|Posted by BGF FitnessSite on May 15, 2017 at 4:20 PM|
Perhaps I should start off by saying that I am not a travel blogger. This post is not so much about places you should travel to, hotels you should stay at, or the clothes you should wear while traveling. This is about the chemical and energetic experience of travel, the proven health benefits, and the fuel added to your fire while breaking out of your day-to-day routine, and experiencing a new physical environment, culture, and way of life – even for a short period.
This is me trying to convince YOU to travel more.
Travel expands the mind. It can provide a shift in our viewpoint and desires. Travel can deepen our gratitude and appreciation for the lives we have, or provide the motivation to proactively make changes if needed. Gratitude and ownership, I have learned, are fundamental.
Many of us have fear or limiting beliefs related to money, travel, and moving away from our usual environment or routine, but I’d like to be the first person to tell you (just in case no one has) that you CAN afford it.
Travel is a worthwhile INVESTMENT in your health and well-being.
Your KIDS can go with you, and the ENTIRE family (including YOU) can have a good time.
You won’t feel GUILTY about the money and time spent after it’s all said and done. If you’re not convinced, check this out…
Need some more real life inspiration? Click below to check some of my favorite travel blog posts from around the net…
It took me 28 years to make it out of the country. Why? I couldn’t tell you, but it didn’t matter that it took so long, because I felt blessed to finally make it out, and now travel is something I’m committed to doing as often as possible. Who knows, this time next year I may be blogging about how we moved out of the US and live simple on an Island somewhere.
Any who, the first country I traveled to was Nassau, Bahamas by cruise.
Cruises are a great option for families for a number of reasons.
1. Food - the thing we usually spend big bucks on while traveling - is included. There are plenty of options while on board and most cruise lines will take special requests prior to your trip. For example, I was able to request gluten free meals in advance.
2. There’s childcare. The kid’s camp was open from 9:00am-10:00pm with breaks for dinner, and children are allowed to stay on board while parents head to destinations.
3. You can drive there. It really doesn’t matter how good of a deal we find on flights. Tickets for six people add up really fast. Our first cruise left from Miami, and our second from New Orleans. We rented a car and road tripped to our port of sail for both.
4. You can book a trip in advance and make payments. Let’s say you book a $2500 cruise for your family of five about nine months in advance. That means you’d need to pay around $275 per month to make it happen as opposed to dropping the whole $2500 at one time. Whatever the case, they can be booked far enough out to be manageable for your budget.
5. Passports shouldn't be a problem. We have Passports, but you don't need one to travel on a cruise so long as you bring the required documentation and identification along with you.
Here's a bit of what we did during our trips...
In the Bahamas we took the kids off the ship early, walked through the city, visited the beach, and of course talked to people, because everyone has a story to share. On the way, one of the local business owners told us about the historical significance of the place we were walking through, Pompey Square.
“On this site, slaves were bought and sold. In 1830, Pompey led a revolt on the island of Exuma, in the Bahamas. Pompey along with other slaves were arrested and brought to Nassau. Rumors of freedom were instrumental in motivating their claim for land and setting up their own commonage property.”
The history represented a lot to the gentleman we were speaking with, and it was odd to me that today, the square hosts a children’s splash pad. A testimony to how deep history and origins can be hidden from plain site, and isn’t it amazing that we can experience that history by speaking to the people?
After that, we headed back to the boat to eat lunch, drop the little people off at kid’s club, and then returned back to the Island sans sidekicks.
We then did the only logical thing to do…
Rented a scooter and road the Island for about $60 bucks. Big fun, small price.
We try to move away from the hustle and bustle of the tourist areas to get a chance to experience the environment and culture.
In Jamaica, we took a two-hour bus ride to Ochos Rios, hiked Duns River Falls, and then ate lunch on the beach for about $70.
We rented cars for the day in Cozumel and found our way to Ancient Mayan Ruins. The price, about $65 bucks for the entire day.
Doesn’t seem so bad right?
Now I know I’ve promised you some facts about travel and your health as well, so here they are…
1. Promotes Heart Health – “When you travel, you interact with novel stimuli in the form of new people, cultures, situations, and experiences, which can contribute to the delayed onset of degenerative disease.”
2. Keeps the Mind Sharp – “According to information gathered from the Framingham Heart Study, a landmark study that began in 1948 and spanned over the course of 20 years, women who vacationed only every six years or less were nearly eight times more likely to develop heart disease or have a heart attack compared to women who traveled at least twice a year.”
3. Enhances Creativity – “According to the study, the better you are at engaging and adapting to new cultures, the more creative and professionally successful you will be. In order to actually enhance creativity, the author stresses the importance of immersing yourself in new cultures, rather than simply changing your physical location.”
4. Relieves Stress and Boosts Mental Health – “You can experience a boost in happiness even while planning a trip (up to eight weeks before setting off to your destination). Having something to look forward to, even if it’s a two-day trip, can feel rewarding. Vacationers also likely experience less stress and more satisfaction with their overall mood and outlook after returning from a trip compared to non-travelers.”
5. Shifts Perspective – “Travel broadens your perspectives, not only of the world but also of yourself. When traveling you may often find yourself in situations that you wouldn’t be in otherwise. You are faced with the reality of living outside your comfort zone, which, as uncomfortable as it is, gives you the opportunity to transform how you see things. Psychologists point out that people often have epiphanies while traveling, as they are able to view their problems from a more detached view.”
6. Increases Connection to Others and Self – “Research has shown that when you get out of your social comfort zone and immerse yourself into cultures different from your own, you strengthen your personal identity, including your values and beliefs, and increase your confidence.”
So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and book that trip.
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