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Get the most out of your RealWorld Experience!!

realworld

Yep, it is that time again already, the annual RealPage User Conference aka REALWORLD 2016!!!

Now this is going to be my 6th RealWorld Conference (how can that possibly be?).  For those not in the know, RealWorld is the conference specifically dedicated to RealPage and their partners where we showcase the latest developments in the industry, the product improvements being delivered/developed and most important, thank our partners for their continued partnership.  It is 3 days of networking, learning, previews and fun but let’s face it, it is also long days, longer evenings and tight schedules.  In order to make the most of the sessions and travel fit, you have to have a strategy to thrive.

This is also my 3rd year of providing a few of my tips and tricks to not just surviving the conference but really making the most of it for both education and fintess.  So here are my RealWorld rules to live by:

Tip #1: Plan ahead:

I know I say this every year but I cannot over emphasize this one enough; Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail.  If your plan is showing up at the conference and “figure it out” you are in for a rough time.……not going to happen.  There are just too many great options of sessions to attend and fellow RealPage users to meet.  If you don’t plan ahead you are guaranteed to miss a ‘can’t miss’ session and for sure your workout is not going to get done.

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So if you haven’t already, go download the RealWorld App right now.  Seriously, I’ll wait.

Now, immediately start adding your must attend sessions to your calendar.  Might I suggest ‘Stack the Deck with Business Intelligence’ on Tuesday morning as a starting point?  I hear the speaker for that one is sub-par but the material should be great!!

Once you know when your ‘Can’t miss’ sessions are, you can fill in the rest of the time slots for meetings, networking, product demos and down time.

Tip #2: Stay hydrated:

water bottle refill

You know you should normally be drinking 8 glasses of water a day.  Well , this year we are at the beautiful Wynn hotel.  If you have never been to a conference at this hotel, I will give you fair warning, it is a long way from the rooms to the conference center.  A LONG WAY!!  So you are going to be walking more than you normally do and potentially imbibing on an alcoholic drink or two in the evening, and oh yeah, this is all happening in the middle of the dessert.  I am going to recommend you up your water intake from the standard 8 glasses.  Trust me, you will thank me when you are waking up on days 2 & 3 of the conference.  Now this is where planning comes in again.  I find that it is a very rare thing to find a conference center that keeps the water pitchers/bottles full throughout the conference.

SO BRING YOUR OWN!!

You may not always be able to find a nice chilled bottle of FIJI but you can usually find a water fountain to fill up your own bottle.  And if you are anything like me, you find an empty water bottle strangely motivational.

Tip #3: Recharge:

weary traveler

This will look different for each of us but I find I need a point in my day to recharge more than just my phone.  For me, it is time in the gym.   I can get my head on straight and work all the kinks out that I am feeling from standing all day.  For others it is a power nap in the room, others it is 15 minutes in the sun out by the pool.  Whatever it is that recharges and helps your re-center your mindset, make sure you have time built in each day to accomplish it.

Now we also need to think about that phone, so don’t forget your mobile charger!  We want to hear your thoughts throughout the day (follow the hashtag #RWconf2016 to join the conversation).

Tip #4: Eat well & Eat often:

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Make sure you take the time to eat like you should.  Do not sacrifice the quality of your diet because you need to rush somewhere.  Stop by the store on the way to the hotel and grab some snacks for the room (don’t get me started on the mini-bar options for $10 bucks each).  Put a bar in your purse.  Throw an apple in your bag for later in the day.  Your body needs fuel to thrive vs. survive.  Give it what it needs.

Bonus Tip:  Most hotels that host conferences have pretty good gyms.  Gyms where they actual stock fruit for the taking.

Tip #5: Have fun:

If this is your first RealWorld Conference, you are in for a treat.  It is a blast, especially the party on Monday night.  Although not themed this year, in the past we have celebrated the lives of people like Dr. Seuss or given our best superhero impersonation.

wolverine ABDr. Seuss

The party is a celebration of our partnership with all of you and we pull out all of the stops.  This year promises to be a lavish affair….even if Wolverine will not be showing up.

