How to Stay Healthy When You’re On Tour

TThere are few things worse in the music world than being on tour and waking up sick. In my last post, we talked about how to forge through and still play a good gig. Now let’s talk about how to prevent yourself from getting sick in the first place. One of the most important things you can do for yourself as a performing artist is to stay healthy. Here are a few tips to help you along:

  • Drink water! Your body is mostly water – so it stands to reason that you need to drink water, and lots of it. Water will help fluish toxins from your body and keep that entire machine of yours running smoothly. And when you feel tired and unable to focus, most of the time it’s actually due to dehydration! Get a waterbottle that you can easily carry with you at all times, take sips all day long, and keep it refilled. Until you make it a habit, give yourself some reminders to make yourself drink. Set alarms on your phone. Tie it in with an action (“Everytime I stand up, I will take a drink of water”). Just get to drinking!
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  • Exercise. If you belong to a franchised gym, make sure you have a membership that allows you to visit any of their locations. Otherwise, find a way to exercise on the road. Pick up running, research group exercise classes in the area where you’ll be staying, use the hotel gym. You could invest in a home DVD workout program that you can take with you. Or buy a fitness magazine and follow their at-home suggestions. Find something you like and that travels well. Your body was meant to be active. And while being active on stage counts a little, it’s not enough to keep you in top shape. And it’s not about getting super skinny. It’s about getting (or staying) healthy so you can give your best performance every night!
  • Eat well! And eat clean. Eating clean simply means avoiding processed foods. If it has more than 5 ingredients and/or you can’t pronounce most of them, don’t eat it. I know it’s hard to avoid fast food when you’re on the road, especially when you might not have the opportunity to cook for yourself. Invest in books and magazines that can give you some great recipe ideas to keep it fresh and give you ideas for food to eat on the go. Or check out free resources like Your health and the way your body looks is actually 80% related to how you eat. If you’re eating junk, you’re not giving your body the right fuel that it needs to function at its best.
  • Take your vitamins. Check with your doctor first, of course, since I’m not one, but I personally take vitamin D3, which is good for bone health and boosts immunity (supposedly better than vitamin C!), and I look for opportunities to add ground flaxseed or ground chia seed to my recipes as a source of omega-3 fatty acid, which acts as an anti-inflammatory and helps reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, among other benefits. Check with your doctor to see which supplements you might benefit from.
  • You’ll like this one: REST! Take a few days off. At best, be sure to schedule a few off days into your tour, even just to veg out and relax. In a regular exercise routine, you need at least 1-2 days off per week for your body to recover properly so you actually see the effects of your hard work. The same goes for playing gigs. If you never take a day off, you’ll just run yourself into the ground and burnout. And that makes for some crappy gigs and a poor future for your music career! Sleep, read, sight-see, play some videogames – just take a day or two off each week.

What do you do to stay healthy? Please share YOUR tips in the comments below!

Kerri Randall is a singer, performer, writer, and… (wait for it)… fitness instructor. She has performed throughout Milwaukee and Wisconsin with multiple bands, and has even sung at the historic Pabst Theater with the Milwaukee Police Band and Jazz Ensemble. Her passion is entertaining and inspiring others to think, laugh, and have fun. Kerri believes the artist community can only thrive when we all encourage and support each other!

What do you do to stay healthy? Please share YOUR tips in the comments below!