After six months representing NASA on the International Space Station, Minnesota astronaut Karen Nyberg recently returned to Earth.
Nyberg said the first 24 hours of her return were the hardest on her body.
"I had trouble walking without getting nauseous to be honest," Nyberg said in an interview for MPR's Morning Edition. "That's fairly typical for people coming back."
Following her launch into space on May 28, the Vining native said she adapted very quickly.
"I loved working in the environment without gravity, just moving around and changing orientation and doing a job upside down, sideways -- it didn't matter," Nyberg said. "Gravity is not as fun."
The astronauts spent much of their time at the space station conducting experiments, including one in which they studied how magnetic fields can change the properties of fluids. Nyberg said it could lead to some breakthroughs on the ground.
"I think we're going to be able to see advances in materials for various structures and maybe even suspension systems and brake systems and things like that by being able to change how the property behaves just by introducing a magnetic field."
Nyberg returned to Earth on Nov. 10 after 166 days on the space station.
Because the training for such a journey takes so long, Nyberg, who was the 50th woman in space, doesn't expect to head back any time soon. That means she'll be able to spend more time with her 3-year-old son.
"The first night I was back, we were just sitting on the couch, He said, 'Mommy, can we build a cardboard space station?'"
Here's some video from the interview.
And here's some video from the last time Nyberg spoke with MPR.