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2019 Camino Guides

Time Shifting

Camino(s) past & future
I have walked part of the Camino Frances and plan to start over in April 2018.
#1
I live on the East Coast of the US and therefore lose 6 hours when traveling to Spain. In order not to be a complete wreck on the first few days of my camino, I attempt to "time shift" while still at home. I do this by getting up 5 minutes earlier every morning for 36 days prior to departure (and of course going to bed earlier every night). This has me getting up at 4am by my departure date (10am in Spain). This leaves me only 3 hours to adjust to once I arrive.

Still, I hate doing it. Does anyone else out there have a better tecnique, a magic pill, whatever, for overcoming the time difference? Since I only have two weeks in which to hike, I cannot afford to lose time on the front end by sleeping in.

Thanks for any suggestions and Buen Camino.

Paula
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#2
Does anyone else out there have a better technique
Start right away. There is nothing like exercise in the sunshine to reset your clock. Avoid an afternoon nap. Also, not too much liquor in the evening. It tends to dehydrate you just when need to be helping your body chemistry. I think you will keep the jet lag under two days.
 

Teresafun

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Del Norte Sept 2018
#4
I live on the East Coast of the US and therefore lose 6 hours when traveling to Spain. In order not to be a complete wreck on the first few days of my camino, I attempt to "time shift" while still at home. I do this by getting up 5 minutes earlier every morning for 36 days prior to departure (and of course going to bed earlier every night). This has me getting up at 4am by my departure date (10am in Spain). This leaves me only 3 hours to adjust to once I arrive.

Still, I hate doing it. Does anyone else out there have a better tecnique, a magic pill, whatever, for overcoming the time difference? Since I only have two weeks in which to hike, I cannot afford to lose time on the front end by sleeping in.

Thanks for any suggestions and Buen Camino.

Paula
I took melatonin on the plane to help me shift time zones. Coming from Alaska. It helped a lot. It’s natural
 

Iriebabel

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances April (2018)
Camino Del Norte for April (2019) possible Primitivo
#6
I live on the East Coast of the US and therefore lose 6 hours when traveling to Spain. In order not to be a complete wreck on the first few days of my camino, I attempt to "time shift" while still at home. I do this by getting up 5 minutes earlier every morning for 36 days prior to departure (and of course going to bed earlier every night). This has me getting up at 4am by my departure date (10am in Spain). This leaves me only 3 hours to adjust to once I arrive.

Still, I hate doing it. Does anyone else out there have a better tecnique, a magic pill, whatever, for overcoming the time difference? Since I only have two weeks in which to hike, I cannot afford to lose time on the front end by sleeping in.

Thanks for any suggestions and Buen Camino.

Paula
I live in Florida and when travelling to Europe camino or not...I take the night flight arriving in the morning the next day then give myself at least two extra days to catch up on sleep. For my first camino I flew to Barcelona and spent two days there before continuing by train to Pamplona where I spent one full day then bus to SJPDP. I had another good night sleep except for a brief interruption from the drunk pilgrims in the next room o_O. This gave me ample time to adjust before starting the camino. Hope this helps, as it works for me
 
Camino(s) past & future
Travel318
#7
Grt an ambien prescription from your Dr. Take an ambien once you’ve had your flight meal. Sleep on the plane, stay up whrn you arrive until normal bedtime. Start the next day. Adrenalin and excitement get you through the day. When you get to your first stop, relax, eat, sleep and you’ll be good to go. Keep it simple!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Moissac to Santiago Spring 2005 was the first foray.
#9
Jet lag doesn't really work like that - it is species location that is the heart of it, not what time it is or when you get up - move quickly to a different part of the planet - east or west - and your geo-location is out until the body re-adjusts - we are in sync with sun and moon and tides and the magnetic field .. you can lessen the effects but cannot cheat it - unless you come by ship that is ;)
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2014, CF 2017,
#10
I spent almost my whole working life travelling between time zones. The only real solution is to get some exercise in the daylight when you arrive. A walk for 45 min to an hour is very helpful. And just switch to the new time. Go to bed at a "normal" time and get up at a "normal" time. Avoid daytime napping for the first few days.
 
Camino(s) past & future
None
#11
I live on the East Coast of the US and therefore lose 6 hours when traveling to Spain. In order not to be a complete wreck on the first few days of my camino, I attempt to "time shift" while still at home. I do this by getting up 5 minutes earlier every morning for 36 days prior to departure (and of course going to bed earlier every night). This has me getting up at 4am by my departure date (10am in Spain). This leaves me only 3 hours to adjust to once I arrive.