Bonus Tip #6:

For those of you who are runners (or are even thinking about running), I cannot recommend skipping the treadmill in the morning enough.  Running the Las Vegas strip in the early morning is in my top 5 runs in the country.

Seriously, the people watching is unbelievable!!!

In fact, even if you don’t run, wake up a bit early on Monday or Tuesday and head out for a walk.  I promise that not only will you feel better but you will have conversation topics for the rest of the day!!

Time for me to go pack and finish my presentations but hopefully I will see you at RealWorld!!

What would you give up?

Welcome to the Lenten season!!  That wonderful time of year when some choose what vice they will give up in order to worship the One who gave up everything for them.  If your Twitter/Facebook feed is anything like mine is, it is filled with people either disclosing their vice of choice or professing what indulgence they will do without until Easter.  All of this sacrifice got me to thinking, what would I really like to ‘give up’ (read ‘purge’) from my life?

What would a Road Warrior like to give up if we really could?

So in honor of Lent, here is my top 40 list of things I would more than happily ‘fast’ from this Lenten season:

  1. Flights that depart prior to 7:00 AM: They look great on the calendar.  “I’ll be able to spend the night at home the night before the trip” is a great way to convince yourself you are doing something special for your family.  Reality is they want to kill you when you are getting ready at 4:30 in the morning.  This is a no-win scenario any way you cut it.
  2. Turbulence: Seriously, if I wanted a roller coaster ride, I would head to the nearest Six Flags park.
  3. Sitting in coach: Yes, I am spoiled but if I get to make the list, sitting in coach is one of the first things I would be willing to ‘give up’ for Lent.
  4. Foam Mattresses: I sincerely would like to introduce whoever invented these beauties to karate mat.  They deserve a good kick in the head.
  5. Airport Food: Yes, there are some good spots but for the most part it is abysmal.
  6. Weather Delays: Hey – this is my list and I get to declare that there are no more delays due to white flaky stuff falling from the sky.Calendar
  7. 3 day trips that span 3 time zones: Seriously, why can’t we book multiple appointments in the same time zone (let alone the same city)?
  8. ‘Day Trips’ lasting 16+ hours: We seriously need to reevaluate what constitutes a ‘day trip’.  Just because you can get to/from a market within a 24 hour period does not necessarily mean you should.Ceiling Height
  9. Hotel ‘gyms’ that consist of a treadmill and a broken down StairMaster: And putting a paper note of apology on the broken treadmill does not make it any better.  Fix the equipment for God’s sake.
  10. The casual traveler who thinks the RoadWarrior life a glamorous one: Really?  Yes, I get to ‘see’ lots of great places.  As long as you define ‘see’ as a path that consists of the Airport, hotel, client office followed by a return visit to the airport.
  11. Taking flights on a non-preferred airline: I fly one preferred airline for a reason (see #3).  I would like them to fly direct from every possible location to every possible location.  Is that too much to ask?
  12. Compact Rental Cars: I hesitate to call half of these cars.  I don’t know how Europe deals with it.
  13. Sunday Travel: I sincerely HATE this.
  14. Friday Return flights: Second only to Sunday departures.  Sundays and Friday are made for family and home.
  15. Conferences: Oh if one could only dream of this world.
  16. Hotel rooms without coffee makers: This is just mean!!
  17. Hotel up-lighting: I realize you want the building to look good from the exterior but if we could manage to find a way to not have a metal halide light equivalent to the sun pointed directly into my window, I would appreciate it.
  18. The forgotten toiletry: There is always something I miss replacing.  Couldn’t a magical fairy replace it for me without my involvement?
  19. Out of Office: Why even bother?  I am always Out of the Office.
  20. Emails from your travel booking system: Yes, I know my trip is upcoming.  So is the one you will email me about tomorrow.  STOP!!  You are just filling up my email box.
  21. TSA Security Line Banter: Yes, I know I need to take off my shoes and belt.  I even know that I am not allowed liquids or gels in containers larger than 4 oz.  I do not need to be continually educated about the procedures as I stand in line to go through the Pre-check line for 20 minutes.denver-tsa-line
