with fresh ingredients.
Your body will thank and love you for it, trust me!
2. Limit mental stimulation
I know, I know, another line about limiting screen time, but it really works. No matter if its morning, noon, or night when you return home stay away from the screen. Put down the cell phone, Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, Twitter and any other social media platform you may (or may not be) addicted to can wait until tomorrow! The unread emails in your inbox can wait. Your DVR backlog will still be there tomorrow and the day after.
Seriously….stay off the screen.
Instead, do something that fuels your soul in a different way. Think of hobbies you enjoy or small pleasures you like to partake in that don’t involve a device.
Some things I like to enjoy include reading, listening to instrumental music, crocheting, and hiking. Find your “thing” and make sure you are present in the moment. I guarantee you will feel more relaxed, rested, and grounded after taking some down time away from all the stresses of social media and work.
3. Go to bed early
Simple, but effective – go to bed early. There really isn’t much to say other than get your butt to bed! Numerous studies have been done and shown the profound effect that quality sleep has on the body and mind. Your body needs rest, it is the opportunity given to us by mother nature to recharge our batteries and let go of the constant mental stimulation. If you traced back all the thoughts and decisions you make in one day, it would be in the thousands or maybe even more. Your consciousness needs a mental health break. So do yourself a favor and get to bed early to give yourself some much need rest.
4. Essential oils are your friend
Essential oils can be an extremely helpful in any area of your life, but especially when promoting rest and relaxation. Some Ayurvedic favorites are:
- Clary Sage
This list is not exhaustive and you should always practice care and attention when using essential oils. Do you have any favorite oils for rest and relaxation? I use Deep Blue by Doterra and have had great success.
5. Take a warm bath or shower
Just like going to bed early, taking a warm bath or shower doesn’t cost you a dime. It requires little effort, but the benefits that can be absorbed are huge. Vata by nature is cold, so to help bring your physical body back into balance a warm bath or shower is key.
For me personally, a bath is much more effective because I so rarely take the time to have one. The extra-special feeling of taking time to draw the water and then allowing myself to soak not only physically relaxes me, but rejuvenates mentally. Being a mom I seem to rarely take time for myself and whether you are a mom or overrun by work, you will undoubtedly feel the release of stress too.
6. Spiced milk before bed
If your like me, and not a big milk drinker, I don’t blame you if you are skeptical. I have never really liked milk and am far from one that willingly drinks a glass. However, I was so tired of feeling like crap after traveling that I decided I really didn’t have anything to lose. Doing a bit of reading in the Ayurvedic perspective, I discovered that cows milk is highly regarded as one of the most nourishing foods available to us if consumed the correct way.
What I mean by this, is that in today’s society milk is highly processed and then consumed cold straight from the refrigerator. Historically, this was not the case. According to some, milk consumed fresh at room or warm temperature provides one of the most direct sources of prana, or life into our bodies. I use the following recipe taken from the Hale Pule Blog:
1/2 Cup Whole Milk (raw is best, but non-homogenized will do)
1/2 tsp. Ghee
1/8 tsp. Cinnamon
1/8 tsp. Cardamom
1 tsp. Honey or Maple Syrup (Honey is warming & syrup is cooling)
Add all ingredients and bring milk to a boil, then turn off heat immediately.
The heaviness of the milk will ground vata, cool pitta, and continue to balance kapha dosha if spiced correctly.
7. Earth your way to relaxation
I had no idea, until recently, then spending time outside in nature actually had a name: Earthing.
Earthing is basically the act of getting outside and being present in nature. Touching the grass with your bare feet, stroking a tree with your hand, or feeling the wind whip across your face. If you have ever spent anytime outside in the mountains, a park, or your backyard I’m sure you have felt the effects.
We are a part of nature, flesh and bone, connected to the very essence of each and every living thing. Spending time outside helps your body to reconnect, ground, and breath in new life.
Holistic health and recovery is easy
See how simple it can be? By no means do you have to do or implements all seven suggestions above, but why not give it a try? All are simple and yet extremely effective. I assure you, that the vitality and injection of prana you will feel the day of and the next are well worth the minimal time and effort required on your part.
Try these 7 simple holistic roadtrip recovery tips and let me know how they worked for you! If you have any suggestions to add of things you do at home to recharge I would love to hear about them.