Staying Healthy While on the Road: Travel Nurse Guide to Maintaining Health
Ever hear the phrase, “I need a vacation after my vacation?” Traveling is our escape from reality for just a tiny bit. It is where we may eat a little more than we normally would, drink a little more than we probably should, and sleep less while pushing our bodies to see and do as much as we can.
Traveling for work is entirely different. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2018, the number of RNs in the U.S. was approximately 3 million. While this number is expected to grow in the coming years, there is still a significant shortage across the country which is being compensated for by travel nurses and agencies such as GetMed Staffing.
Travel nurses are vital to the healthcare community, encompassing nearly 3 million RNs, but they face lifestyle changes when they uproot their homes and lives to go to a new place anywhere from one month up to a 13-week assignment. Here is a guide travel nurses should consider so they can take care of their bodies in order to continue caring for the patients they serve.
SLEEP, SLEEP, and SLEEP
Getting enough sleep is vital when moving to a new place. You may be in a new time zone or have difficulty adjusting to being in a new home. Using a white noise machine can be helpful, as well as having some blackout curtains to help with light. Though it may be hard, stay off the electronic devices at night. They can be a huge stimulus that actually keep you awake. Try to get at least seven-to-nine hours of sleep, or if nothing else, listen to your body because it will tell you when it’s time to turn the lights off!
Try to establish a routine as quick as possible. If you live close enough to your job, try walking or riding a bike to work. Otherwise, plan to be active on your days off. There are plenty of mobile apps you can download to follow exercise programs, or you can do temporary memberships to local gyms. You can also see the sights and visits local parks, or the beach if you live near one of those.
PLAN YOUR MEALS (INCLUDING SNACKS)
Do NOT skip breakfast! Grab some instant oatmeal, have some fried eggs prepared in your fridge, or fresh fruit handy. According to Oatsovernight.com, eating a healthy breakfast decreases your appetite, helping you eat less throughout the day. Eating a healthy breakfast also improves your memory, can prevent Diabetes 2, and help you weigh less. If you can cook ahead of time, then bring your lunch with you. If not, try to eat more vegetables than meat. Grab an apple or banana and have it with you during the day when you need a quick snack during a busy day.
This list is certainly not all-inclusive, but any travel nurse that can master these tips will be well on their way to living a healthy lifestyle while seeing the country.
BEGIN YOUR JOURNEY WITH GETMED STAFFING
If you’re ready to take that journey with us, talk to one of our friendly recruiters at GetMed Staffing where your travel dreams and professional goals come together.