Yay! You took the plunge, left your 9-5 job behind, and hit the road on your digital nomad journey.
Now you’re wondering how to stay fit and healthy while you forge along this new path. Been there, trust me!
As a single parent traveling around Asia with my young son, I had to learn to adapt my health (and his) to our travels.
I’m here to take those worries away and leave you with a few easy tips to follow as you embark down the road less traveled.
After all, a new road doesn’t mean you quit staying fit and healthy, instead, you just have to find new ways to do so!
The three fundamental areas digital nomads tend to overlook or neglect as they fulfill their dreams of working while traveling are how much they move, what they eat, and how they set up their workspace.
But this doesn’t have to be the case! There are simple ways you can modify your daily routine to up your game and be the best digital nomad you can be.
Here are 3 sure-fire tips to stay fit and healthy as a digital nomad.
1. Move Those Muscles
One of the best parts of being a digital nomad can also end up being one of its biggest drawbacks: working digitally.
I know you’re thinking, “Wait a minute, how is working digitally a drawback?”
Well, if you’re making that money, it means you’re at a computer, on a laptop, thumbing away on your phone, or tapping on that tablet for the majority of your day.
All of which are the opposite of moving.
It’s true that digital nomads get to set their own schedule, but getting stuck in front of a screen for several hours in a row is almost a given.
So, what are some ways to get moving without that gym membership (since it’s hard to have one when you’re on the go) and without any exercise equipment (since it’s not always feasible to travel with it)?
One of the simplest things you can do is… walk. That’s right, get up off that booty and move!
Live that digital nomad lifestyle to the fullest.
Walk to take in the local sites and sounds.
Got a virtual meeting with a client? Get some earbuds with a mic and take it on the go.
Instead of taking a cab to the farmer’s market, walk and soak up the culture and people around you.
And if walking isn’t your thing, go by bike, or run, or hike. The point is to be up and moving whenever and wherever an opportunity permits rather than sitting all day long.
Another great way to get in some movement while also exercising is to do bodyweight workouts. This is where you use your body’s natural weight to provide resistance against gravity and engage those muscles.
This might be a new idea to you, so one easy way to do this is to invest in a deck of Body Weight Exercise cards or you can download a fitness app geared towards not using equipment.
One of the highest-rated free apps out there is Home Workout – No Equipment. This app features warm-up and stretching routines and provides detailed video and animation guides for each and every equipment-free workout. It also tracks your progress and allows you to customize workout reminders.
There are plenty of other amazing apps out there with exercise videos and workouts, spend a few minutes to find one that works for you based on where you are and what you have around you.
No matter which of these options you choose to utilize, they’ll all provide you with some form of movement which in turn will help you to stay fit and keep healthy.
2. Curate Your Cuisine
One of the hardest things for digital nomads to regulate is their eating habits.
Traveling affords the opportunity to try so many different and delicious foods, though it can also create a dependency on take-out and eating out if you are not prepared.
So prepare yourself! It’s easier than you think.
The first thing to do is get yourself a water bottle and up your water intake. Staying hydrated will keep you alert while you type the day away.
It can also help to reduce those snack cravings we all fall prey to when we’re too engrossed in our work to actually get up and make something.
And in case you didn’t know, that cup of coffee or tea counts towards your daily goal too.
Now, there’s no hard and fast rule to determine how much water you need to drink.
Many factors affect the amount including climate, exertion levels, and food intake, just to name a few. The general recommendation is 11.5 cups for women and 15.5 cups for men. If you want a more in-depth look into how much water to drink check out this article here.
Now that you’ve got a reasonable idea of how to handle your fluids, it’s time to take a look at what you’re eating.
Some of the easiest ways to make sure you’re eating right while traveling the world are to meal plan, meal prep, and always have healthy snacks on hand.
This can be done quickly with just a pen and a piece of paper. Jot down seven ideas for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and make a grocery list based on those meals. Add in a few snacks like fresh fruit and vegetables, nuts and granola, and tadaa!
You are now a meal plan pro and well on your way to avoiding the temptation of stuffing your face full of junk food and take-out all day, every day.
If you’re one of those people who prefer to have an app for that, there are numerous meal prep apps out there.
All you need to do is look for one that will let you import and create your own recipes, have the option to create a weekly meal plan, and one that will generate an automatic grocery list for you too.
As long as it has these features, you’ll be able to meal plan and meal prep and never have to worry about what’s for dinner ever again!
Now that you’re up and moving and know how to balance what you eat, let’s take a look at that workspace and how to hook it up so you can take that last step to staying fit and healthy as a digital nomad.
3. Wise Up Your Workspace
I know what you’re thinking – how does my workspace help me stay fit and healthy?
Staying fit and healthy isn’t always about what you do with your body like moving and eating right, but what the world around it is doing to it as well.
Creating a favorable workspace will channel your inner wise woman and bring her some much-needed respite because…
The most important thing you can do with your workspace is to take a break from it.
You are your own boss now. You don’t have the same work constraints you used to have.
Set a timer so that every hour you’re getting up and getting the blood flowing again. Give your eyes a rest and loosen up those muscles which have been atrophying while you sat at that screen.
Anything that gives you a 5-10 minute break from your workspace will do. Calisthenics, jumping rope, chair yoga, whatever you want.
Now let’s get down to the finer points of set-up.
The most important aspect of your workspace is how you’re sitting.
Have you ever sat down to work and an hour or so later realized your shoulders were hunched over while your back curled in on itself? That is not a good feeling! You’ll likely need some expert deep tissue massage to ease that kind of self-inflicted strain.
Good news though! This problem can be avoided by making sure that you can sit tall with your legs at 90° and with your screen at or slightly below eye level if possible. Sitting this way will alleviate muscle fatigue and eye strain.
Now, on the topic of eyes, invest in a pair of blue light glasses. Blue light from screens increases the likelihood of blurry vision, dry eyes, cataracts, and can even affect your sleep patterns as well. And no digital nomad wants to experience those side effects.
These aren’t new ideas and you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to implement them, just a digital nomad looking to up your game.
So take these tips for the awesome advice they are and incorporate some change into your digital nomad lifestyle so you can full-on rock it by staying fit and healthy.
Making the big bucks takes self-discipline, so you’ve likely already got the inner power needed to incorporate these suggestions into your daily routine.
The hard part is taking the next step and actually doing it.
Grab that water bottle, jot down what you’re going to make to eat for the next couple of days, or schedule yourself a break from it all to go for a walk. Pick one thing to improve upon and then slowly make changes to the rest.
And if you’re feeling like that inner power or self-discipline might be lacking or you’re just not sure how to slide into that digital nomad lifestyle even though you totally want to, check out my FREE Masterclass to get you started on your way.
In 90 Day VA, Esther teaches her students how to research and repurpose current content into blogs for the VAI website. Kristen is the student we’ve chosen this week to feature what she’s learned in the course. Get to know her:
Kristen Lewis is a virtual assistant here to give you the freedom to focus on creating new products and services for your business. When she’s not helping small businesses boost their productivity she loves to travel and write about her travels. She’s a member of 90 Day VA and assists with administrative, business development, social media, and content marketing tasks. To see all the services she offers and how she can help you, check out her website here.