Long haul flights can be tiring, especially if you travel economy class. Rapid recovery from a long flight journey does rest in our hands. Both in the way we approach the flight itself and the steps we take once we land. Plan carefully, and your jet lag will vanish rapidly; ignore the effects of the flight on your body and it may take days to reset your internal clock.

Step 1

Schedule your iternary on the time zone from which you are departing, according to your internal clock. This allows you to stay focused and remain at your on the first day. Have a good sleep that night to re-orientate your body clock.

Drink lots of water during your flight. Airplane cabins are extremely dry and dehydration makes it tougher to recover. If you’re not sure you can get water on the plane, purchase some at the airport after you go through security; you can’t bring liquids in large amounts through the security checkpoint, but you can purchase them afterward. Continue drinking water once you reach your destination, and stay away from alcohol or caffeine on the plane; both are diuretics, which further dry you out.

Gauge your arrival time and plan to either sleep or stay awake on the plane accordingly. If you arrive late in the day and stay awake on the plane; you’ll be tired and want to sleep when you land. If you land in the morning or early part of the day, try to sleep on the plane so you’ll be refreshed when you arrive.

Exercise on the plane, even if it’s just a little bit. Get up and stretch periodically, and walk up and down the aisles. If you can’t get out of your seat, then perform small stretching exercises targeting your legs and feet. If you have a stopover, see if you can get off the plane, then walk or perform some basic exercises in the terminal. It keeps your blood flowing and prevents aches, which can lengthen your recovery time from the flight.

Caffeinate after you land if you arrive in the morning, and avoid napping in the day if you can help it. Coffee, tea or caffeinated soda will keep you alert and awake until the evening, when you can engage in your normal sleep cycle. Conversely, stay away from caffeine if you land in the evening; it disrupts your normal sleep patterns.

Exercise in the morning after you land, especially if you can do so outdoors in the sunshine or in a brightly lit gym. The lights and activity help your body naturally reset its internal clock, speeding your recovery. If you have trouble getting up, set an alarm clock to help you.

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