How Travel Has Helped Me Cope With the Coronavirus Pandemic

While I feel like I probably travel more than the average American, by no means would I consider myself an expert on travel (whatever that even means). However, I’ve chosen to travel to some off-the-beaten path destinations, at least for an American, and this has ultimately changed me forever as a person. I was thinking recently how travel has impacted how I’m dealing with Coronavirus, specifically not being able to travel or leave my house except to run or go grocery shopping but also all of the trickle-down effects of travel on my life.

By traveling to tiny towns in Chile, Costa Rica, Peru, Austria, Germany, and other places where the locals didn’t speak much if any English, travel has helped me become more resilient and to deal with issues that arise. Travel has also shown me that life often doesn’t turn out as we plan and we’ll be much happier if we learn to go with the flow. Instead of losing my temper or panicking when I got lost or couldn’t figure out something because of the language barrier, I would take a deep breath and try to figure it out. When my travel plans for April were cancelled because of the pandemic, sure I was sad my vacation wasn’t going to happen, but I knew it was better that way and eventually I will be able to travel safely.

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Although we missed a connecting flight to Malta, we eventually made it to this incredible country

I’ve learned to make the best of what I may find in a grocery store and figure out how to make meals for my family with what is on the shelves. One of my favorite things to do when I’m in a foreign country is to see what their grocery stores have to offer and how much things cost in stores. It’s always been an adventure and more times than not, I’ve ended up with some pretty delicious meals out of what I’ve found on the shelves. I may not have been able to fully read the labels, but that’s just added to the adventure. At least in the US, I can read the labels (unless the food is imported). I have been to countries where they routinely have had shortages of things like toilet paper, with the difference being due to hoarders in the US and more of a routine problem with supply in other countries.

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This market in Peru was HUGE and quite the experience to walk around

One of the things I love to do as a stress-reliever is run outside, whether I’m on vacation or at home. I can do it virtually anywhere, although there are places where I would not run for safety reasons. Another bonus is all I need are my running shoes and appropriate running clothes. I can run outside or on a treadmill if running outside is not an option (assuming there’s a treadmill I can use). If I can’t run, I can do body weight exercises like lunges, squats, core work, and push-ups. I can also make up my own yoga routine no matter where I am. Being able to exercise on my own while traveling and at home has been a huge asset to my well-being and overall health and something I’ve always been grateful to have in my life but perhaps even more so during this pandemic.

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Some of the stunning water views I got to enjoy while running in Hawaii

I’ve learned that family members need a break from each other every now and again. When you’re traveling with family members, you’re in close proximity to one another for days on end and even the best of us can get tired of all of that one-on-one time. This is one reason why I’m such a huge fan of staying at Airbnb properties, because if we’re staying in a house, we can stretch out a bit more, have a kitchen to cook some of our own meals or just snack if we’re hungry and have a place to store our food, and usually we have more than one bathroom (although certainly not always). We all like to have some time on our own to catch up with friends through various social media apps, listen to a podcast or music, or just read a book in a quiet room to decompress. Being stuck at home for weeks on end while the Coronavirus pandemic has been going on has reminded me what a good idea it is to give family members a break from one another.

I’m sure there are more things that travel has shown me to help deal with the Coronavirus pandemic, but these are the first things to come to my mind. Are there aspects of travel or other parts of your life that have helped you deal with the pandemic? If so, I’d love to hear about them.

Happy travels (someday),

Donna

 

 

Author: runningtotravel

I'm a long distance runner with a goal of running a half marathon in all 50 states in the US. I also love to travel so I travel to other places when I'm not running races. Half the fun is planning where I'm going to go next!

9 thoughts on “How Travel Has Helped Me Cope With the Coronavirus Pandemic”

  1. Thank you for sharing~what great things travel has taught you! Although I have not traveled extensively and exclusively for a couple of years, the above things you mentioned have also aided my isolation. Having lived in my R.V. for going on 4 years, I’ve learned to “make do” with little, “fix” the broken things, truly let go of what I didn’t need to have, I was used to small space so I can’t just go buy in “bulk” anyway; therefore, I would never slip to the “hoarding” side (LOL). Living this lifestyle helped me become adaptable to change. And the break from the family~I understand. Probably what has motivated me more than anything, besides getting to hike and get outdoors, is simply seeing family connect with one another. I begin each day the way I did pre-Covid~meditation, yoga, mindfulness, and staying active. Keep running and stay safe! Thank you again for such a great read! 💚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh wow! How have you dealt with everything going on now living in an R.V.? Do you primarily spend your time at state parks or somewhere else like BLM land? I saw an article about how much more difficult it’s been for people who live the Van life and I can imagine it’s also true for people like you living in an R.V. Meditation, yoga, mindfulness, and staying active are all excellent ways to help stay healthy both physically and mentally right now. Thank you for your kind words.

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      1. Hello again, friend! I was due to work at an R.V. park in Fairbanks, AK. And I’m actually happy to have taken a workkamping job in my home near Branson, MO. It’s really quite well for us that get to “stay put”. For my “on the road” friends, many have had to stay quarantined in one spot or if they are fortunate enough to have a “stick and bricks” home, they have gone back. I’m fortunate to be near stores, hiking trails, and close to home. Some of our out of state workers will have to quarantine. But my workcamp family that lives here, well,….we have all huddled in together since the beginning. To give you an idea, this county has about 55,000 individuals and only 7 confirmed cases. Branson is a tourist area so it seems like a ghost town. But for the most part, we have been blessed to be safe. Thank you for commenting and I love following your blog! I’ve not been very good at reading lately, so I’m striving to get better! Take care and be safe!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Being able to continue working and do my workouts/running has helped me keep a more normal routine which has helped make this more bearable. The loss of coaching has been a tough pill to swallow, but I’ve used the extra time in the afternoon to start a new strength training program with longer workouts so I’ve tried to turn something bad into something beneficial for myself.

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    1. Excellent point- keeping to a routine is extremely helpful. I’m sure it has been difficult not being able to coach and interact with the kids on a regular basis. Good for you for turning that extra time into a positive thing!

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  3. I never thought about how travel makes you resilient. You DO have to figure things out on the fly often when you travel off the beaten path. I can’t wait until we are both able to be back on the road again. I am getting itchy feet! 🙂

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