10 Ways To Stay Healthy While Working A Crazy News Schedule
10 Ways To Stay Healthy While Working A Crazy News Schedule
So you decided you want…no, you NEED…to be healthier.
We’ve all been there. Especially those of us who have crazy schedules, work odd hours, or have constant schedule changes. But how? You don’t have time to work out. You barely have time to eat! I feel that. That was me. So, let me share some healthy tips that worked for me, and others that I’ve seen work for my friends.
First of all, let me say, I am not a medical professional. These are just some healthy suggestions. Always consult a professional about any serious health concerns you may have.
Now the first few tips may sound simple, but they are extremely important.
1. Drink water.
Let me be the first to say that I often live off of caffeine, and prayers, to get me through the day. However, drinking plenty of water is a MUST.
You could get a cute half, or full gallon, water jug to take with you to work. You can even bring it with you on shoots, to the gym, or wherever! Some jugs even have times and levels printed on them, so you can keep track of how much water you’re drinking. This can also help you hit your hydration goals.
2. Take a healthy multivitamin every day.
Doing this can help you get those vitamins that you may be missing in your diet. (Again, consult with a professional about specific meal plans or nutrition.)
3. Be conscious of what you’re drinking.
Those sweet coffees, teas, energy drinks, and sodas can be wreaking havoc on your body. I cut out sweet drinks totally a few years ago, and haven’t gone back. It did take a while to get used to.
You may cave every once in a while, but all I can say is…do it! I cannot tell you how much better I feel now that my system is free of all of those things.
Now, I do still have one cup of coffee a day, but I don’t use sweeteners or sugar and only add a little bit of cream or half-and-half. (“Ew, I could never!”) Yes, I thought that at first too. But like I said, I’m never going back!
Now all of those sweetened drinks taste horrible to me…and I’m good with that! Not only are you cutting out lots of sugar, you’re cutting out unnecessary calories that aren’t doing anything for you.
4. Be conscious of what you’re eating.
No, I’m not telling you to track every single calorie, or obsess over every piece of food you eat. If you struggle with serious eating disorders, consult a medical professional.
I just know that once I started paying attention to what I was eating, I was able to pinpoint what made me feel bad afterward. That’s really what I’m getting at here.
Are there times when you feel uncomfortable, or bloated or just plain horrible, after you eat? Think about what you just ate that could possibly make you feel that way. Once I started evaluating what made me feel bad, I could start working on making myself feel healthy.
5. Be active.
I know, I know… “But when?” With our schedules, it can certainly be tough. You don’t have to always go to a gym to be active though. Try to get up from your desk, and “do a lap” around the newsroom, outside of the station, or wherever you can walk.
You may feel ridiculous, at first. But I just announced it to everyone, “hey guys, I’m just getting my steps in,” and soon, several people joined in too! You may start a trend!
There are also tons of at home workouts available for free online. Does your apartment complex have a gym or workout center? Take advantage of it! Of course, you can always join a gym and try to go as much as you can.
The bottom line is, start creating the habit of moving your body. I know that for me, working out is my number one way to de-stress. We’ve all heard of the studies that show exercising releases endorphins, which make you feel better. Who doesn’t want that? …Especially in our line of work. Just try to do what you can when you can! Then, you can build off of that.
6. Set timers.
This can be for anything. Set a timer to remind you to eat breakfast, or lunch or a snack. Set a timer to remind you to get up and move or stretch. Just make sure that when the timer goes off, you actually do whatever you set it for.
7. Get a fitness watch, or fitness tracking app.
These things can also help remind you to get up and move, drink water, and you can track your progress! That way you can SEE your progress, and results, in writing!
8. Get plenty of sleep.
“Okay, now you’re just talking crazy!” I know, it can be soooo difficult. (Where are my fellow AM Newsers? Blackout curtains are your friend! Am I right?) However, getting plenty of sleep is crucial to your health.
This can also mean just taking time to wind down. For example, maybe you need to start your bedtime routine earlier. Maybe it’s setting a time to put your phone down, and not look at it until a certain time the next day. Maybe you need to do some yoga, or just turn all the technology off and sit in a dark room for 15 minutes. Whatever that looks like for you, make it a priority to get great sleep.
9. Saying “no.”
This is something I had to learn personally. I can’t tell you how many times I reached the point of exhaustion, because I just kept going despite being tired. I needed rest but didn’t, because I had FOMO.
However, I reached a point where I decided my health needed to come first. This could look like saying “no” to going out with co-workers or friends. Saying “no” to answering that email in the middle of the night. Saying “no” to toxic relationships of any kind that keep you up at night or make you feel drained. This brings us to the final tip.
10. Mind your mental health.
We often talk about physical health—which is necessary and very important. But mental, emotional, and spiritual health are equally as important.
Do not be afraid to reach out to someone if you are struggling. This business can be brutal in many, many ways. The things we see, hear, and experience can run the gamut. Some companies have counseling services for their employees. But if you’re not comfortable using those, there are other anonymous hotlines you can utilize.
The important thing here is that you are dealing with the issues you are facing. Please don’t feel ashamed to get help! We all struggle from time to time, and there’s no shame in needing to vent or talk through the chaos. Also know that you’ve got lots of other journalists on your side!
Remember, your “diet” is not just what you eat. It’s what you read, listen to, surround yourself with, watch, and so on. It even includes how you talk to yourself. So be mindful of what you are purposefully doing.
Discipline can be a tough thing to establish, but once you do, it makes a big difference!
Hopefully these tips help you get on track to becoming the best you! You’ve got this! 💪🏼😀