If a daily workout routine helps you handles stress while at home, try to make time for it on vacation too. “For early risers, it’s fairly easy because they can get up at five in the morning, go for a run, or work out in the hotel gym,” says Virtuoso travel advisor Betsy Donley. If you’d rather sleep in, Donley advises skipping the long group lunch and using that time for a run and quick meal instead, or squeeze in an energizing, pre-dinner 30-minute workout. “Leaving your hotel room is the hardest part of the workout,” she says.
Just because it’s a group trip doesn’t mean everybody has to be together all
the time. Peeling away to do things that are important to you is key, otherwise resentment might mar the bevy of blissful bonding experiences that await. Donley, for instance, has orchestrated an annual trip for a group of moms and their children for ten years. One of their highlights is discussing the variety of different activities each person partakes in.
Fellow travelers aren’t the only potential source of anxiety: A too-crammed itinerary can cause burnout, not transformation. Be OK with down time, and don’t be afraid to say that you need a break from the itinerary. Virtuoso travel advisor Jessica Renshaw, who recently plotted a solo wellness getaway in Saint Lucia
for a cancer survivor, notes that “feeling well and full of energy doesn’t only have to be available when you have copious amounts of time.” She suggests taking ten deep breaths every morning, while focusing on filling the belly, expanding the chest, and setting an intention for the day.
Finally, don’t sweat the small stuff (let your travel advisor do that), and instead focus on identifying what’s amazing about your trip, rather than what might be annoying.
“Another great way to still one’s mind and bring it into a state of gratitude is to travel with a journal,” says Renshaw. For just a few minutes a day recognize “how the sights and the people you met made you feel, the smells of the street market, the intense colors of the malachite kingfisher bird, or the sounds of the hippos sleeping outside your safari tent. Our senses are heightened when we travel. Use that as a tool to get present."