  22. Travelers who travel once a year who are TSA Pre-checked: Why did you even bother?   You waited way longer for your interview than you would have going through security.it will fit
  23. Travelers with no sense of special awareness: No, your overstuffed ‘roll aboard’ is not going to fit in the overhead compartment on this Embraer Jet.
  24. Overhead compartments in an Embraer Jet: Really Embraer?   There is not even room for my jacket on the left hand side of the plane.
  25. Clueless casual travelers: (Sensing a trend now?) People – shoes come off, all metal and electronics out of pockets and liquids out of the bag.  It really is not that hard and by the way, look back up at #20 – we have been listening to them tell us this for the last 15 minutes straight.
  26. Barbie Ironing Boards: I paid good money to sleep in your hotel room.  Please provide me an ironing board that actually allows me to iron my shirt.
  27. Something forgotten at home: As hard as I try, there is always something I miss at home.  I get the text from my wife and just want to crawl into the fetal position.  I really could do without this.
  28. Booking 9 AM meetings that start EST when you are actually in PST: This one is completely self-inflicted but dear God, I have got to pay more attention to when a call starts relative to where I will be sleeping the previous night.
  29. Co-workers scheduling calls that start immediately after you land: I realize that the time was ‘free’ on my calendar but seriously, do I have to put an appointment on my calendar that says ‘walk through airport’.
  30. Rental Car Shuttle buses: I know it is impractical but man I wish every rental car pick-up was on airport property.
  31. Unrealistic per diems: I am not an extravagant traveler by any means but sometimes, the hotels that you can get for the company per diem are just not up to snuff.
  32. Expense reports: I know, I know. The aps that are available now make this way easier but I still do not know a single RoadWarrior who enjoys this process.
  33. Useless upgrades: I cannot tell you how many times I have been ‘upgraded’ to the suite level at hotels when I am checking in at 1:00 AM and checking out at 8:00 AM.  Thanks for the extra sitting space that I will not use.
  34. On Demand Movie Preview Channels: I never order them (I have Netflix after all) and as much as I like Mario Lopez, I really don’t need to see him every time I turn on the TV.
  35. Brown Food: Why is it that restaurants (hotel and airport restaurants in particular) serve mainly brown food?  Is it really that hard to make a salad?  There has to be more green than brown food out there, right?
  36. Promotional emails: From everybody.  I am pretty convinced that Southwest Airlines monitors your flight schedule and purposefully sends you an email while you are in flight so you will think about them when you land.
  37. Office get-together emails: It is just mean to send me an email about the leftover bagels/donuts/pizza/happy hour that is going on in the office today.
  38. Slow airport wi-fi: When Jerry Jones built the new Cowboy Stadium, he wanted to be sure that it had the bandwidth to support over 100,000 people posting to social media at the same time without lag.  Airport IT Directors, please take note.
  39. Checked bags: No one needs this drama and time suck.
  40. Worrying about any of this stuff: Life is too short to allow any of the above to affect you.  Love others as God loves you and enjoy the journey.

Hope you got a chuckle at one or two of the above.  See you on the road!

Sometimes you have to improvise

OK – I admit it, I am completely sick of the hotel gym with dumbbells that go through a whopping 50lbs (or in my latest adventure – 30 lbs) and the obligatory elliptical machine and (non-functional) treadmill.  It may just be the fact that I have been on the road a lot lately but it is getting old……fast.

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So you can imagine my elation when I walked into the gym at the hotel on the first leg of my most recent trip and saw her standing in the corner.  She was a 7 foot beauty.  Strong.  Lean.  Shiny.  The cable cross over machine of my dreams.

You mean I can actually do a pull up!?!?!

Oh how my expectations soared.  Pull ups, axe choppers, triceps extensions…….the possibilities were endless.

Or so I thought.

Until my dreams were crushed.  You see, the only attachment available for this wonderful piece of equipment was a straight bar.

What!?!!?   No rope?  No single handles?  No rowing handle?

How dare you crush my dreams!!!

