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Taylor Swift's Rules for Healthy Living

The chart-topping singer-songwriter talks about how diet, exercise, and writing help her stay happy and balanced.

Swift's Early Songwriting continued...

"It was my job after school every day for two years," she remembers. "I had this little office in the hall, and I was writing songs based on what other people might cut. It really immersed me in the gorgeous songwriting community, and I've never forgotten what it's like to write for a job." 

These days, Swift has the luxury of writing only for herself, a process she says keeps her honest. "From a young age, any time I would feel pain I would think, 'It's OK, I can write about this after school,'" she says. "And still, anytime something hurts, like rejection or sadness or loneliness, or I feel joy or I fall in love, I ask myself, 'Can I write a song about this so I know how I feel?'" Making such private thoughts public doesn't faze her. "I'm only thinking about the person I'm writing it for, so it stays personal," she says, "and the fact that people actually care about what I have to say makes any fear pale in comparison." 

No one will ever hear the naturally cheerful Swift whimper about any element of her fame, even if it has resulted in days spent touring and nights in hotel rooms while her peers are off at college and socializing. "I've been doing this so long that I don't get road-weary," she says. "I accept that I'm never going to be in the same place for too long and that's just my life. What I feel is pure excitement."

How Taylor Swift Stays Healthy

Still, Swift acknowledges that riding hours on a bus, strutting the stage, and not sleeping in her own bed can take its toll, both physically and mentally. Crucial to staying balanced is sticking to a comforting routine, no matter where she is. When she gets to her hotel room, the first thing she does is unpack -- even if she's there for only one night. "I do it everywhere I go," she says with a laugh. "I really like the way it feels to have my clothes put away in drawers and my shoes in the closet." Swift also always travels with candles, and she's never without her iPod, onto which she is constantly downloading new music. 

Listening to fellow artists' latest releases is what inspires Swift to exercise, and regardless of her tour schedule, she makes sure to squeeze in an hour-long run on a treadmill every day.

"For me, running is about blasting a whole bunch of new songs and running to the beat. It's also good because it makes me find a gym wherever I am," she says. Unlike other famous colleagues, "I'm very much out in the world, and I love exploring the places we go when we tour. It's important for me to live a full life." 

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