A career in writing might be hazardous to your health. That’s right, down-right, hazardous. Just like anything else in your writing life, you must be self-disciplined and aware and apply that skill to everything in your life, including your health.
Writers often find themselves sitting for long stretches of time, either researching, reading, or writing. Sitting stationary, in a dream of muses, forgetting about the clock, and often sitting in one position for hours.
That is why a daily exercise routine is essential to the longevity of a writer. It is important to your back and spine that you stretch every day and keep limber. If you don’t, within just a few ten-hour sitting/writing days, your muscles become sore and your spine stiff. You don’t need arthritis of the spine to make yourself too miserable to sit and write.
Try to walk every day; I don’t mean you need to spend your time on a two-hour walk, but get up and move your body for at least twenty minutes a day. If it is too cold or rainy to walk where you live, you need to invest in a treadmill or a walking DVD. It is also essential for your heart and digestive tract to do this.
Lots of authors I know complain about digestive and stomach problems, especially if they are over thirty-five. Walk, walk, walk before you sit, sit, sit, all day.
Make sure you are eating semi-light but nutritious meals. I know you have heard this a million times, everywhere. But really, you need to feed your brain and keep your blood sugar balanced because if you don’t, it affects your ability to concentrate and stay focused on your project.
Also, we all know the stories about the large amounts of alcohol/drugs some authors supposedly consume. Well, in this day and age, most authors I know keep their alcohol consumption to non-work days and write with a clear head and clear thoughts.
Just beware, this is your health that is at stake, and if you want to live long enough to enjoy the accolades of a “Great American Author.” Use your self-discipline, not just to write but also to take care of your health.