I’m stoked; in less than 24 hours’ time, I’ll be hitting that old dusty trail to Las Vegas for one of the world’s biggest music festivals, Electric Daisy Carnival!
While it’s a great party to attend, I’ll actually be working 2 out of 3 nights, keeping ravers happy, healthy and hydrated as part of the Ground Control festival team. I love EDC, and working on the festival team is a great way to give back to my community and still be able to enjoy the show.
We’ve been told that we’ll likely be walking over 20 miles over the course of the weekend as we patrol the endless acres of festival grounds.
Combine that with nocturnal work hours, millions of germs, the smoke and dust in the air, and the dry desert heat, and it’s a perfect 3-day recipe for getting sick or over-exhausted.
If you love festivals like me, you know it’s often an ordeal that requires serious stamina, and you may have even gotten sick after a really rough weekend. Fun times should never result in you being incapacitated and unable to work the next week, even if you did steal a kiss and ride the Ferris Wheel with some hot guy wearing only boxers and a unicorn head.
Some people train to party all year long, but for the rest of us, the days and weeks prior to the festival are unequivocally crucial in getting your body prepared for all the fun and exertion.
Some easy health tips to get you ready for any rave or festival:
- Stretch and foam roll daily. For the festival, focus on opening your hips, lower back, and legs. If you choose to do some light workouts, side lunges and planks are good choices, but anything that makes you really sore should be off the menu for the last week or so. Stretching between festival days, or on the grass between sets is always helpful, too!
- Engage in hardcore hydration. Drink at least 80 fluid ounces of water per day for the week before the festival to ensure that your cells stay squishy and your energy levels stay up. While you are dancing, the rule of thumb is to consume 16 ounces per hour, so buy a Camelbak or refillable canteen unless you like leaving the stage after every set.
- Support your immune system. As soon as you can, if you don’t already, start taking a daily hit of Vitamin C, Echinacea, or some other kind of Immune Support supplement. Sharing water and close personal space for three days often results in a diseased population. Whether it’s a small cold, or strep throat, it all sucks. So start popping that Airborne now, while you still feel human!
- Make wise shoe & sock selections. Festivals are 80% about the music and 20% about looking cute. We all want to be show stoppers, but I implore you to think seriously about your socks and shoes in order to avoid blistering and fatigue. This year after much deliberation, I’m taking my old reliable Nike Frees. They’re not my favorites by any stretch, but they’re supportive, already dirty, fit snugly, and have never given me pain or issues before. As for socks, try your best to spring for athletic brands that have moisture-wicking fabrics and supportive fit.
- Buy a nice set of earplugs. You will be SO GLAD you did. Earpeace is my preferred brand; I bought a special edition set of their HDs from one of my favorite record labels, and I carry them with me every time I go out. For a cheaper option, get the silicone kind from Walgreens – they work great for a few days. If you choose not to wear hearing protection, you can easily end up with tinnitus (ringing ears) or painful headaches for days afterward, and potentially permanent hearing loss, though you may not actually notice it for years.
I’m serious when it comes to all of these, but if you care about your fitness like I do, I’m especially serious about daily stretching and foam rolling. Remember the time I went out dancing, a mere two days before my last half marathon? Ten months later I am still dealing with pain in the back of my knee, my ankle and the arch of my foot. Wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy!
If you are not preparing your body, all it takes is one wild night to throw off all your hard work and put you on the bench. Just food for thought, my fellow party animals!
Accidents happen, but with preparation you can handle whatever the rave or the wilderness throws at you. If you can find me at the festival amid 400,000 other people in costumes, let’s hang! 😁