THINGS FLIGHT ATTENDANTS WANT YOU TO KNOW BEFORE YOU BOARD
1. Drink before you go.
The humidity on planes is typically around an arid 10%. Dry air makes Heather headachy and groggy, so preflight, she downs at least 12 ounces of water.
2. Create a catnap kit.
For sweet dreams at 30,000 feet, stow these items in your carry-on: a neck pillow, noise-canceling headphones, and an eye mask with built-in eye cavities to block out light without smudging your mascara (try ones fromdreamessentials.com or flight001.com).
3. Roll out stress.
To nix neck and back aches, try this in-your-seat stretch: Lightly squeeze the top of your left trapezius muscle (it runs between your shoulder and the base of your skull) while turning your head to the right. Repeat on the other side.
4. Take a hike.
Every hour, walk the length of the cabin to prevent blood from pooling in your feet (which causes them to puff up) and to ward off clots, something you're at greater risk for if you take oral birth control, are pregnant, or are on a flight longer than eight hours.
5. Skip the free OJ.
Sugary sips from the cart can lead to a mid-flight crash that can make you cranky, so bring a less-sweet homemade green juice. Once you're past security, grab one, like Evolution Fresh's Sweet Greens at Starbucks, which has half the sugar of OJ.
6. Hit the ground and run.
If you don't belong to a national gym chain, pick fitness-savvy hotels: The Kimpton chain offers no-charge bikes to ride and free in-room yoga mats; for five dollars, Westin Hotels will lend you New Balance shoes and clothing for your stay.
7. Watch the clock.
Stays on local time. If you're crossing time zones for a single night. For longer trips, stay up until 10pm local time -- then in the morning, go out in the sun for 15 minutes to help reset your body clock.
8. Have perspective.
Don't stress about cancellations. To avoid feeling frazzled by the rebooking process, call customer service or reach out via Facebook or Twitter; these methods often elicit the fastest response.
9. Turn off the TV.
Rather than zombie-watching reruns, do stuff you normally put off (cleaning out your e-mail inbox, writing thank-you cards). Make your grocery list for the week or plans your social schedule, things you procrastinate doing at home.
10. Don't snack on land.
The pressure changes on flights can make you nauseous. The science-backed why: Gas expands in your gut when you ascend, causing a puffed-out belly and potential pain. To sidestep sickness, eat mid-flight or nibble ginger (try Gin Gins ginger candy, $8 for 2 packs, amazon.com).