Still, I hate doing it. Does anyone else out there have a better tecnique, a magic pill, whatever, for overcoming the time difference? Since I only have two weeks in which to hike, I cannot afford to lose time on the front end by sleeping in.

Thanks for any suggestions and Buen Camino.

Paula
I just plan on two nights before walking. One in Bayonne and one in Saint Jean.
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#12
I am not sure there really is “a plan” that works for everyone. The body needs time to adjust to your new Location! However, I have noticed that when I am rested before leaving, I have an easier time adjusting when I am there.


Cut down on stress!
We make sure we are packed a few days ahead of time. We stay at the airport hotel we are flying from the Night before our night flight. We get a late check out and rest the morning of the flight rather than taking a two hour ride to the airport. We get a good breakfast at the hotel. Rest some more, keeping the legs elevated...then do an hours workout at the hotel workout room. We eat lunch at the hotel and check out abt 2pm. We take the free hotel airport shuttle and check in. We are fortunate to have free passes to our airlines club which is already through security and we spend two stressless hours at the club before going to the gate. I tell you all of this because the stress folks cause themselves before they board also has a toll on the body. Give yourself enough time at airport that you do not feel pressured!

On the plane
Do not drink alcohol on the plane...resist beer, wine and spirits. Also pass on caffeinated products. Alcohol and caffeine will contribute to dehydration! Drink lots of water make sure you buy bottled water before boarding or fill your bottle at the airport. Do not drink airplane water unless it comes in unopened bottles.

We bring fresh fruit and cheese on the plane, oranges, apples, pears, etc. for vitamin and water content. We usually skip the plane food. Btw we bring clorox wipes and clean the table and chair arms where we are seated. Do bring hand cleaner and use it each time you leave the airline bathrooms.

We use eye shades and try to simulate darkness as soon as possible....No movies

When the flight crew serves breakfast we make sure to begin stretching. ...Signaling our bodies it is time to get up.

Our flight makes a change in Dublin. We then have a cup of coffee And then try to function on European time for meals and pills.
 
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CdnDreamer

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2012, 2015 & 2018) San Salvador (2018)
#13
I fly out of Toronto. I eat a huge meal at the airport and then take an over the counter sleeping pill. (I think it is similar to Benadryl) I take a flight that leaves early evening, and arrives in the morning. Since I sleep the whole 7 hours on the plane, I am on European time when I arrive. (I sleep through the meals on the plane.) It takes me about two days to start feeling hungry at the right time, but that is my only symptom of jet lag.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte / Primitivo Sept-Oct 2017
Camino del Norte (2019)
#14
I am not sure there really is “a plan” that works for everyone. The body needs time to adjust to your new Location! However, I have noticed that when I am rested before leaving, I have an easier time adjusting when I am there.


Cut down on stress!
We make sure we are packed a few days ahead of time. We stay at the airport hotel we are flying from the Night before our night flight. We get a late check out and rest the morning of the flight rather than taking a two hour ride to the airport. We get a good breakfast at the hotel. Rest some more, keeping the legs elevated...then do an hours workout at the hotel workout room. We eat lunch at the hotel and check out abt 2pm. We take the free hotel airport shuttle and check in. We are fortunate to have free passes to our airlines club which is already through security and we spend two stressless hours at the club before going to the gate. I tell you all of this because the stress folks cause themselves before they board also has a toll on the body. Give yourself enough time at airport that you do not feel pressured!

On the plane
Do not drink alcohol on the plane...resist beer, wine and spirits. Also pass on caffeinated products. Alcohol and caffeine will contribute to dehydration! Drink lots of water make sure you buy bottled water before boarding or fill your bottle at the airport. Do not drink airplane water unless it comes in unopened bottles.

We bring fresh fruit and cheese on the plane, oranges, apples, pears, etc. for vitamin and water content. We usually skip the plane food. Btw we bring clorox wipes and clean the table and chair arms where we are seated. Do bring hand cleaner and use it each time you leave the airline bathrooms.

We use eye shades and try to simulate darkness as soon as possible....No movies

When the flight crew serves breakfast we make sure to begin stretching. ...Signaling our bodies it is time to get up.

