I was very affected by jet lag on my trip to Amsterdam, Paris and England in April and May both going over and coming back to North Idaho. It took me nearly a week to get over crumping in the afternoon and needing a nap on arrival to Europe and about the same on the way back home. I've been traveling to Europe twice a year since Covid and had never had it this bad. That trip was 5+ weeks so had plenty of time in Europe to adjust but it did impact my plans somewhat both in Amsterdam and Paris.
I'd scheduled a 2-week Mark Seymour tour to the Scottish Islands for mid-August and was just going to go over and back with a few days on either end for flex time for flight delays. I did not want to spend a week getting over jet lag because that would be into my tour time and I like to hit the ground running, especially with Mark's active tours. No time for me to have low energy!!
There was a discussion started by forum member Sandancisco several weeks ago on jet lag resources so during that discussion I decided to try the TimeShifter app. It is based on research from NASA for use with astronauts on Space Missions and was developed using scientific research into circadian rhythm adjustment which is what is out of whack for jet lag.
I decided it was worth a try so downloaded it and followed it as best I could. You are given 1 free round trip when you download the app. Then you plug in your data - flight times/destinations, your local time, your normal sleep times, whether you are a lark or a night owl, maybe some other parameters?? and it formulates a plan for getting/not getting sunlight/screen light, when to drink or abstain from caffeine, when to sleep/nap and if you want, when to take melatonin. I’ve never taken Melatonin so although I asked for that information I didn’t use it. I did not want to start taking something new and I also read it can give you vivid dreams which frankly, I do not need, lol.
I set it up putting in my flights a couple of weeks ahead of time. I did have to do some studying on it as it seems a little complex for my non-engineer brain, hahaha! I printed out the whole schedule, laid it out on the dining room table and tried to absorb it. Really, it turned out that was not necessary because if you allow notifications the app cued me on my AppleWatch 30 minutes ahead of each change (get sunlight, get darkness, get caffeine, no caffeine, etc) It’s set up on an east-bound trip to start 2 days ahead for Western US folks to Europe. For a Sunday departure, I was to get up at my regular time on Friday (6A) but woke up at 4A so went with it. I liked the reminder not to have caffeine after a certain time so I had my lunch sweet tea at 1045, haha! Bedtime on Friday was 8P, Saturday was 7P.
The time in the airports was the tough part for either trying to get daylight or trying to avoid it! Plus the day I was to start on the return jet lag plan the weather on Shetland was gorgeous with blue skies and we were out tramping around Neolithic/Viking/Medieval sights plus up to a headland to look at a lighthouse and give a last try to see whales (no luck!). Controlling the sun then was difficult but I wore sunglasses and a cap and hoped for the best. (I am not a sunglasses or ball cap wearer in general!)