While prepping and stressing over an upcoming travel day, the last thing I would want to do is to add another task to the list. In an interview with WSJ, the founder of Allbirds mentioned that getting in a workout session before flying can help, especially for longer flights. And his logic seems pretty spot-on:
There's something about sitting for so long that I think is not always the nicest feeling, but if you've exercised or done something strenuous beforehand, it somehow feels better and you feel like you're recovering, rather than getting antsy.
This probably won't work for an early AM flight, but it sounds like a great idea. After a workout, the body is in a state of recovery and feels much different compared to the opposite. Pair it with a nice shower, and you'll feel accomplished and relaxed.
The key to getting your heart pumping and working your muscles enough where you the downtime afterward actually makes a difference; light exercise and stretching are better than nothing but won't give the same results. Fortunately, there is a wide range of options. Hit the hotel gym, go for a run outside before leaving, or calisthenics, utilizing your body weight in a small space like your hotel room—even power walking around the neighborhood or the airport. Afterward, pat yourself on the back and enjoy the rest of your trip.