Alpin Healthy

10 Best Business Travel Tips to Stay Healthy and Productive on Your Business Trips

How do you stay healthy and productive on a business trip?

After all, if you travel a lot, you want to make sure all that traveling doesn’t impact your health or performance.

Want to learn more? Here are our 10 best business travel tips.

Why you should prioritize your wellbeing on business trips

First things first. Why should you prioritize your wellbeing on business trips?

Simple: Because if you travel often for work, your choices add up.

So while yes, that one steak or pizza feels justified when there aren’t any good options nearby, think about the long-term effects.

For example:

According to Harvard Business Review, there’s a strong correlation between business travel and health risks. Traveling for work means higher stress levels, poorer performance, and a higher risk of health issues like obesity.

We see this in our own organization. Our consultants frequently travel for projects and client meetings. Because of this, we’ve taken a closer look at what we as a company can do when it comes to things like business travel.

In the end, this was why we launched our own health program, Alpin Healthy, and became the first WELL certified building in the Middle East (WELL promotes employee-focused buildings).

So we’re promoting our employees’ wellbeing at the office. But what can be done to improve business trips?

Let’s look at our 10 best business travel tips for healthier work trips.

1. Simple ways to stay healthy on flights

Did you know that flights are full of harmful germs?

In fact, places like your tray table are often the germiest place on a flight.

So how do you avoid getting sick on flights?

Here are the best tips:

  • Use hand sanitizers and disinfectant wipes to clean your seat (including armrests and seat belt buckle) and tray table.
  • Wear a respiratory mask if you notice that people around you are sneezing or coughing.
  • Choose the window seat to avoid contact with people moving around in the plane (as more movement increases the risk that germs will spread).
  • Use your own pillow and blanket on longer flights.

The next step?

Drink more water.

2. What’s the best way to improve your performance? Drink water.

One thing you can’t miss out on during your business trips?

Drinking water.

Staying hydrated is the most effective way to stay healthy and productive.

For example, some of the benefits of water are:

Fluids carry nutrients to your cells, aids digestion, and stabilizes your heartbeat.

So, how much water should you drink every day?

About 30-50 ounces or 1-1.5 liters throughout the day, according to Harvard Health.

And note that when you’re traveling to a new climate, you might need to drink more water because you sweat differently in that climate.

3. Use mass transit in the right way (without getting sick)

You know how it is:

If you travel to a bigger city, mass transit, cabs or a ride service like Uber, Lyft, or Careem might be the easiest transportation alternatives to get around.

At the same time, germs are all over places like subways that transport thousands of people every day.

While outdoor surfaces get sterilized by the sun’s UV rays, underground spaces don’t have that same natural protection.

So how can you protect yourself from getting sick while using public transportation?

Here’s how:

  • Use gloves when touching seats or poles. If you don’t have gloves with you, wrap your arm around the pole, instead of grabbing it with your hand.
  • Don’t touch your mouth and eyes before you’ve washed your hands.
  • And wash your hands as soon as possible.

The same goes for your cab or ride service. Wash your hands immediately after your ride.

Next:

Staying healthy in hotels.

4. Why hotel rooms aren’t as clean as you think

Think hotel rooms are germ-free?

Think again. Many parts of hotel rooms don’t get cleaned on a regular basis.

For example:

The remote control is something most guests touch, but chances are, it doesn’t get properly cleaned after every visit.

So how can you stay healthy during your stay?

Use these steps:

  • Bag the remote control so you don’t touch it when using the TV.
  • Use slippers in your room. Your shoes are full of germs so you might want to minimize walking around with them in your room.
  • Don’t use the bedspread. Bedspreads need to get dry cleaned and most hotels will only clean them a few times a year. So roll it up and put it in a corner during your stay.
  • Wash glasses or cups before you drink from them.

That’s it- that’s how you minimize the risk of getting sick while staying at a hotel.

Next up:

One of our top business travel tips… Your workout routine.

