Stress, fatigue, airline schedules, weather, maintenance issues and airport demands are the most common stressors affecting pilots and influencing air safety in this sector of aviation. Every day is different, even though your home base and chosen flights may be to the same destination.

Degenerative factors can lead to fatigue and adversely affect your Circulatory and Respiratory systems in the 12,500 – 50,000-foot airspace. Good foundational health is key to easily re-certifying from medical exams, having resiliency and maintaining professional longevity. Taking advantage of hotel gyms and outdoor spaces for activity gives you opportunities to exercise, an important part of self-care when working.

Consider the Five P’s approach for creating a daily/weekly Plan that incorporates water consumption, meals/snacks, sleep and exercise. Think of your physical body as the Plane, your brain/mental acuity and awareness as the Pilot, packed gear as Passengers and Programming as flight path, objectives and details.

Using this model makes it easier to monitor results over time to see how you’re doing. And of course, with regular recertification physicals, you’ll see measurable improvements. Good health comes from routine actions, so just like pre-flight checks, confirm each item on your list.

Let’s look at how these healthy habits can keep you in top form:

Hydration – drink ½ your body weight in ounces of filtered water each day

  • Helps with stiffness, exercise recovery and mental clarity
  • Helps flush and support the Immune and Lymphatic systems when sedentary
  • Moistens internal and external skin leading to improved Immune and Digestive function
Bulk nuts in bags

Photo by Leila Issa on Unsplash

Meals and Snacks – eat a balanced diet – 1/3 complex carbs, 1/3 protein, 1/3 good fats

  • Consuming high-quality food and water sustains better energy levels
  • Strive to eat or snack every 3-4 hours for better blood sugar balance, liver health and mood
  • Pack healthy snacks for convenience, quality control and craving avoidance

Sleep – 7-8 quality hours each night

  • Supports healthy brain function, mental acuity and good memory
  • Regenerates all organs of elimination and supports healthy hormone balance
  • Boosts levels of Growth Hormone produced for replenishing the body while at rest

Exercise – stretch and movement

  • Improves your ability to rest and sleep well
  • Mental and mood balance from producing healthy biochemicals
  • Walk, swim, run, elliptical, stretch, weights, Yoga – 10-15 minutes is better than 0 minutes!

You could easily see medical exam and lab results improvements within 6 months, even though you’re biologically aging. Enhancing Circulation and Respiration positively affects every organ, gland, tissue and system in your body. A bonus to improved daily health is what I like to call, “building reserves.” This allows you to rebound quickly from illness or having a medical procedure – a big plus when you want to feel better and get back to work!

Once you feel improvements from your new steps, that momentum builds upon itself as you take flight with better health and quality of life. Start today and feel better and brighter right away.