Staying in Shape as a Travel Nurse
Written by Rose Torrento on Thursday, June 06, 2019 Posted in Healthy Living
After spending a long shift on your feet, exercise is probably the last thing on your mind when you get home — but it’s still important. So, what’s a travel nurse to do without access to their usual gym or a familiar bike route? If you put your mind to it, there are plenty of ways to get some light exercise in and stay fit while you’re on assignment.
Staying fit is crucial
Implementing an exercise plan is important for everyone to maintain good physical health. However, it’s even more important for nurses to prioritize.
Nurses stand and walk for much of the day. Staying physically in shape can help alleviate the aches and pains you might experience and make physical exertion much easier for you.
Your typical fitness routine may not be accessible when you’re hundreds of miles from home. That said, there are many ways you can travel around the country and still stay in shape. From working out at home, to joining a national gym, to getting out and exploring your neighborhood a little more on foot, you have options when it comes to breaking your daily sweat.
At-home exercises make getting fit easy
One of the biggest exercise barriers for travel nurses is the availability of equipment and gym space. Travel nurses are no strangers to odd work hours; you may not be able to make it to traditional fitness classes, and the closest gym might close for the night before you’re able to get there.
But this doesn’t mean you can’t work out at all — you just need to get creative. One great option is to create a gym right in your own home.
There are tons of at-home exercises available for you to do in the comfort of your living room, either using body weight or small pieces of equipment such as free weights, resistance bands, and yoga balls. Doing 30 minutes of at-home exercise in the morning or after your shift is a quick and easy way to complete your daily workout.
Yoga is another great option for at-home exercise. While you could take a yoga class in the neighborhood, plenty of people follow online videos or mobile apps that guide them through yoga flows. Yoga is also great for stress relief and is a good wind-down activity before bed.
The best part of exercising at home is that you can fit your workouts in whenever you have time — no travel or hassle necessary.
Try some regional activities
Exercise doesn’t have to be limited to your home while you’re on assignment. There are tons of opportunities for workouts right outside your door.
If you prefer to work out in a formal gym setting, look into getting a membership at a gym chain that offers locations across the country. This way, your membership will be useful no matter where you go.
If you’re more adventurous, research the many options for exercise in your new city. This is a great opportunity to try something you’ve never done before, such as rock climbing, mountain hiking, skiing, surfing, and much more.
In addition, there are sure to be plenty of walking and biking trails near you, as well as walkable downtown areas where you can get your steps in while also learning more about your new home. Staying fit on the road is not as challenging as it seems, and it might even be more rewarding.
About the Author
Rosemarie Torrento has worked in health care for more than 26 years, beginning as a registered nurse in 1988. Early in her nursing career, Torrento worked as a freelance contract nurse before accepting a position in nursing administration. During her 17-year tenure in that role, she oversaw nursing employment and travel nurse contracting at a Level 1 Trauma Hospital in Michigan. Understanding the challenges travel nurses faced, Torrento founded Health Providers Choice Inc. (HPC) in 2003. Through Torrento’s extensive experience and her role as President and CEO, HPC provides travel placement of registered nurses and allied health professionals to hospital systems nationally.