5. How to keep up your workout routine when traveling for business

One of the things our Alpin Healthy program encourages is to keep up a workout routine.

But how do you make sure you stick to it while traveling?

After all, it’s easy to let your workout routine slip with irregular schedules, flights, and the stress of traveling.

At the same time, working out is one of the best ways to ensure that you stay both healthy and productive.

Think about it:

Exercise reduces stress and improves wellbeing, sleep quality, and energy.

You should get at least 150 minutes of exercise every week and get some form of physical activity done every day.

So how do you make sure you get as many benefits as possible from exercising when you’re traveling? As a rule of thumb, if your trip is over three days long, you should pack with you workout clothes and use the hotel gym or go running in a nearby park.

6. The one thing to prioritize when you’re traveling? Healthy food.

What’s something that’s easy to overlook when you’re traveling?

Healthy foods.

After all, it’s not always easy or convenient to get anything else than steak, pizza or other fast foods.

But healthy nutrition is crucial for your health and wellbeing.

So instead of buying a sandwich on the go or snacking on chocolate, pack healthy snacks with you. Nuts are great for traveling and fruits can work for shorter trips.

And before you travel someplace new, do some quick research. Are there any places close to your hotel that sell green and healthy food? If you have a hard time finding anything, ask at the hotel reception for alternatives or any local home delivery apps that let you order healthy food.

Now, changing the way you eat is already huge.

But there’s something else we need to look at… Stress! Here’s how to deal with stress during your business trips.

7. How to reduce stress on your business trip

You know what?

Stress is such a big problem for most business travelers.

It impacts your sleep, energy, and mood- all those things you need to be able to perform at your best level.

So how do you combat stress on the road?

Here’s how:

#1. Stretch. Take breaks and stretch between meetings. Stretching gets your blood circulating. Remember to get up and walk around every 90 minutes. Ideally, you’ll want to take a break and think about something else than work for about 10-15 minutes. For example, read a book or take a short walk (even if it’s to the coffee machine!).

#2. Meditate. Meditate and practice mindfulness for 10 minutes every morning. If you need help clearing your mind, you can use an app like Headspace.

Meditating doesn’t have to be harder than sitting silently for a few minutes and breathing deeply. But it will impact your stress levels.

8. Stay active by walking as much as you can

Maybe you know just how great walking is for your health.

But it’s easy to choose the faster option when you’re traveling, right?

Taking a cab or a quick subway ride… But at the same time, you could get a lot of your daily exercise done if you move around on foot.

Plus, you keep productive and your performance improves.

Speaking of walking, there’s another thing you need to keep in mind.

Your routines.

That’s what we’ll look at next.

9. A great way to stay healthy while traveling? Stick to your normal routines.

Look:

Routines are great. They help you stay healthy, reduce stress levels, and sleep better.

But when you travel, you often forget the routines you have at home.

After all, you might be in a different time zone, in a different climate and your schedule looks totally different from the one you have at home.

A big chunk of your day might be spent traveling or flying.

So how do you keep up your normal routines?

Simple: Create a schedule and stick to it.

So you have set times for when you work, sleep, eat, and exercise.

Preferably, this schedule follows your normal schedule.

A good way to keep yourself accountable?

Add your routines to your calendar and have an alarm go off so you can’t ignore it.

10. The best ways to make sure you get enough sleep

I saved the best for last.

After all, sleep is such an important health factor.

That’s why you need to prioritize sleep as much as you can.

So how much should you sleep?

This depends on you and what amount of sleep keeps you happy and productive. The National Sleep Foundation recommends between seven to nine hours of sleep for adults.

But sleep quality is equally important as the amount of sleep you get. You see, if your sleep quality is poor, you won’t get all the benefits of sleeping.

How do you improve your sleep quality? Take these steps:

  • Make sure your room is dark so that your brain isn’t tricked into thinking it’s day time.
  • Avoid screens (or consider using the Redshift software, which adjusts your screen light according to the time of the day).
  • Avoid coffee after 2PM in the afternoon so that caffeine doesn’t affect your sleep.
  • If you have trouble sleeping, a proven method is to get up, read or listen to calming music for about 15 minutes, and then go back to bed.

