5 creative ways delegates can stay healthy while attending conferences
8 Jun 2016 - by Hayley Walls
Business travel can be taxing and take a serious toll on your health, especially when you’re heading to a convention or conference.
Delegates can walk away from a conference equipped with the most valuable knowledge but often coupled with a rather nasty cold. Large gatherings create the perfect conditions for flu viruses to happily bounce from one person to the next.
But there are ways to walk away from conferences happy and healthy. Hayley Walls, marketing manager for Thompsons Travel, shares some creative tips on how to stay healthy while away on business.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Heard that one before? Well, that’s because there’s a lot of truth to it. Starting your day healthy not only keeps you fuller, but sets the tone for healthy conference eating! You’ll be less tempted to reach out for those doughnuts and sweets on the conference table.
You don’t have to stick to the same old hotel breakfast every morning. Do some research and find the trendiest breakfast establishments near the hotel or the conference centre. You’ll be able to mix with the locals, get a sense of your destination and stay healthy all at the same time.
Does the idea of heading to the hotel gym at 5am give you the shivers? You don’t have to suffer on the treadmill to stay active and healthy while away. Instead, why don’t you just ditch the cab and walk to the convention centre in the morning? It’s a great way to explore the area, get some exercise and jumpstart better oxygen flow. Endorphins are a powerful thing and will keep you feeling energised for the rest of the day.
Starting to feel a bit low during the day? Skip the elevator or escalator and take the stairs instead. It’s a great way to work some exercise into your day and, who knows, you might even set a new record on your Fitbit/Apple watch.
Conferences can be a hive of activity with dinner parties and cocktail evenings almost every night. Don’t stay out too late and try to get enough bed rest. The truth is that you’ll need your bed rest during a busy conference to help you keep your stamina up and prevent you from getting sick. Don’t want to miss the night parties? Try a midday nap or a mid-morning, or a mid-afternoon nap. Try to find some time during the day – even if it is just 40 winks – to relax and recharge.
At the end of a stressful day, hitting the bar with a few colleagues to let your hair down is very tempting. We should tell you that alcohol is not the best option, and that you should rather stick to water.
But, if you really want to give into the temptation and get a drink, there are a few bar basics to keep in mind. Cocktails can be really attractive and tempting, but unfortunately they are full of sugar. So, rather steer clear of sugary cocktails and try a gin and tonic or a glass of wine instead.
Try to stay away from the fried foods at the airport. Instead, pack raw, unsalted nuts and fruits to take along. They’re healthy and will keep you full for longer. Also drink plenty of water and stay away from the sugary sodas.
Sitting still on the plane is also not the healthiest of activities and there are some movements you can do to keep your blood flowing while in flight. See it as a chance to keep healthy and provide entertainment for your fellow passengers.
Ankle rotations: Lift your feet off the floor and draw a circle with your toes, trying to get a full range of motion through your ankle. Repeat in the opposite direction.
Foot lifts: Alternate keeping your toes on the floor and lifting your heels while keeping your heels on the floor and lifting your toes.
Knee lifts: Sitting straight up, keep your knee bent and lift your thigh so that you’re flexing at the hip. Alternate legs.
Toe curls: Curl your toes and release. Also try pressing your toes down against the floor or just wiggling them inside your shoes.
As you can see, there are plenty of creative ways to keep healthy during your next trip. Whatever you do: don’t let health take the backseat to the demand of business travel.