squareJuly 2007 Newsletter

Healthy Travel Network :: Travel Fitness


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Crossing the Equator

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Dear Fellow Business Traveler,

In today’s shrinking world, where everything seems closer than ever because of the instant and constant communication options available, we sometimes take for granted how different other parts of the world are.  Even if you are used to traveling great distances east-west, there are other concerns that need to be taken into account if you are traveling between the northern and southern hemispheres.  In this month’s newsletter, we address some of the topics that need to be considered for this type of travel. 


You should also check out our February 2007 Newsletter, International Travel Considerations for more information about major trips.

To Your Health, 
Healthy Travel Network

squareTravel between the Northern and Southern hemispheres.

Traveling from the northern hemisphere of earth to the southern, or vice versa, is considerably different than just traveling from one continent to another in the same hemisphere.  Even for seasoned travelers there are important things to consider, especially for fitness minded individuals and sports enthusiasts. 


Obviously, there are major time zone considerations when traveling east-west and issues like jet lag can have an effect on you.  But, there is even more to think about when crossing the equator that most people don't think about.   For instance, your sleep cycles may not only be affected by changes between time zones but also due to difference in the length of the days and nights.


Then, there’s the weather.  Most everybody knows that the north and south hemispheres have the exact opposite seasons.  And, it’s easy enough to pull up weather.com or any number of other resources available online to find out the forecasted temperature precipitation for your destination.  But, that very basic information does give you the whole picture.  Just as Florida is more likely to have hurricanes and California is more likely to experience earthquakes, other parts of the world have different natural weather that we are not used to.  It is always best to do as much research as possible on a destination that you have never been for so you can properly plan for your trip. 


In terms of athletic or fitness considerations, there are definitely things you need to account for.  Let’s say you’re going to Chili in the summer (here) and are excited because you will get to hit the slopes while you are there.  Well, usually before any seasonal sports such as skiing and snowboarding in the winter, or water sports in the summer, we have time to properly prepare for the different sports.  But if you're traveling between the northern and southern hemispheres, you may go from summertime to wintertime in a day. 


If you haven’t been keeping your body in "on season" shape, jumping right into an activity you haven’t had time to get ready for can lead to serious injuries.  Pre season conditioning should be done all year round in order to keep connective tissue and muscles from sustaining injury.


In addition to the potential for acute injuries, the common cold, flu and other typical illnesses can be more prevalent when traveling between time zones due to lack of sleep, unclean air within airliners, stress, etc., but this is even more true when there are all of these to consider plus traveling between hemispheres and having sudden climate changes to deal with.


If you plan ahead and prepare yourself properly before your trip, you will enjoy it that much more.  Safe travels.


We’d love to hear from all of you.  Tell us your favorite city to run in and you favorite route.  Or share the most memorable run you’ve had.  This will be a good way to exchange ideas and help other travelers with your experience.  Just send us an e-mail to customerservice@healthytravelnetwork.com.

squareMore Helpful Information

For more information on being properly prepared for traveling to other hemispheres, visit the following websites.

:: Safe Travel’s page on traveling to hot and cold climates.


:: The CDC’s pages on extreme heat and extreme cold.           
Travel Fitness Blog
Eat Your Fruits and Veggies
Comparing Diets: Which is the Best for You?
Hotel Delivery of Healthy Foods
Get a Good Night's Sleep

Great Links to Check Out
Safe Travel : Hot and Cold Climates
CDC : Extreme Heat
CDC : Extreme Cold