Our flight makes a change in Dublin. We then have a cup of coffee And then try to function on European time for meals and pills.
This is the best and most practical advice that I've read. Thank you! I've just copied it and added it to my "Helpful Info" document to use on our next overseas trip, and certainly for our next Camino (Sept 2019). My acupuncturist gave me only one piece of advice, and that was to drink a lot of water for 48 hours prior to our flight (and plenty more en route). This seemed to work; no jet lag from LA to San Sebastian, with a 12-hour layover in Madrid.
 
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 to 2018
#15
Based on some 40 years for traveling internationally, in all directions, Marbe2 has, IMHO, the best overall suggestions. My version is this:
  • When heading West to East (US to Europe), take an overnight flight.
  • Change your watch and smartphone to the destination time zone as soon as you are wheels-up.
  • Avoid alcohol, use an eye mask and noise suppressing earphones (I have Bose earbuds), and SLEEP as much as you can on the way over. On a typical 8.5 hour flight I usually get at least 6 hours.
  • I always ask my seat mates to: (a) climb over me to get to the lav if they need to while I am asleep, (b) DO NOT wake me for the main meal if I am apparently sleeping, and (c) DO wake me with a poke in the ribs, for whatever passes for breakfast shortly before landing.
  • On arrival, immediately shift into the local time zone. Resist the urge to have an afternoon nap. Remain awake until a normal sleeping time in the local time zone, e.g. 10:00 pm, etc.
Even so, I always plan at least one full day at my starting place before I start to walk. This helps me to acclimate to the climate, culture and Camino.

Hope this helps.
 
#16
I agree with all who use the “power through” approach to jet lag when going west to east (so mainly talking Canada, US, and Latin America to Spain). Since my entry point into Spain is almost always Madrid, and I then have to travel on to my starting point, I find it works much better for me to get all my traveling done on that same arrival day. I may doze some in the airport or on my next flight, but using that first day for travel means I save a day that would otherwise be wasted and groggy. With careful planning, I can arrive at my starting city in time to do the errands like getting a SIM card, fruit and nuts for the pack, etc (thank you Spain for your late commercial hours!). If there are things I want to visit at my starting point, I will spend a day there, but otherwise, getting up and starting to walk that next day works like a charm for me. I learned from falcon years ago that it has to do with sunlight and circadian rhythms.

This year I started in Almería and very much wanted to see the civil war shelters, so I spent two nights there. But normally I will just get up and walk the next morning. I didn’t start doing this for years, thinking that I needed a rest day before starting out. If you know that’s what you need, fine, but if you only “think” that’s what you need, I’d suggest starting out the day after arriving and seeing if you fall right into the routine painlessly. If not you can always stop early, regroup, etc.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Levant from Avila 2013
Frances (2018 or 2019)
#17
I haven't seen a comment yet about our 24 hour travel times from Sydney to Europe. In my case, I find it helpful to allow a couple of days in Europe to overcome the jet lag. I assume that excitement also helps a lot in making the time change. By far the worst lag is when travelling back to Oz, I suspect the let down after a time away also contributes to my lasting fatigue.
 

JacTx

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
?
#18
OK, call me weird but I do it differently. I take the EARLY (like 6am) flight from Dallas to Chicago, then fly to London arriving around 10:30pm, spend the night in a hotel near the airport then the next morning fly on to my destination.
What can I say? It works for me.
-- Jac
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015); Camino Norte/Primitivo (2016); Camino Frances (2017); Le Puy (June 2018)
#19
I am not sure there really is “a plan” that works for everyone. The body needs time to adjust to your new Location! However, I have noticed that when I am rested before leaving, I have an easier time adjusting when I am there.


Cut down on stress!
We make sure we are packed a few days ahead of time. We stay at the airport hotel we are flying from the Night before our night flight. We get a late check out and rest the morning of the flight rather than taking a two hour ride to the airport. We get a good breakfast at the hotel. Rest some more, keeping the legs elevated...then do an hours workout at the hotel workout room. We eat lunch at the hotel and check out abt 2pm. We take the free hotel airport shuttle and check in. We are fortunate to have free passes to our airlines club which is already through security and we spend two stressless hours at the club before going to the gate. I tell you all of this because the stress folks cause themselves before they board also has a toll on the body. Give yourself enough time at airport that you do not feel pressured!

On the plane
Do not drink alcohol on the plane...resist beer, wine and spirits. Also pass on caffeinated products. Alcohol and caffeine will contribute to dehydration! Drink lots of water make sure you buy bottled water before boarding or fill your bottle at the airport. Do not drink airplane water unless it comes in unopened bottles.

