Why taking a post trip vacation is necessary for my chronic body

Why taking a post trip vacation is necessary for my chronic body

By Cynthia


My chronic life is unpredictable.  What knocks me down one week might not the next.  My energy level and physical ability vary on a daily basis.

The same is true while traveling, I never know how often I will be able to participate in activities or outings or if I will spend most of the trip in bed.  Nor do I know how much time my body is going to require to recover from each getaway.

For the average person going on vacation equates to escaping their regular schedule for a week or weekend and picking right back up where they left when they returned.  It’s a completely different ball game for the chronically ill.

Many of us are exhausted before we hop in the car or board our flights.  The time spent doing laundry, packing, and planning our excursions decreases and sometimes depletes our already limited energy supply. Then there is the trip itself.

No matter how relaxing of a getaway I plan, it is always tiring for my body because of the prep and traveling involved.  One thing that I can always count on is the fact that my body will require some amount of time to recover before I can resume my “normal” life.

There is no rhyme or reason for how much time is needed, sometimes I am back in action within a day and other times it takes days or weeks to recover.  Prior to learning how to vacation with my chronic illnesses in mind, I would be knocked down for months afterward.

You can learn more about the changes I have made to decrease my after vacation downtime by clicking here.


Although I haven’t been able to eliminate the need for an after vacation holiday, I have found ways to make it easier on myself and others.  Instead of just clearing my calendar for the time spent away from home, I also clear it for the week following.

Sometimes I need less and sometimes I need more, but a week gives me time to see if I will need to extend my after holiday break.  By doing this I also reduce the stress and worry of needing my body to recover faster than it is ready to and decreases how often I cancel plans.

Planning a post-trip break allows me to relax, address new pain, decrease the pain that I made worse while away, and slowly adjust back to what my body considers normal.

I spend my post-holiday downtime allowing my body to rest when it wants to; this may mean taking multiple naps or following an undesirable sleep schedule until my body gets back into its groove.  This time is also for replenishing my body of what I may have denied it while away.  I drink more water, eat healthier, and listen to its needs.  Long hot baths and a relaxing massage are musts for me!

Planning post trip recovery breaks has made my returns tolerable and pleasurable.  Do you plan an after vacation holiday or do you find yourself frustrated by trying to force your body into its normal routine?

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Published by Cynthia Covert

Diagnosed in 2001 with psoriasis, followed by fibromyalgia, psoriatic arthritis, endometriosis, and later a botched hysterectomy turned her world upside down. Cynthia shares her experience, advice, and tips for how to make life with chronic pain easier and less painful.

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