Travel Nurses are constantly on the go during their assignments, making it sometimes difficult to stay on top of mental and physical health. Whether you are hitting the road for the first time, or are looking to adopt new healthy habits, here are some helpful tips to keep you healthy while on your travel nurse assignment!
Maintain Your Physical Health
As a travel nurse, it can be difficult to make your physical health a priority. You come home from a long and exhausting shift and the last thing you want to do is fit a workout in. Here are some great ways to work on your physical health:
- Join a local gym that you can attend on your days off or when you just need to relieve the stresses of work. Make sure to do your research to find the best fit for you.
- Don’t want to join a gym? No problem! Order a few resistance bands to do body workouts wherever you are!
- Go on walks or hikes. There is nothing better than a long walk while enjoying the beauty of nature wherever you are.
- Even the simplest forms of physical activity can be good for you! Whether that is walking to the local coffee shop you discovered or taking a morning stroll on the beach, keep your body moving.
- Always stay hydrated! Water is vital for the human body to function properly throughout the day so make sure you have a good water bottle on hand. You can even find a 64-ounce water bottle to make sure you get your full water intake throughout the day.
Sleep Makes Everything Better
Working long shifts every day can be extremely stressful and draining. Sleep is important to help you maintain your physical and mental wellbeing, but catching some Z’s isn’t always as easy as it sounds for a nurse. Here are some ways to keep your sleep schedule regular:
- Make your space your own. Bringing cozy items with you while you’re on assignment like your pillow, favorite blanket or slippers can help you stay relaxed.
- When it’s time to sleep, keep your room cool, dark, and even find a comfortable sleep mask to block out any extra light.
- Sound machines are great to bring with you on a travel assignment. If you don’t have one you can even play white noise straight from your phone. A variety of music apps have different playlists that can help you fall asleep and stay asleep.
- Ensure that you have a regular bedtime routine in place. Whether you enjoy reading a book or prefer to limit screen time before bed, having a consistent routine every day will help your body prepare itself for a good night’s sleep.
Don’t Neglect Your Mental Health
Traveling can sometimes mean that you will have time alone or that you might be far away from your friends, family, and loved ones. This could put a strain on your mental health. Here are some tips for supporting good mental health:
- Make sure to research the location you are heading to. If you are traveling alone, you can fill up your schedule with activities and adventures to keep your mind and body active.
- Have nothing to do in a new city? Working extra shifts is always a good option and a terrific way to make extra money!
- Add yoga, breathing exercises, or a form of meditation to your workouts for a particularly good stress reliever. It’s also the perfect way to stretch and heal your body after working a long shift.
- Remember that it’s always okay to ask for help. There are many online resources you can use if you are feeling down or just need someone to talk to, and here’s a great place to start. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness. It takes tremendous strength and shows that you care about your body and wellbeing.
Happy Healthy Wallet
While traveling from place to place, the cost of food and travel can add up quickly and expenses may be higher than you expect. As a travel nurse, healthy eating habits are important to improve and maintain your energy throughout shifts. Going out to eat may be quick and convenient, but overspending on eating out is not the healthiest way to live. There are many easy ways to save money while also keeping your body healthy! Here are some tips on how to keep a happy, healthy wallet:
- If you are staying in an Air BnB or a location where you can cook, it could help save you money. Meal prepping is such an easy way to have food ready to go throughout the week, making life easier when you work 12 hours a day.
- Eat your fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Eating these higher-quality foods will help keep your energy up. It is also cheaper than buying snacks from a vending machine.
- Limit your eating out to one or two times a week. The costs of eating out can add up quickly and often a restaurant’s portions are much bigger than what you would eat at home.
Life as a travel nurse can be tiring at times but is overall so rewarding! Not only do you help and heal others, but you also get to visit some breathtaking places and experience amazing adventures across the country. Just don’t forget to also take care of yourself during your travels. Practice each of these tips and you’ll be on your way to creating a healthy lifestyle as a travel nurse!