A checklist for the weary PR traveler

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Airport security lines, that extra five pounds that leads to an extra $ 10 dollars of luggage fees—not to mention the extra five pounds you gain from client
meetings on the go.

Traveling weighs on you, PR pro.

I’m here to take some of that weight off. In response to a recent article on by Arik Hanson, here’s your new travel checklist.

Schedule some downtime

Traveling for business can easily make a typical day hours longer. Why? Because your plane didn’t have reliable Wi-Fi. Because you might as well churn out
that press release before tomorrow’s meetings. So, just keep on working, right?

Prepare for the inevitable lack of reliable Wi-Fi. Anticipate that the cab you take from the airport in Queens to your hotel in Manhattan might take longer
than expected. Try to check a few projects off your list before traveling.

Schedule time to visit a museum, take a walk, or meet a friend. Even a short break can help improve creativity. It’s a win/win.

Eat for health and energy

Pack fresh fruit, protein bars, and nuts for plane snacks. You can find healthy options at most airport stores, too.
Starbucks has a number of healthy breakfast and on-the-go options, and it’s everywhere. At meetings, choose a healthy option. Opt for a lean protein, some
whole grains, and veggies. Choosing health should not be polarizing.

I do treat myself to my “conference cookie” at Ragan conferences. I know it’s coming, and I know when, so I’m less likely to indulge throughout the trip.

Sneak in a workout

Create a quick workout, and get to it every morning for a half-hour. (Yes, you have time for this.)

Check out these hotel workouts here and here.

You can do all of the above in your hotel room, too, while watching the news, you multitasker, you.

Try this list of the 64 best health and fitness apps of 2013.

Instead of sitting while waiting for a flight, go on a brisk walk with your luggage. (No moving sidewalks allowed!)

Buck the norm. Schedule a walking meeting. Steve
Jobs did this. Aristotle allegedly did, as well.

Moral: You don’t have to get sweaty to get moving.

Make the most of time spent waiting

I can’t make security lines move faster, but life can be infinitely interesting.

In a security line? Strike up a conversation with the person next to you. I did this on my way to presenting at a Ragan social media workshop in Calgary. A
gentlemen and I were playfully commiserating over the lucky few who got randomly selected for a hand swab test and got to bypass a terribly long line. The
security guard heard us; guess who moved to the front of the line.

[RELATED:

Ragan’s new distance-learning site houses the most comprehensive video training library for corporate communicators.
]

On the tarmac? Take a quick nap (I love doing this) or check some easy tasks off your to-do list.

In the air without Wi-Fi? Brainstorm with pen and paper. Work on a PowerPoint presentation. Or read a magazine such as Inc.com or Wired to get your
creativity flowing.

Don’t sacrifice sleep

As mentioned above, find sneaky opportunities to nap. In the cab on the way to the airport (I schedule realllly early flights), when taking off, etc.

Exercising and eating right on the road will make the little sleep that you do get really delicious.

Manage your stress—don’t let it manage you

Again, good diet, naps, and a bit of exercise will alleviate some of that stress. Try breathing exercises when stressed. Bring your iPod, and listen to a
few favorite songs to decompress.

Take a piece of home with you

Find ways to make your hotel homey. A co-worker brings her own sheets because she finds them more comfortable. Bring pictures of your kids or family.
(Better yet, schedule a quick face time date.)

What are your top tips for making travel less taxing? 

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