So the leaves are falling, the wind is blowing, and I’m thinking brrrrr. Especially today, it’s even been snowing! Here are a few thoughts on getting ready for the cooler weather and staying vocally healthy.
Questions for your consideration:
1. Are you drinking enough water? 8 – 10 glasses (8 oz. each) is the starting point for singers. If you are singing more than a couple of hours in a day then try and drink more that day. Please note that I mentioned “water” not coffee, tea, cola, or Starbucks. If you are consuming other liquids, and most of us do, then try and not count this as part of your “water” intake – because, well, it’s not. J
2. Do you have a humidifier going? Mine started running about a month ago. It is a high capacity humidifier and it runs 24/7. Colorado is super dry, emphasis on super. We need moisture any way we can get it! By the way – make sure and keep your humidifier filters clean or replace them often. Dirty, humid air doesn’t sound so good to breathe.
3. Are you sleeping? There are people I know that just “sleep off” any symptoms of an illness. In other words, if they aren’t feeling 100% they just nap, go to bed early, and give their body time to recuperate. Hmm, that’s a great idea for us to remember. Let’s not run our bodies, the Temple of the Holy Spirit, into the ground so to speak. We need them to run around and it sure is good to feel healthy.
4. What are you eating? Ok, yes I admit it, I’m kind of a health nut. Let’s just say that I’ve read a lot about good foods and supplements. I won’t bore you here with recommendations on what to take – besides I’m not a nutritionist or doctor and cannot give medical advice. I will say that I personally try and eat healthy foods besides taking high quality supplements (beginning with a really good multi-vitamin). During the fall and winter, I’m sure to also have on hand some immune system building supplements to take whenever I feel physically “off” or am around a bunch of people who are sick. A visit to your local health food store or some basic online research can give you a good start on what might be a benefit to you. Along this line if you have a big weekend, conference, or production that you are participating in – think about really feeding your body good meals/food (not just a bunch of quick sugary snacks) during and before that event. Ok enough, for now, about “health nut” issues. :-)
5. Are you keeping your voice WARM – inside and out? Have you thought about caring for your vocal folds by planning to warm up before singing? A planned and methodical warm-up time can REALLY help your voice immediately and help to prevent vocal injury over the long haul. It’s my number one recommendation to all singers. (This is also why I took the time to record the Vocal Warm-ups CD.) As far as keeping your voice warm on the outside – wearing a scarf over your mouth and around your neck in any kind of cool weather is a great idea for singers. Plus as an added benefit, scarves are really fashionable right now! Cool! (I mean Warm!)
6. Most importantly, remember that it is the Lord who made our bodies and it is He who gives us strength and health. I would encourage you to do even a quick study of what God’s word has to say on “health,” “healing,” and “well.” It’s quite encouraging!
Here’s to staying vocally healthy – have a happy fall season! – Kris –