Over to you!

There you have it! These are our best business travel tips for staying healthy and productive.

Use this checklist whenever you’re traveling. You might just notice your stress levels go down and wellbeing go up.

Learn more about our Alpin Healthy program and how we work for a work culture that prioritizes wellbeing.

Download a copy of this article as a PDF.

 


We Created a Program to Promote Employee Wellbeing. Here’s Why.

Want to know what employee wellbeing looks like in practice? At Alpin, we set out to develop a program that would promote employee wellbeing in effective ways.

The results of this initiative, Alpin Healthy, have more than exceeded our expectations. Here’s how.

What is Alpin Healthy?

Alpin Healthy is our initiative to promote employee wellbeing. With Alpin Healthy, we want to foster employee wellbeing both at work and at home. We do it by focusing on a few core areas:

Healthy eating

At our office in Masdar City, we offer plenty of organic fruit and green tea. During our breakfasts and lunches, we offer fresh and nutritious food.

Reusable water bottles

Our employees can enjoy quality water thanks to our BPA-free water coolers and BPA-free reusable water bottles.

Safe and healthy working conditions 

At Alpin, we work to achieve safe and healthy working conditions in many ways. We have a rigorous cleaning and sanitation plan in place. Training is given to employees so that health and safety is a priority in their lives. We offer coaching and guidance on things like healthy eating and first aid. 

Sports and recreation 

We organize sports and team activities for our employees. We encourage employees to participate in events like fitness events and team exercise by sponsoring community events. 

Workplace

We work hard to ensure that our workplace fosters wellbeing. We utilize 100% natural lighting, all offices have a view to outside spaces, and our air quality exceeds ASHRAE standards by 30%. We use ergonomic office furniture.

WELL Silver and LEED Gold certifications

Our offices are designed to promote employee wellbeing. That’s why we’ve been awarded by the International Well Building Institute and US Green Building Council with WELL certification at the silver level and LEED Gold certification as the first in the Middle East.

Why do we put so much effort into promoting our employees’ wellbeing?

So, why do we put so much effort into employee wellbeing?

Great question. In fact, our initiative is backed up by quite a lot of data.

According to the Financial Times, research shows that by focusing on wellbeing, employees can gain almost a full day a week in terms of productivity. In other words, employee wellbeing is good for the bottom line.

Second, employee wellbeing is one of our core values. We believe that employees are a company’s competitive advantage. They are what makes the company thrive. Not promoting employee wellbeing would be an extremely bad business decision.

But there’s one more thing we need to figure out. Has our initiative led to any tangible results? That’s what we’ll look at next. 

What have the results been?

At Alpin, we believe in doing things with tangible results. And we’re already seeing some excellent results thanks to Alpin Healthy. Take Hani, who is one of our amazing colleagues.

Hani decided to transform his life and through hard work and determination, he was able to go from 140kg (308lbs) to 70kg (154lbs).

Now, fitness is a major part of his life. Plus, the transformation was internal, too. According to Hani, he feels more confident and is happy that others around him see him as an inspiration.

Take a look at Hani’s story here:



Over to you!

So, there you have it. With Alpin Healthy, our team members have been able to get some amazing results. Now over to you: Learn more about Alpin Healthy program.


Hani Fitbit Hero Interview

In Spirit of the recent Dubai Fitness Challenge 2018, our very own Hani Abdel Razeo has shared his inspirational story with Fitness in DXB on how he has dropped half of his weight through sheer hard work; with his main tools being exercise daily, good nutrition and a whole lot of determination.

Hear how Hani shed 70kg through sheer hard work and determination, and has transformed his life so that now his fitness plays a major role in his everyday life. Hoping to encourage and inspire others, he also shares how he has used his Fitbit charge 3 during the Dubai Fitness Challenge, Dubai 30x30!

Source: Fitness in DXB