Sticking to Your Morning Routine when Traveling

Even if you’ve managed to get your morning routine down when you’re at home, what happens when you have to spend time away in an entirely different environment to what you, and your routine, are used to? Can you stick to your morning routine when traveling, or does it evaporate faster than you can say “Tell me more about the minibar?”

Sticking to our morning routine when we’re on the road can feel like an almost impossible task, so we instead often just go with the flow when traveling, falling out of our regular routine and into some unhealthy habits.

But we learned that it’s entirely possible to keep your morning routine in place when you travel, or at the very least to have a travel-ready routine that you can use on the road. In our upcoming book we dedicate a whole chapter to people who have mastered the art of sticking to their morning routine when traveling. We will share some of their advice with you now:

Do Some Smart Scheduling Ahead of Time

Schedule your flights to make sure your morning routine isn’t disrupted. Or, if you know you sleep well on planes, schedule them so you travel overnight and land at your destination relatively early in the morning. This way you can enjoy an active out-of-doors morning routine from the moment you disembark.

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During this time remember to stay well rested, even if you can only catch a glimpse of shut eye here and there. Peter Balyta, president of Education Technology at Texas Instruments, told us that as he travels a lot, he sets timers every time he goes to sleep. “On the road, I make it a point to find time to rest, even in short intervals—especially when I’m working through jet lag.”

Working Out of a Hotel Room Can Actually Make You More Productive

This may sound counterintuitive but it actually makes perfect sense. Andy Hayes, a premium tea seller, brought this idea to our attention when we interviewed him. He noted: “I find hotels to be a great place for quiet, mindful morning moments, as there is no temptation to clean out the refrigerator or reorganize my desk.”

How true is that? If you work from home, or you work from an office that you spend enough time in that it could be considered a second home, there are so many things we can find to do in a standard workday if we’re looking for something to procrastinate on. But a hotel room? A hotel room limits that significantly.

Respect Your At-Home Routine, While Enjoying Your New Environment

There are likely certain parts of your at-home routine that are more difficult than others to translate into a travel-ready routine. If you enjoy squeezing lemon juice into your water every morning, this can conceivably be replicated on the road (you can take lemons with you, if you’re not flying, or pick them up from a grocery store the night before), but it’s a hassle to do so.

At the same time, if your at-home breakfast is something simple, and your at-home morning workout (such as running, swimming, or weight training) can be replicated in your new destination, you should do all you can to stick to these, while at the same time enjoying the unique feel your new environment will bring to your morning. Back to Peter Balyta:

“My job requires that I travel all over the world. When I’m traveling, I skip the restaurant breakfast to ensure I’m maintaining the same breakfast routine as at home. I’ve exercised in fully kitted gyms fit for royalty in the UK, and outdoor Tai Chi courts in Shanghai with ninety-year-old locals.”

For more tips from us, and our interviewees, on how to stick to your morning routine when traveling, pre-order My Morning Routine (Portfolio/Penguin) today!

Meet our Book

Whether you want to boost your productivity, implement a workout or meditation routine, or just learn to roll with the punches in the morning, our brand new book has you covered.

Today’s most talented creatives and businesspeople share their secrets to unlocking greater energy, focus, and calm—starting first thing in the morning.

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