Holidays are good for your health. And I’m half way through 10 days of proving just that right now.
Obviously dear readers, I have your best interests at heart being in Barbados at this time of year *cough*. Strictly research purposes, a need to prove exactly why holidays are so good for us.
For all the other wonderful things life throws at us, the part of life that includes the washing, the ironing, the taking the bins out and battling with the daily commute, can often give rise to the occasional head / ball ache.
Sometimes it all gets a bit much, doesn’t it? But getting away from it all can make such a miraculous difference. A stay-cation, a trip of a lifetime, a long weekend away, a week under the duvet; whatever shape or form a holiday takes there’s no denying it’s good for our health.
Why are holidays good for our health?
1. Vitamin D drenching
Vitamin D. A micronutrient super hero. Its benefits are endless. But, if you’re a UK reader it’s safe to say you’re definitely not getting enough vitamin D to see you through our darker, more miserable months. This excerpt from a post by the guys at Health Uncut explains why:
“[From October to March] we can’t make any vitamin D*. Even on a sunny day the UVB is not of the correct wavelength (290-320nm) for synthesising vitamin D.”
The best and most valid excuse you’ll ever need for taking a winter sun holiday.
*We make vitamin D from cholesterol in our bodies. The sunlight basically makes the vitamin D magic happen from the cholesterol.
2. Holidays represent a major milestone
2013 has been a bit like my very own ‘Tale of two cities’. Undeniably an equal measure of the absolute best and worst of times.
Fittingly, my Dad booked this trip to the Caribbean for us all on Mother’s Day. We’ve all counted down to it since. Not wished our lives away, merely comforted ourselves through the more difficult days that we have something so lovely to look forward to. A major milestone that’s kept us going.
3. Les vacances sont enrichissant
Yip, holidays are truly enriching. And mark my words, when you say it in French, they’re even more enriching. Promise. Holidays are so often about new experiences, understanding new cultures, accepting others, accepting yourself more. Ironically, from the horizontal comfort of a sun lounger I’ve felt ready to move mountains. I’ve felt equally determined never, ever to behave like the posh d*ckhead who dares to speak so disdainfully to the Bajan barman.
4. You learn so much about those closest to you
Quite often you’ll holiday with family and close friends. People you feel you already spend so much time with. But nothing compares to the time you spend together on holiday. Some things remain constant; (for example, the extent to which my husband says he loves me is somewhat diluted by his ongoing reluctance to share his pudding) other things bring you closer together – Thailand. Food poisoning. Wooden slatted toilet door. Two casualties. I’ll say no more. But reader, I married him / he still married me.
5. You learn a lot about yourself
You have more time to think. More time to really consider what it is you want to be doing. Time to pick up books that’ll set you up for challenges ahead. In 2012 I ran three marathons in three months. Amongst other things, there’s no denying 10 days on honeymoon in Mauritius and Matthew Syed’s Bounce right before 21 weeks of training began, set me up good and proper.
This holiday I’ve unfortunately (fortunately?) learned how hideously addicted I am to the interwebs. If I do nothing else on my return, it’ll be working on my ‘FOMO’ issues. But you know I love to share a good tale so for now, I’m more than happy to embrace the Wi-Fi – especially as it stretches this far:
How do you find holidays benefit you?