Remaining healthy while traveling for business is a top concern of frequent business travelers. Our routines are wildly upended when it comes to business travel with long flights, restaurant meals, and late meetings replacing what might be a good night’s sleep, regular yoga practice, and home-cooked dinners.
That said, business travel is a strategic lever for growth and a critical part of building a thriving business. And as our business traveler survey discovered, employees who have the opportunity to travel for work also report feeling more empowered, engaged, and energized in their jobs. The goal, therefore, is to empower employees to live and eat well while on the road.
In addition to providing flexible travel policies and 24/7 365 support via live travel agents just a chat, email or call away, there are programs that companies can put in place to support their road warriors in prioritizing wellness and self-care. Research shows that as business travelers’ resiliency and moral grows so does their job satisfaction and productivity.
Thankfully, travel brands are starting to align their offerings around customers’ wellness needs. Airlines are partnering with meditation apps, hotels are offering wellness packages, and airports around the world now offer nap lounges. With a wealth of options available, business travelers have the freedom to choose brands that help them accomplish their personal health goals while on the road.
Eating well on a business trip ultimately comes down to personal habits and choices. Although there might be a large dinner where wine and bread baskets flow freely, business travelers have the opportunity to make smart choices to feel more energized and healthy during and after their travels.
Prep healthy snacks before departure: One of the easiest ways to eat healthier on the road is preparing your own food. You can pack baked vegetables and skip a meal on the plane as well as pack plenty of snacks for those in-between moments.
Bring a water bottle: Staying hydrated is one of the most important steps to maintaining your health while traveling for business. You’ll be more likely to make healthier choices when well-hydrated and snack less.
Avoid sugar: Business travel can be stressful, and it is easy to reach for a sweet snack at the airport or fall prey to the candy bowl in the office. Remember those healthy snacks you packed? Making proactive choices will help business travelers avoid temptation and return home feeling better about their time away.
Stick to a schedule: Although business travel remains a shift from your usual schedule, try to keep regular meals (and exercise) a priority. By eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner — no matter how small — on a regular schedule , you will keep your metabolism rolling while minimizing the need and desire for last-minute snacking.
Limit alcohol: Happy hours, long dinners, and post-conference meet-ups are a normal part of business travel. We believe in taking advantage of all opportunities that give you time with clients and colleagues, but that doesn’t mean matching co-workers drink for drink. Choose beverages with low alcohol-by-volume and sip a still or sparkling water with lemon in between each drink.
Being conscious of how you take care of your body doesn’t have to mean missing even a moment of meals, meetings, and conversation while traveling for business. That said, it helps to internalize a concept of what ‘healthy’ means to you before the plane takes off. A culture of conscious decisions and empowered wellness is something we work on diligently at TripActions.
TripActions hosted its Global Wellness Week across nine offices to explore what it means to eat healthy, remain calm, and keep our bodies moving while traveling for work.
Each office started the week with a company breakfast filled with nutritious food on Monday morning. Employees also enjoyed morning smoothies later in the week. There were massage therapists in every office available to employees - a proven method to reduce stress, improve sleep, and relieve muscle tension and pain.
At our headquarters in Palo Alto, TripActions team members cycled on a bike-powered smoothie machine for their morning boost. There were daily challenges where team members competed to complete the most squats, push ups, and burpees. We even had yoga classes taught by our very own Customer Success Manager Michelle Williams and Director of Corporate Communications Krystine Dinh.
The New York office explored the idea of mental resilience on Tuesday with Mindfulness & Stress Resilience Training hosted by mindfulness coach Will Schneider. Team members also met in the mornings and evenings for classes at Barry’s Bootcamp. On Friday, team members took a break from their desks for a short run.
In London, TripActions employees had the opportunity to take a self-defense class where they could stretch their muscles while also learning tips and strategies to protect themselves.
Being there in person is powerful, but being there in person feeling strong, healthy and happy — is the key to real productivity.