It was time to improvise.  For a very brief moment I felt like Ed Harris in his portrayal of the NASA scientist in Apollo 13.   “OK Gentlemen.  Here is what they have in the capsule.  How do we make a square peg fit in a round hole?”  How do I make this work?  Then I went to work.  Scouring the room for resources.  What could I do?  What could I use?  And then, like a shining white light of salvation in the corner of the room I saw them.

gym

Towels!!

Your simple, everyday gym towel would come to my rescue.  Throughout my training I have often incorporated towels, gi belts and other fabrics into my workouts to train my grip.   This night was going to be all about using the towel to facilitate my workout.  With the way I feel today, I can tell you that I will be doing this on a regular basis.  My forearms are still on fire and the rest of my upper body is more sore (in all the right ways) than it has been in quite some time.

So how did I incorporate a towel(s) into the mix?  Here’s how.

Pull up – throw the towel over the bar and suddenly you have offset grip pull ups (these are no joke people).  Switch your hands and you have offset grip chin-ups or the one I hope to actually accomplish someday, towel grip pull ups.

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Crossover cable:  Triceps extension…done.  Upright rows….done.  Wood choppers…..done both up and down.  Weighted crunches…..done.   Bicep curls…..done.

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With dumbbells:  Need 70lbsers?  No problem, grab the 30’s and the 40’s and wrap the towel around the handles .  Now not only do you have 70lbs per hand but the weight will shift on you which engages all of the smaller stabilizing muscles.

Improved Ab work:  Ever seen those floor sliders to allow your feet to effortless glide across the floor almost eliminating friction?  Yeah, towels come close (double trick, hit up the breakfast buffet for a couple of paper/plastic plates instead of a towel).  Suddenly my abs are begging that we go back to the world of just trudging along on the treadmill.

So the next time you find yourself discouraged by either the type of equipment available or the condition of the equipment, think about the humble towel and how you may be able to put it to work for you.

See you on the road.

Flip-flops, Jeans and Mickey Mouse – a lesson in wardrobe

I have a confession to make, I am a bit obsessive compulsive when it comes to what I wear on a plane.  I make it my mission in life to make sure I am dressed comfortably before walking down the jet bridge.  I have changed in to “street” clothes in the restrooms of more airports this year than most people will visit in their lifetime and if being able to completely change outfits without any item of clothing or patch of skin hitting the bathroom floor were an Olympic sport, I would have a really good shot at medaling.

You see, I like to travel comfortably.  Really comfortably.

I would say that on 95% of the flights I take, I am in jeans, a t-shirt and flip-flops (assuming the weather permits).  It is what I am most comfortable in and actually what I feel most confident in.

flip flop

Those who travel with me on a regular basis have gotten used to my obsession but this was not always the case.  When I first started making this a habit, I often felt judged by both my coworkers and fellow travelers.  When you are in sales or service, you are always on.  Just because you left the client’s office does not mean you are ‘off stage’.   One of the women I used to work for was a fabulous leader and was keenly aware of this fact.  She was always put together and on point.  I think my habit of being in t-shirt actually really bothered her for a while – until we unexpectedly sat together with a client on a flight back from a conference.

There I was with two of the most influential personas in my industry, having an in depth conversation about trends in the industry, future advancements and speculating on the next generations of tools to come forth……..

And I am wearing a Mickey Mouse T-Shirt!!

mickey mouse

I literally wanted to crawl out of my skin (or at least that shirt).  Here I was, trying to make a name for myself and I am wearing a cartoon character across my chest.  I was left with a choice, cower and apologize for not being dressed ‘more appropriately’ or be confident in who I was rather than what I was wearing.

Of course the story has a happy ending and I managed to not make a fool of myself and in fact, that shirt spurred on conversations about our families, vacations and my obsession with the company that is Disney.  It also taught me a very important lesson, the clothes do not in fact make the man.  I firmly believe that the man makes the clothes. I was far more confident in jeans, flip-flops and a Mickey Mouse t-shirt on that plane than I had been just 4 hours early in a sports coat and tie.