We bring fresh fruit and cheese on the plane, oranges, apples, pears, etc. for vitamin and water content. We usually skip the plane food. Btw we bring clorox wipes and clean the table and chair arms where we are seated. Do bring hand cleaner and use it each time you leave the airline bathrooms.

We use eye shades and try to simulate darkness as soon as possible....No movies

When the flight crew serves breakfast we make sure to begin stretching. ...Signaling our bodies it is time to get up.

Our flight makes a change in Dublin. We then have a cup of coffee And then try to function on European time for meals and pills.
Lots of great tips, Marbe!
 

lissie45

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning to walk Frances 2019
#20
I haven't seen a comment yet about our 24 hour travel times from Sydney to Europe. In my case, I find it helpful to allow a couple of days in Europe to overcome the jet lag. I assume that excitement also helps a lot in making the time change. By far the worst lag is when travelling back to Oz, I suspect the let down after a time away also contributes to my lasting fatigue.
I've already flown 3.5 hours by the time I get to Sydney - and probably been up for 7 hours!

I much prefer to to do a stop-over - preferably in both directions - but at the very least on the way back - coming back is by far the worst.

I think there are 2 things that actually make a difference 1) flying in the newer jets which have better cabin pressure e.g the 787s - a lot of the issues people get are just a reaction to spending many hours at the equivalent of 2200m . 2) from the start of the trip eat on the schedule of your destination. There was some studies done on this - eating triggers your whole diurnal rhythm. When we fly to Sydney from NZ the flight is at 6am NZ time and the meal is about 7am NZ time -but that's 4am Sydney time - so I skip eating until we get to Australia - even if I have to pay for breakfast in Sydney and skip the free food on the plane.

Currently looking at flights to Europe - most are around 36 hours ex NZ to Madrid or Barcelona - I never plan on doing anything on arrival except falling into a shower and then a bed so I do try for arrival times in the evening
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#21
OK, call me weird but I do it differently. I take the EARLY (like 6am) flight from Dallas to Chicago, then fly to London arriving around 10:30pm, spend the night in a hotel near the airport then the next morning fly on to my destination.
What can I say? It works for me.
-- Jac
I have done something similar on occasion. We have taken a later flight to Dublin, booked into a hotel there. Stayed overnight and flown to Spain the following day.
Sometimes we have also spent an extra night in Madrid as well....but we are retired and have the luxury of time to do so.
 
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Camino(s) past & future
'Portuguese' ' Frances' ' Norte' 'Salvador_prim' ‘le puy’ ‘Inglés’ ‘CDM’ ‘Invierno’ ‘Fin_Mux’
#22
I think if i can discipline myself to the sensible tips above from everyone — I come up much better.
Not sure why, but I’ve never felt great effects going over from Sydney to anywhere in Europe ; but Bob Chambers’ quote; stands out for me.... the fatigue seems to drag on and it’s difficult to get out of the hole.
Maybe I’ll drink even more water !!

By far the worst lag is when travelling back to Oz, I suspect the let down after a time away also contributes to my lasting fatigue.
Annie
 
Camino(s) past & future
I have walked part of the Camino Frances and plan to start over in April 2018.
#23
Start right away. There is nothing like exercise in the sunshine to reset your clock. Avoid an afternoon nap. Also, not too much liquor in the evening. It tends to dehydrate you just when need to be helping your body chemistry. I think you will keep the jet lag under two days.
Thanks for the suggestions. Since I only hike about 10 miles per day, I don't usually need to hit the trail until around 9am. Certainly no later. And I do not drink el vino so no debydration problems from that practice.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (Sept 2016)
SDC/ Finesterre/ Muxia (2016)
#24
"The only real solution is to get some exercise in the daylight when you arrive. A walk for 45 min to an hour is very helpful. And just switch to the new time. Go to bed at a "normal" time and get up at a "normal" time. Avoid daytime napping for the first few days "

this has worked for me coming from the states though Iceland

That is why on my SJPP to Santiago trip I chose to leave SJPDP on foot and get to Orisson.
I arrived mid day ( though end of august meant 35c weather and a hot slog) but I had been in planes, waiting rooms, Express Baricout over the last days and NEEDED to move my leg

Walking, after stocking up on trail food, meant I was outdoors in the sun , lightly physically fatigued and ready to actually sleep that night and Orisson was close enough to not be too much while under jet lag.
And if i had a choice between spending time and money in SJPDP (yeah I know some like to explore and want the time) and a longer day the next, this put me immediately on my Camino very gently
 


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