When's the last time you took a road trip? ;)
I recently traveled from Chico down to San Diego, covering about 1,200 miles from northern to southern California and back.
I had an amazing time on the trip:
- I spent quality time with family
- went swimming in the pool and the ocean
- saw dolphins
- relaxed on the porch every morning to drink my coffee
- rolled out my mat to practice yoga every day
- ate bomb fish tacos
- did three yoga adventure photo shoots (!)
- toured Stone Brewery in Escondido
- went bowling
- walked around the shops in Coronado
- saw San Diego's impressive skyline
- got a pedicure
- drank wine
- and (despite this long list) actually felt rested and relaxed like I was on vacation!
On this trip, I realized that there are a few travel essentials which can make my experience exponentially better, and help me feel more at home.
What are your go-to items to pack in your suitcase (besides clothing and toiletries, of course)?
Travel Essentials So I Can Relax and Have Some 'Me' Time
1. Spoonk™ Acupressure Mat. Seriously, this thing blows my mind. I was a little skeptical at first about the idea of acupressure and whether I'd notice a difference from using it; the first time I tried the mat, I slept better than I have in weeks, and all the pain I'd been experiencing in my neck and shoulder was gone after only 30 minutes!
You might be wondering, How does that thing work? Well, it's pretty sweet: the mat actually has 6210 acupressure stimulation points that, once pressed against troubled areas of the body, will increase circulation and relax stiff muscles and decrease pain. As you lie on the mat, not only do you allow yourself deep relaxation and stress relief, but your body also releases endorphins, giving you a more positive attitude and overall feeling of wellness.
Spoonk™ has an amazing deal going on this summer: you can use the discount code SPOONKSUMMER to save 10% on any order. And they have a great FAQ page on their website, too, if you want to learn more.
My new routine is to lie on the acupressure mat each afternoon for about 10-15 minutes for a little pick-me-up, and then also use it before bed for 30-40 minutes while I'm reading.
2. Skinny Coconut Oil. I got this awesome travel-size coconut oil bottle in my July Yogi Surprise box, and it couldn't have come at a better time. A while ago Sponsored Yogi Yani wrote about how awesome this brand of coconut oil is, and I was grateful to try it out. It is the BEST! I've had a thing for coconut oil for a while now, and often use it for abhyanga self-massage in the shower, on my legs after I shave, as a lip balm, or (ahem) as needed when I feel dry.
Somehow, every time I travel anywhere (even if it's to an area with humidity), my skin ends up feeling super thirsty. Having this little container of coconut oil at my bedside gave me the perfect opportunity to keep my skin smooth and hydrated. There's just something so relaxing about rubbing your feet at the end of a long day, plus this came in really handy when I got a little sunburned.
Highly recommend packing a little Skinny Coconut Oil in your suitcase next time you travel-- and they even have a tiny 2 oz. container that could fit in your purse!
3. Sleep essentials: earplugs, an eye mask, melatonin and bedtime essential oil. I haven't really talked about it much on the blog before, but I am a light sleeper. This can make it really tough to get enough rest when I travel. These go-to items help me sleep well and wake up feeling refreshed, and I use some of them at home as well as on-the-go, which means I can keep a familiar routine as I wind down for bed. If you're curious, I got the eye mask at Bed, Bath & Beyond, I love these Olly sleep gummies or melatonin from Nature's Bounty, and my favorite essential oil for sleep is Pillow Potion by Aura Cacia.
4. My Manduka yoga mat, Dharma Yoga wheel and foam roller. My yoga routine isn't the same without these bad boys. Of course, if you're only going on a short trip or you don't have space to bring your favorite yoga gear, you might have to forego having them along. For me, having my good mat was essential on this trip; I knew I would be practicing a lot of yoga and feeling pretty sore. The Dharma Yoga wheel is a game changer for feeling open and expansive in backbend postures. And the foam roller is just the most helpful in a hurts-so-good kind of way, especially after logging hundreds of miles in the car.
5. Ground Peet's coffee and a French press. Because weak coffee made in a coffee pot just ain't my style. ;)
Ever feel like you need a vacation from your vacation? ;)
Just like in regular life, it can be so easy on vacation to become swept up in a busy schedule and a ton of activities
By packing a few essential self-care items in my suitcase, I was reminded to take some time to slow down, relax, actually let go of any stress, and return afterward feeling refreshed.
I'd love to hear - what are your favorite travel essentials?
PS Vacation or trip? Made me laugh out loud.