Nursing is a very time-consuming and engaging job. It is a job that requires complete attention at all times with little or no time left to do anything else throughout the day. With time, the value of one’s health and fitness is rapidly increasing, especially after the pandemic. With that in mind, constant rotating shifts make keeping fit a challenging affair for nurses.
As nurses are around sick patients a lot, their health should be a priority, and with a pandemic that’s showing no signs of slowing down, regular exercise is crucial. Nowadays, healthcare facilities need nurses on their toes, on multiple shifts to cater to patient admissions. Nurses with poor health and basic qualifications struggle to find work because they can’t operate in various shifts, lack the knowledge and expertise to handle complex situations.
To counter the lack of knowledge, most nurses have chosen online master’s nursing programs to enhance their clinical education and expertise. With added educational qualifications, nurses can progress in their careers and learn about staying healthy.
Following are some ways for nurses to stay fit with a busy schedule.
HIT WORKOUT AT HOME:
After a long, tiring day at work, nurses won’t find time to visit a gym but can always choose home workouts to incorporate into their daily routine. There are various videos and exercises available on the internet that nurses can choose conveniently and add activities that align with their schedule.
This saves time of commute from the gym and makes it easier to get a workout in. Even a single session of cardio is helpful since it can be done with minimal equipment. Exercises like lunges, sit-ups, squats, burpees will help get blood flowing and enhance overall immunity.
UTILIZING LUNCH BREAKS:
Most nurses get an hour or more as lunch breaks and can easily squeeze in a quick run or visit the gym for thirty minutes or so. Working out during the day will help eliminate boredom and tiredness after a hectic and packed morning and provides the energy needed to stay active throughout the later shift. This will also help nurses cope with workplace stress and feel more energetic.
It Is commonly quoted, “you are what you eat,” which is undoubtedly true. When nurses pay attention to what they consume, most of them will see a significant lack in their day-to-day unhealthy eating habits. Once nurses start mindful eating, they see a difference in their overall health and automatically feel energized and motivated.
It is, however, quite difficult to track each and everything you eat while you have such long working hours, but meal planning can be a life-changer for healthcare workers. Nurses can prepare meals in lunch boxes on the weekend for the week to come and can reheat and enjoy at any time. This will help nurses remain more conscious about their eating habits and maintain fitness.
ADD BRISK WALKING:
Sometimes it’s not feasible for a nurse to take out time for exercise due to a busy and tiresome schedule. However, a brisk walk every day for fifteen minutes is excellent for improving stamina and maintaining fitness. It doesn’t have to be an intensive workout at all times; just a stroll around the neighborhood will allow nurses to have a breath of fresh air, a change of scenery, and improved levels of concentration.
Brisk walking for 20-30 minutes gets the heart rate up and helps the mind to remain active for long hours at work. This is very effective if nurses try to stay fit but cannot manage time for gym or exercises. Plus, it is comparatively easy to squeeze in a thirty-minute walk rather than an intensive workout.
DO PLANKS; MAINTAIN A BALANCE:
Planks are one of the few movements that engage almost all supporting muscles of the body. To develop strong balancing powers, nurses should regularly do planks for at least 2-3 minutes a day. It’s an exercise that involves the core and helps maintain balance.
Planks are done by putting the forearms on the ground onto the mat and keep the back straight with support from the toes. Planks can be challenging during the first few days, but you can include them as an everyday workout for 15-20 minutes.
No matter how busy and engaging a work schedule is, all healthcare workers need a good night’s rest and 8 hours of sleep. It would be best to create a program where nurses sleep a minimum of 7-8 hours as doctors prescribe. If nurses lack sleep, it automatically affects their performance as they feel sluggish and tired.
Lack of enough sleep also causes the mind’s ability to make quick decisions, which increases the chances of making medical errors.
Healthcare workers must take good care of themselves. Investing time and attention in staying fit will help them be more vigilant and effective in their work and reduce the chances of medical errors. It is not just the nurses who need to stay fit; every healthcare worker needs to prioritize their health to take good care of their patients.
Through planning and attention, it is possible to squeeze in a quick workout now and then. The importance of exercise can’t be stressed enough. The long working hours and multiple shifts put nurses in a vulnerable state of falling ill, which must be avoided at all costs.