As anyone that works for a travel nurse agency knows, getting in shape and maintaining your health while traveling is tough. Right when you think you have a framework to maximize your productivity in the gym, you have to leave town to serve patients in different areas.
While the work is rewarding, it can be taxing on the mind as well as the body. If you travel for work and want to get in the best shape of your life, these tips will help you achieve your goals.
Traveling nurses, in previous years, were used as a means of filling scheduling gaps within a hospital’s staff roster. In essence, they were given a specific area to treat patients and distribute specialized care and medicine to those in need.
In modern times, a traveling nurse rarely has time to spend on their terms. With their chaotic schedule, cooking healthy meals and spending hours inside the supermarket gathering ingredients becomes impossible.
For the modern nurse to maintain their health and wellness, pre-cooking meals for multiple days is a necessity. We encourage readers to pick a day out of their busy schedules where they can dedicate a few hours to cooking. Once you finish cooking these meals, portion them off into equal sections inside of a portable container such as Tupperware or Pyrex. Here are some delicious meals that are healthy, easy to cook, and perfect for on-the-go professionals:
- Chicken and rice bowl
- Garlic butter chicken
- Creamy pasta pomodoro
- Baked tilapia
- Broccoli chicken for vegan enthusiasts
- Smoked salmon seasoned in lemon
- All-natural almonds
- Assorted fruit
- Protein shakes and bars
As you can see, eating on the go doesn’t have to be bland or dull. Instead, use your creativity in the kitchen to cook pre-packaged meals for the road!
If you want to get in serious shape, working out with resistance bands, weights and equipment is an absolute must: If you know that you will be traveling in a few days, scout ahead and find the nearby areas that have equipment available to you. Finding a gym inside a hotel or nearby recreation area is a great way to stay in shape regardless of your schedule or pre-commitments.
However, sometimes finding a local gym or equipment is impossible. Knowing this, we encourage you to get creative with workouts that you can complete in your hotel room. The following exercises will give you some ideas on how to spice up your workout and burn a sweat while away from home:
- Jumping jacks
- Wall sits
- Curls with heavy objects
Moreover, you can purchase items that are easy to set up when you’re on the go. Tools such as a pull-up bar that sits in your door frame can sculpt your back, burn fat and get your heart rate up in a matter of minutes. Traveling nurses can also explore the area located next to their hotel for trails and tracks that can provide space for a light jog or sprint workout.
When you are in the process of building productive habits and fitness routines, maintaining consistency is paramount. Answer this question honesty: Have you tried to get in shape in the past but fell short of your goals? If so, pat yourself on the back for being brave enough to attempt something worthwhile.
After further examination of this problem, we see an underlying factor: there was no motivation to continue your efforts. In the weeks and months to come, we encourage you to use apps and journals to keep track of your progress.
Revisit your entries to mark how far you have come in your health and wellness journey. Sometimes the most motivating factor we have is the progress we’ve made thus far!
Remember when you were younger, and you didn’t want to go to school? Although you would dread going to class, you always showed up because you knew your teacher and classmates relied on you. Following this same line of thinking, signing up for online fitness classes on Zoom and other conferencing apps will keep you accountable for your actions.
While the world is going through the COVID-19 pandemic, millions of individuals around the globe have begun signing up for online workout programs performed with an instructor. Fitness enthusiasts and personal trainers from around the globe help people, such as traveling nurses, get in shape from the comfort of their home or hotel.
If you’re traveling in the upcoming weeks and want to keep your physique tight and toned, online classes are something you should consider! Not only are they fun and easy to perform, but you will have access to an online community that’s rooting for you.
As a traveling nurse, we know how valuable sunlight is for the body. However, it’s hard for us to get free time to get outdoors while we pack our belongings and hit the road.
Knowing this, supplementing your diet with vitamin D tablets and foods can drastically improve your well-being. Being that you’re a nurse, we won’t barrage you with the medical impacts that vitamin D provides. However, here are some food items that you may want to throw into your diet as the days and weeks progress:
- Egg yolks
- Fatty fish
- Organic orange juice
- Red meat
- Portobello mushrooms
- Fortified milk
All of these foods, when consumed regularly, will help you maintain your weight and assist your immune system. As a nurse, your immune system needs to be in tip-top shape to serve your patients. Try these foods in your pre-packaged meals and see how they taste!
As you’re driving and waiting on patients, make sure to drink water. As you walk throughout the day and interact with clients, your body sweats and loses electrolytes. Investing in a high-quality water bottle is a must-do for traveling nurses that find themselves on the road frequently.
Before heading out the door to a meeting, develop the habit of filling your bottle. This action may seem like a nuisance at first, but the extra hydration will improve fat loss, increase mental focus and keep your energy high throughout your waking hours.
Make Your Health a Priority
Working for a travel nurse agency is challenging and rewarding at the same time. Being the caring and hardworking individual that you are, sometimes it becomes difficult to focus on personal endeavors while you’re busy saving the world.
As our last tip, we encourage you to take time for yourself in the upcoming months. Make a consistent effort to be kind to your body by exercising regularly, getting plenty of sleep and eating foods that heal and soothe your system. We know it won’t be easy, but it will be worth it in the end.
As valuable as your career is to you, investing back into your health and wellness by performing daily productive habits will help you in your professional life, as well as outside of the job. We wish you luck in the remainder of 2020 and beyond!
This content is brought to you by Brenda Vollman.