The clothes do not make the man.  The man makes the clothes!!

Since then, I would like to think that not conforming to the khaki pants and blue blazer uniform of the typical business traveler has become somewhat of a trademark for me.  I even think that some of my clients/coworkers would be disappointed if showed up for a flight in anything but a t-shirt.  The message in all of this?

Confidence is more important than conformity.

I would rather lose a client/deal because I was transparent than win one because I put on a false front.  It really is that simple.

Life is too short to put perception ahead of transparency.  So travel in a t-shirt, or a bow tie, or yoga pants or a 3-piece suit.  Just make sure it reflects who you really are and the skin you are most comfortable in.

Can’t wait to see what you are wearing.

Sometimes you have to let your subconscious win

On my travels this week I found myself staying in a wonderful Marriott hotel in Hartford, CT.   I won’t even try and hide it, I am a hotel snob and will try and stay in a full service hotel any chance I get.

Yes the rooms are wonderful.  Yes, the concierge lounge is a great amenity but what I really look forward to is the gym.  I know if I am staying full service, there will be a full service gym as well.  I get legitimately excited knowing that I have all of my gym options available to me.

Full service gyms make me a happy traveler.

As my cab pulled in under the portico at “oh My God’ early this morning, I caught a quick glimpse of the stairs leading up to the Connecticut Convention Center next door.  Stairs that were clearly and loudly calling my name.  I have no idea why but I had an inkling then that I would be skipping the gym the following morning and heading up those stairs.  Again and again and again.

Stairs 2

Even though I was arriving late I made sure the alarm was set for enough time to do the workout in the gym that my heart was heart set against.  As I was appropriately adjusting my phone’s settings, I kept telling myself I could always sleep in and hit the great gym on the 22nd floor.  When the alarm finally went off at 7:00 AM I was already awake.  Time to get moving.

I promptly got dressed, had my coffee, checked emails and eventually headed up to the 22nd floor to check out the gym.  It was a great gym.  Cardio, weights, kettle bells, stretching space….the works but it was not enough.  No stairs.  No stares from the other travelers and folks walking to work wondering;

“Who is that guy and why does he hate himself so much to put himself through that!?!”

So after fully surveying the scene, I got back in the elevator and headed down to the lobby level and out the front door, walked next door and stared up at the stairs.

Then I started running.

Up 100 stairs.  Push up or dips at the top.  Run back down 100 stairs.  Squats or pistol squats at the bottom.  Up and down 20 times.  This was a workout I did alone.  There were no others there to lend that non-verbal supportive head nod like you get in San Diego (read about that run here).  Just me, 100 stairs and a goal – 2000 stairs and it was awesome.

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Sometimes the subconscious has to win.  Sometimes you have to skip the gym in order to hit the stairs.  Sometimes you just have to crush it.

My favorite travel things….

Anyone who travels at all knows that life is just easier when you can carry everything with you on the plane and skip the fun of the baggage carrousel.  There is no place I would rather be less than standing around watching the metal conveyor belt revolve around a carpeted island of futility and wasted time.  I avoid it at all costs.  It does not matter whether I am traveling for the day or for the week, you can bet I will be getting it all to fit in the overhead bin so I pay special attention to what I pack in my bag.  Suitcase space is premium real estate and has to be utilized well.

So what are the things that make the grade for me?

Here is my list of what holds special place in my carry on and why.  These are just a few of my favorite things (cue the edelweiss background music):

shoes
Vibram Five Finger Shoes:

This was probably the first product that I purchased specifically because of the way they travel and the one that I get the most comments on.  Vibrams to put it simply, are awesome and yes, I do run in them regularly.  Now I am not in the camp that is all about minimalist footwear or the camp that wears Five Finger shoes because they will help strengthen the smaller muscles in your feet.  For me, these are all about how much space they take up in a suitcase.  When you wear a size 11 shoe like I do, your tennis shoes take up a lot of space, even if you do stuff them with socks and underwear.  These take up less space than my flip flops and I really do love working out in them now.  I started on the space argument but now don’t think I would ever switch back to traditional shoes.  To shop for your own, click here.

