What is the most challenging part of being a travel nurse? One answer is probably finding ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle. As a nurse, you know that fitness is an important part of that formula. Between travel and working shifts, it takes a little ingenuity to practice effective fitness on the road. Consider some ways you can manage to get exercise no matter where work takes you.
Pack for It
There is no rule that says the only place you can exercise is at the gym. When packing to go on assignment, include some tools to help you stay fit while you travel for work.
- Jump rope
- Resistance tubes
- Inflatable yoga ball
- Small hand and wrist weights
- Yoga mat
- Fitness DVD
Make sure to pack the right clothing, too. This will help encourage you to work out when you have time.
- Athletic shoes
- Exercise clothing
- Gym socks
With the right items packed to go when you go, you have everything you need to maintain proper fitness on the road.
Do Your Research
As soon as you know where your next assignment will be, get on the Internet and start looking at the fitness options. Check with the hospital to see if they offer an employee fitness room or if they have discount gym memberships. Investigate housing options to find a place with a gym on the property.
Locate a fitness center or jogging trail close to both the hospital and your housing. The point is don’t wait until you get there to figure out where you will exercise. Do some homework before the assignment begins, so you are ready to go when you get there.
Tips for Fitness on the Road
There is more to living a fit lifestyle than just finding a gym or figuring out how to exercise. Here are some tips to keep you on the right path.
Cook our own meals. What you eat is just as important as how much you exercise. Don’t get into the habit of hitting the drive through for every meal. Pick housing with a kitchen, so you can cook healthier foods.
Buddy up. As you get acquainted with your colleagues, looks for a fitness buddy. This will be someone you can walk with everyday or take with you to the gym.
Create a workout schedule. Don’t leave exercising to chance. Get into a rhythm with your fitness routine. For example, get in the habit of going to the gym before your shifts or getting up an hour early to run.
Keep your sleep patterns consistent. Life on the road can throw off your sleep. Establish a set time to get up and go to sleep every day. Avoid taking naps or sleeping in on your days off. This will improve your overall health and give you energy to workout.
Use your life on the road to expand your fitness options instead of ignoring them. That type of diversity is one of the perks you get as a travel nurse.