Taryn Toomey is the founder of Class, a workout program that combines various techniques (yoga, high-intensity interval training, cardio) with cathartic mantras and encouragement to discharge toxic energy. She logs around 50,000 in-flight miles per year. Here are her tips for staying refreshed on the road:
• Wake up the old-fashioned way. I have a no-phone policy in the bedroom. So I always bring a portable, battery-operated alarm clock so I can turn my phone off and put it away at night to prevent any interference with my sleep. I’ve created a ritual each night of turning my phone off 30 minutes before getting into bed. I find it especially important to do this when traveling and adjusting to a new time zone and environment.
• Perform some hydrotherapy. Stand in the shower for a minute with the water as cold as you can, hitting the brain and the heart. Then turn it to warm, and stand for another minute. Repeat this three times. Because when you’re in the cold, all of the blood moves toward your organs, and when you do the hot water, it expands the blood and pushes it toward the surface. You’re doing contraction-expansion to get the body flushed out. It should really help wake you up.
• Check in with your psoas muscle next time you’re on a flight. I will do some seated pigeon-pose stretches while I’m in the seat — I do try to always fly business class if I’m doing a big trip — where you just kind of cradle your leg and rock it back and forth, feeling the ball socket of your femur joint rolling around in your hip joints. It’s helpful to release your psoas muscle, which wraps from your inner thigh all the way through the outer hip into the lumbar spine. It’s the width of a filet mignon. When people’s backs feel really achy, they have a tendency to assume it’s their back, and oftentimes it’s that muscle, super tight.
• Refuse that in-flight meal. Fasting on flights helps with jet lag. I’ll eat right before I take off, or right when I land. When we’re up in the air, we get bored, and there’s this constant bombardment of food and snacks. The first time I tried fasting on a flight was from New York to Los Angeles, and when I landed, I found that I didn’t feel like my stomach was sticking out five feet wider than it usually is. And I wasn’t as swollen in my fingers and my toes.
• When you travel, pray for rain. When you’re somewhere for 10 days and it rains for a couple of days, that feels like a gift, because you get to settle in more. A rainy day is permission from the universe to stay in and have an introspective, quiet, beautiful day to relax. Stay in your bathrobe, shut down, and let your nervous system decompress.
— Mark Ellwood, Bloomberg