jump rope

Jump Rope:

This is one that travels with me about 50% of the time based on the hotel gym I may be encountering.   All you need is about 10 sq ft of space with an 8 ft ceiling and you can get a great HIIT cardio workout in.  One thing to note, if you carry a weighted speed rope like I do, be prepared to be stopped by TSA about 50% of the time.  They are not used to seeing them and often confuse them with a club of some type.  I have never been stopped when I have carried my true rope with wooden handles though.

shaker bottle
Water bottle:

Seems simple enough but I did a whole blog post on just this about a year ago.  I know carry a ‘Premium’ bottle with me so that I can have both the benefit of tracking the water I intake as well as being able to utilize the shaker function.

TRX
TRX:

I LOVE MY TRX!!!  However it usually only travels with me when I know the hotel gym that I will be experiencing is beyond lackluster.  This one really does take up a lot of space but is totally worth it.  I use it routinely at home and on the road and you can get a GREAT workout with this single apparatus.  With the door mount, you don’t even have to leave the hotel room.  Best travel fitness investment I have ever made.

Snack bag:

You can read all about the contents here but I always travel with a snack bag, even day trips.  If I am going to invest my time and energy into making sure I get a good workout in, I am going to do everything I can to not sabotage it by making poor dietary choices if I can avoid them.   I always also include Shakeology in my bag as I want complete nutrition.

mouthpiece
Mouthpiece:

So this one is pretty specific to the martial artist but it does bring up a good point.  I love to train in martial arts, especially rolling BJJ.  One piece of equipment that is critical to preventing injury is wearing a mouthpiece so I travel with one everywhere I go.  A mouthpiece is custom fit to your mouth so it is not like you just go borrow one or pick one up at Walmart.  By having my mouthpiece, I can go roll at any school that will have me with little to no notice.  It lets me pursue one of my passions.  For you it may be a raquette or a club but bring along what you are passionate about so that if the opportunity arises (or you create it), you are not left with the excuse “It is too bad I did not have my……”

So there you have it, the list of my favorite things that may or may not be in your suitcase today.  What makes your cut?  What are the things you simply can’t travel without?

For full disclosure, I am not receiving any type of incentive from the companies that make or distribute these products, with the exception of Shakeology as I am a Beachbody Coach.

The Dreaded Day Trip

I have a love/hate relationship with the ‘Day Trip’.  I love the way they look on the calendar.  Morning flight, midday meeting, return flight the same day and finally sleeping in my own bed, all within a single day.  Heck, I can even tell my lovely wife that I will be “home that day”

The problem is I do not live my life on paper

As I write this, I am sitting on the first flight out to Chicago.  I will also be on one of the evening flights back in to Dallas tonight.  Nearly 6 hours of travel time for a 4 hour meeting, of which I am only leading an hour of.  It is days like this that make me want to banish the ‘Day Trip’ from my calendar forever, or at least severely restricting the geographies I am willing to schedule these life sucking journeys to.

You have to have a strategy in place to stay RoadWarrior fit!!

There are so many pitfalls that the Day Trip puts in your path from a health and fitness perspective.  They really are just evil.  Let’s take a look at them and how to avoid them.

Disturbed Sleep Schedule:

For me at least, a Day Trip involves a very early flight (today’s departure time was 6:43 AM) and a late return (I am landing at 10:00 PM).  That meant I was up at 4:30 and will not be heading to bed until probably around midnight assuming that there are no delays heading home.  That makes for a very long day and more importantly, for very little sleep.  There are thousands of studies that show the importance of sleep to both physical and mental health.  I rarely get my full allotment of sleep before or after a day trip.

Coping Strategy – Get to bed early the night before

I know you saw that one coming and to be truthful, I suck at this one but it is a must.  You know you are not going to sleep on the plane so make sure you get your Z’s in the night before.  Need help making this happen, click here

Lack of Exercise:

I truly wish I was the type of person who got up early in the morning and exercised but alas, I am not.  The only times I work out in the morning is when I either have a late afternoon flight or the weekend (and even then we are not talking about early mornings).  Packing so much travel time in one day often means I am breaking the first rule of being RoadWarrior fit:

Rule #1: Do something, ANYTHING, everyday!!

