Over the past year or so, as I’ve worked on losing weight and getting fit, I’ve really found myself trying to be conscious about how being a writer effects my activity levels. Staying healthy as a writer shouldn’t even be about being a writer – we should all want to be a little healthier as we go. Given that writing is such a solitary and sedentary thing, it’s even more important to be smart about your activity.
Staying active and making healthy choices doesn’t have to be hard, I promise. Even little change makes a difference. As I’ve worked over the past year, I’ve made little adjustments that have definitely helped me, so I wanted to share.
1. Think About What You Eat
I love my salty snacks – chips, pretzels, popcorn, you name it, I love it. Unfortunately, those aren’t good snacks. I still indulge every now and then (PMS is a hard week, y’all), but I’ve swapped out those snacks with things like greek yogurt and jerky. Both have less calories and they have more protein, leaving me less hungry after the snack.
2. Drink More Water
While so many writers love our coffee (I’m one of them, too), your body needs water. I use an app on my phone, Waterminder, to subtly remind me to drink water. I try to stick to water during the day and at the gym, so I’m always hydrated. Even if you aren’t big on plain water, try a flavored water. My local grocery store has Strawberry Sparkling Water, and I love that stuff.
I know, exercising doesn’t sound fun, especially when you’re getting started. But start small. Go for a twenty-minute walk. Join Planet Fitness (it’s literally only $10 a month). I know I’ve been so much happier and more productive when I’ve been actively going to the gym. Days I go to the gym, I typically write more words in my manuscript.If you want to be a successful writer, you need to take care of yourself as a person first. Click To Tweet
4. Go to Sleep
I know many writers tend to be night owls, pull all-nighters. You need your sleep. Go to sleep! If you’re struggling with going to sleep and getting into bed, read about how I readjusted my sleep schedule when I had to be at work at 6:45 a.m. every day.
5. Make Sure Your Work Space is Comfortable for You
I’ve talked about needing an ergonomic workspace and hacks you can use to make it work for you. When you’re sitting at a desk writing for hours, you need to be comfortable. While you’re working, be sure to take breaks. Stand up, stretch, move around. Sitting around all day isn’t good for you, so get out and enjoy some fresh air and move sometimes!
Now, nothing is going to be set in stone as far as how to get healthy. But being smart about what you eat and how you stay active will help you be healthier, which can definitely help with mental health, too.