Quick Fitness Tips for Travel Nurses

As a travel nurse, you’re constantly on the move. Whether you’re caring for patients in crisis or on a plane to start your next assignment, your mind is probably focused on checking items off your to-do list. We understand that your days can feel chaotic, and that sometimes you put your own well-being on the back burner. We also recognize that staying physically (and mentally) fit is critical for you to thrive, both as a nurse and as a human being.

We have a few tips on how you can prioritize physical fitness and stick to healthy habits when your environment and schedule change every few months: 

Snag a Low-Cost Gym Membership
Commercial gyms, like Planet Fitness, offer month-to-month memberships that give members 24/7 access to facilities all over the country. Planet Fitness is available in all 50 states and memberships start at just $10/month.

Get Outside
Who said exercise has to be done inside? Make the most of your travel nursing assignment by leaning into your adventurous spirit and exploring the great outdoors. Download these apps to get familiar with nearby parks and trails:

AllTrails – This is an app we have mentioned before but we wanted to share it again because it is so great! Whether you want to walk, hike, bike, or scope out wheelchair and pet-friendly trails, AllTrails has you covered. Pick the perfect path for your next outing from a comprehensive listing of trails, all verified by experts and reviewed by a global community of adventurers like you.

NSP – The NSP app was created by National Park Service staff—people who know national parks — to help you make the most of your visit. Users have access to a ton of features, like interactive maps, park tours, accessibility, news, and events, and more. This official National Park Service app is free for both Apple and Android devices and gives users the ability to explore more than 400 parks nationwide.

Hiking Project App – Do you love hiking? Consider downloading the Hiking Project app. It’s totally free and allows you to explore more than 650,000 miles of trails with the ability to track your routes. This app works in remote locations. And the best part? No cell signal is required to utilize its GPS – it functions “offline.”

Pack Lightweight Equipment
When you’re traveling, space in your bags is limited. So bringing a bunch of heavy, bulky fitness gear with you isn’t ideal. However, there is a middle ground. Consider packing a yoga mat (so you aren’t laying directly on the floor of your temporary home away from home) and a few resistance bands. These items are lightweight and take up minimal space.

Resistance bands can be used in a ton of ways, from basic bicep curls to advanced core work. Regardless of your fitness level, incorporating resistance bands into your routine helps you build smaller and larger muscle groups, while allowing you to maintain slow, controlled movements for a great burn.

Focus on Body Weight Exercises
No gym, no problem! Body weight exercises like squats, lunges, push-ups, plank variations, bicycles, and the hollow-body holds can keep you strong without any equipment. You can do body weight exercises anywhere – inside your room, at the park or on your balcony (bonus points if you have a great view). Pilates is also a super effective, low-impact exercise style that aims to strengthen muscles while improving alignment and flexibility. Same goes for yoga.

Take Advantage of Social Media
Thousands of free fitness videos are at your fingertips, ranging from beginner to advanced, on a variety of social media platforms. If you’ve got internet access, check out YouTube and Instagram for
free live and pre-recorded workouts each day. Don’t forget to invite your friends! Even if they’re not in the same room as you, it can still be fun to take a virtual class together.

We hope these suggestions give you inspiration to keep your physical fitness top-of-mind while enjoying the excitement of your new travel nursing assignment.



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LeaderStat specializes in direct care staff, interim leadership, executive recruitment, travel nursing and consulting for healthcare organizations nationwide.