As a nurse, I understand the importance of living a healthy lifestyle since it was drilled into my brain during nursing school as just about every disease and/or illness is somehow linked to living a bad lifestyle i.e. smoking, drinking (in excess), sedentary lifestyle, too much screen time, unhealthy food choices, little or no sleep, etc.
Travel nursing is the perfect opportunity to adopt the healthy lifestyle you have always strived for. I have included 5 helpful tips that you can follow while on assignment in these new and exciting places that will keep you feeling nourished. These tips can be beneficial for anyone so we can all strive to be the best version of yourself as you can be.
Mind. I believe your mind set and view of this world is the root of how your life will unfold. It truly is all about perspective and your viewpoint on life that can steer you in one direction versus the other. Traveling to and from new hospitals, states, cities, and neighborhoods can be both mentally and emotionally taxing due to the constant changes from place to place. However, it can additionally invigorate and enlighten you. There are so many pieces of this journey that I would have never learned or experienced if otherwise fixed in one location. So live with an open mind and always welcome new experiences as there is constantly something to be taken from it.
Word of mouth. In correspondence with my previous tip, its crucial to plan and research your new city and surrounding area that you will be living. From my personal experience I find it is helpful to plan out each weekend to a new place that I have not traveled to just yet. This allows me to have local spots that I can venture to during the week after work and potential day trips to experience on the weekends. The best ways I have found to find the hot spots are speaking with locals (mostly coworkers at the hospital) about their favorite places to go, and researching online on yelp – one of my “go to’s is the gypsy travel nurse . This will make the transition that much easier due to having a plan on what to do with your free time especially for those that are traveling solo.
Farmers markets are a good source of fresh seasonal vegetables in every town.
Body. When I first started traveling I viewed it as being on a constant vacation because everything is fun and exciting! This is not a problem at all and this is definitely how you should feel while loving what you do. However, one of the most valuable things you own is your body and you should take care of it because its the only one you will ever have. I have gradually been trying to use the “everything in moderation” saying. It truly is the most effective way to live because lets be honest, we all need to satisfy that craving when it happens because we all know it will come. As a traveler, I definitely want to try out all these new restaurants and awesome food that they have to offer as it is all apart of the experience for me…But…as a nurse my training is nagging at me to keep everything in moderation to stay healthy too! So, whatever you find works for you, do it. Whether it be to splurge on the weekends and stay consistent with whole, natural foods at home during the week. You can still be in vacation mode while traveling just try to keep your “vacation mode diet” out of the picture.
Alive and Active. Moving from place to place may become difficult with keeping a consistent workout routine as you will not always have the gym equipment you use, or even the gym facility doesn’t exist where you have relocated to. This is where flexibility comes in handy (pun intended). As a travel nurse we thrive off of being able to adapt to new situations. Working out should not be a huge feat to overcome. I understand everyone is different with their needs for getting that daily workout in but if you stretch your mind you can possibly get more enjoyment out of it. For me, I enjoy hiking on my afternoons off of work or even on the weekends for many reasons. I feel it allows me to get outside and enjoy the outdoors and fresh air rather than just spending another hour inside a gym where I have been indoors all day prior to this. Also, it really is a great heart rate booster climbing up and down mountains and hills. Now, I understand if you have relocated to somewhere that hiking is not an option. This is where creativity may need to come into play. I’ll use NYC as an example because I know the great outdoors is not as accessible to hiking there. I do however know there are beautiful parks and bridges within the city that you can utilize to get your heart rate up. There is always a good option for working out when looking for it outdoors. So if you’re used to going to the same gym establishment try getting outside and enjoying some fresh air after being inside a hospital all day, your body will thank you.