When you are already scheduled to wake up at 4:30 it is really hard to set that alarm and stick to it another 30-60 minutes earlier.  3:30 wake-up call just to get an exercise session in?  C’mon, not happening.

Coping Strategy – Plan for the down time

There are times I have been able to work out on a day trip.  I have been known to walk airports for the hour before my flight.  I know which airlines clubs have fitness facilities in them and this trip I even packed my workout clothes and shoes to get a workout in at the Hilton in O’Hare (great gym that is accessible from the terminal) but in over a decade of travel, THIS IS THE FIRST TIME I HAVE DONE THAT!!

hilton gym1

If you know you have a Day Trip in a particular week, plan to exercise around it.  None of us can or should do a true workout every day.  Your body needs down time to recover so use these days wisely.  Get a great workout in the day before (it will help you sleep also) and make sure you get one the next day.

Crazy Diet:

At 5:00 in the morning, I am not going to be breaking out the cookware to make the healthiest of breakfasts so I am usually grabbing something to go.  Now I am talking fruit and shakes, not Poptarts so let’s not get too crazy.  However that is usually followed up with a ‘working lunch’ (read: local sandwich shop or my favorite, Pizza) and a dinner at the airport.  Most of the time, this is breaking my last rule for staying RoadWarrior fit:

Rule #5:  Never eat somewhere that you could at home!!

In other words, I try and avoid the chains as they are about easily replicated food and very rarely about the quality nutrition we should be looking for.  That is not very easy to do when you are dining at the airport.  So very often I end up having a shake for breakfast, a protein bar for lunch (especially if I am presenting – it is really hard to present and eat at the same time) and another protein bar at dinner.  That may sound like the next fad diet but I can assure you, it is not good for you in the long run.

Coping Strategy – Get a good breakfast

You can have a great breakfast without waking the entire house up.  Prep your food the night before so it is ready to go in the morning.  I love breakfast tacos and these heat up in the microwave very easily.  Pair an English muffin smeared with Peanut Butter to a bowl of berries and greek yogurt.  You get the point but make sure this one meal is complete and at least you know you are starting the day well.

Sedentarism:

Yes, I just made that word up but take today as an example.  Between the car rides to and from the airports, two plane rides and the meeting with the client, I am sure I will be sitting for at least 12 hours today.  12 HOURS!!!  That is how you get DVT people, no really, it is.

Coping Strategy – Move every chance you get.

Pretty self explanatory.

It is Just Rude:

Picture for a moment my wife’s version of these trips.  She is awakened at 4:30 AM by me trouncing around the house getting ready to leave, the dogs waking up and being active with me.  She is then left to fend for herself with the boys all day including getting them ready and off to school, playing chauffer for various events, making and cleaning dinner, monitoring homework and being disciplinarian when needed.  Then at the end of the day, having me reenter life like the conquering hero right before (or sometimes well after) everyone heads off to bed.  Sounds like a great day, right?  Wrong.

Now, I understand the desire of parents of younger kids to be home in time to tuck their kids in to bed.  That also relieves some of the stress on your spouse if you can handle that portion of the day but my kids are teenagers.  I can assure you that they have NO DESIRE to have me tuck them in at night and the stressful part of the day is not bed time.

To put it simply, my wife hates Day Trips

Coping Strategy – Communicate

I have been known to just ask my wife if she would prefer a day trip or if I should just head out the night before.  I also try and make sure I have something in the crockpot that morning so that dinner is just that much easier for her.  Acknowledge that these trips are probably just as hard on your spouse as they are on you.  Believe me, they will appreciate the effort and acknowledgement.

So there is my argument against and my tips to help survive the Dreaded Day Trip.  I think everyone is healthier and happier if you can tag a night on somewhere (I prefer the front end of the trip) but if you can’t at least there are some ways to mitigate the damage.

Safe travels and I will see you on the road.