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10 Things Only People Who Are Born To Travel Will Understand

10 Things Only People Who Are Born To Travel Will Understand

It must be a gene. The wanderlust, I mean. Actually, the experts are arguing that the desire to seek out new places, explore the countryside and cities and discover hidden gems can really be attributed to your genes, but not just one.

The correct name for the gene is DRD4-7R, but I like to think that the letter D stands for ‘destinations,’ and lots of them. Read on to discover if you have this gene and were in fact born to travel. Even if you can’t seem to relate to everything, read on and dream from your comfortable couch, and maybe you will become inspired.

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” – Saint Augustine

1. You’ve always been crazy about maps.

Apart from studying Geography at school and really enjoying it, you were always reading National Geographic. When I was at school, I remember winning a prize for a picture map I had made of Australia.

Of course, I went on to get a degree in Geography and then tried to teach it to sulky teenagers. Then I had to walk the talk and started to travel around the world. If you have a passion for maps, then you can relate to this. And if you have maps on your walls instead of paintings, then you are perfectly normal.

2. You are the perfect exemplar of the curious human being.

Migration, exploration and opening new frontiers have been essential to man’s conquest of the planet. If you feel that constant urge to discover new places, faces and food, then you definitely have the travel bug.

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There is no cure, except to actually give in and travel. If you have to stay at home, you will curl up and surely regret not getting out there.

3. You have no problems in justifying your travel budget.

When people tell you that the money you spent on your adventures could have been spent on clothes, a car or even a house, it may be time to end the friendship. Well, maybe not that drastic of a measure should be taken. But these people just do not understand the enormous investment you have made in discoveries which will last a lifetime.

Objects will wear out. The travel bug will never really be cured and you are perfectly happy with this chronic illness!

4. You are not easily scared.

In December 1998, 16 tourists were kidnapped in Yemen while I was vacationing there with friends. Later, in a blitz on the hideout by Yemeni troops, four of the tourists were killed. We were not involved and we knew nothing about this horrible affair until afterwards.

When we arrived back in Italy, we were interviewed by reporters at the airport asking us why we had chosen such a dangerous destination! Nobody could understand and I was even reprimanded by a colleague for having taken such a risk.

I later learned that one of his favorite holiday destinations is Vienna! A fairly predictable destination that takes a lot away from the adventure.

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5. You regard strangers as friends you have just not met yet.

Here are some great ways of making friends on your travels. If you are into card games, always carry a deck. Exchanging card games is one great way to make friends.

Another great ice breaker is eating together. Offer to buy some groceries and cook something if you have the facilities. It is also a good way to get to know people better before deciding if they might be possible travelling companions.

But just chatting to people and discovering more about their daily lives is a truly enriching experience.

6. You get a high when you book a trip.

“I think it’s my adventure, my trip, my journey, and I guess my attitude is let the chips fall where they may.” – Leonard Nimoy

Maybe you are one of those people who just let the trip happen and do not plan at all. Some people start planning the moment they have booked the tickets. They say that the anticipation is all part of the fun.

Planning itineraries, reading guide books and learning what is in store is really a great way to get a high. It is also one of the cheapest and healthiest ways I know.

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7. You are not afraid of disease or illnesses.

When I decided to take a job in Naples in 1973, there was a cholera epidemic there at the time. This was practically the only time that I argued with my mother who tried to dissuade me from going. She lost. I got my vaccination and off I went on one of the most exciting adventures I ever had.

A few sensible precautions will likely keep you healthy on your travels.

8. You know all about packing.

If you have the travel bug, you are ready to leave at a moment’s notice because you might get a sudden attack. The secret, as you know, is to be able to pack the essentials in a jiffy ans in the lightest of bags.

You never need to revise your internal list of what is allowed or not. You just know it all by heart. To the same tune, you are a minimalist because you avoid all that checking in and retrieving heavy baggage. It’s carry-on for you for most of your trips.

On my last trip, a fellow passenger told me about using compression packs for the bulky items. A lifesaver.

9. You are not afraid of jet lag.

You are one of those lucky people who are never really fazed by jet lag. You know all the tricks and remedies and you can easily cope with a long flight. For example, you make your main meal the one before you board so that you can have light snacks during the flight. This makes digestion easier.

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You know all about turning your watch to the new time zone as soon as you board. Then you spend the time on board accordingly.

Let us imagine that you are flying from Sydney at noon to LAX, due to arrive at 9 am. You know that as the flight is 13 hours long, you shouldn’t be awake for the entire time, but get some sleep for the second half of the flight. In this way, you arrive at the morning arrival time, having slept some hours on board.

It makes life so much easier, but you know all this of course, as a seasoned traveler.

10. You can never get enough.

A girl I once knew traveled frequently and she was addicted. When she got home after a long trip, she found a note from her boyfriend which read, “Wait a few days before planning your next trip!”

Now that is the really seemingly intolerable bit about the habit of traveling. It never really leaves you and you can never get free – not that you particularly want to.

And you always start conversations with, “When I was in…” No, you are not boring, you are just an extremely interesting and curious human being. In other words, an incurable traveller. Join the club!

Featured photo credit: Freedom traveler woman standing with raised arms and enjoying a beautiful nature. Image with instagram filter via shutterstock.com

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Last Updated on August 15, 2018

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

Video Summary

Why is it important to train up our core strength?

There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

One Exercise, multiple benefits

There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

What will happen when you start doing planks every day

    1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

    Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

    • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
    • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
    • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
    • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

    2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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      Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

      Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

      3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

        Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

        4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

          Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

          A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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          A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

          On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

          5. You’ll improve overall balance

            Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

            6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

              Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

              7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                How to hold a plank position

                1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                  How to improve your plank time gradually

                  1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                  2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                  3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                  Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                  Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                  You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                  • Prolapse
                  • After prolapse surgery
                  • Pelvic pain conditions
                  • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                  • Previous childbirth
                  • Overweight

                  Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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