- Katie Sinclair ’22
Exercise is one of those things that most people dread, but afterward, you feel amazing! For me I tell myself to focus on the effects, it’s only one hour out of a 24 day, and after you feel ready to conquer the world!
Obviously, exercise is great for your physical appearance, but what are its impacts on your mental health? Exercise can improve your sleep, because your body temperature drops, as well as your stress levels and anxiety. I mean who doesn’t want a great night’s sleep! It improves both your mood and your stress levels. When you are physically active the chemicals in your brain produce fewer stress hormones and more endorphins. Getting active allows you to live in the moment, forcing you not to think about the past or the future, but still giving you the energy to tackle any work for the rest of the day. A small amount of exercise a day can have lasting effects, including a better mood and outlook on each day!
So why take the time out of your day to exercise? I think that everyone can agree that a day at school drains the life out of most everyone, so it is nice to take a break before tackling the hours of homework that lay ahead of you. It is hard to push yourself to go outside when all you feel like doing is watching Netflix, but I have learned that getting active really is a better mental break than watching tv!
Exercise is a time to focus on just yourself. It is a time of solitude where you can relieve stress by pushing yourself, and in the end, feeling great. Suddenly it is just you and whatever activity that you are doing, the school does not exist for that short period of time! While it is great to be alone sometimes it can also be nice to share the time with friends. This is where sports come along, and lucky for us SHP offers all kinds of different sports for everyone, no matter your level. You get to share a common goal with teammates, and bond over something that each person enjoys doing, while still staying fit and come home feeling amazing!
But how do I fit exercise into my busy schedule? Well, first do not focus on trying to do a super intense workout every day. Look ahead at your week and try to find days when you have a lighter load of homework, this way you can find a short amount of time in your day to do something for yourself. It is easy to get into a mindset that in order to stay fit you must workout super hard at the gym each day, but that is not true. Your body needs time to rest after an intense workout, so allow your body a couple of days each week to relax and recuperate.
Everyone can fit exercise into their life! You do not need to attend fancy workout classes all the time or go to the gym every day. Try just going outside for a quick couple mile run or walk around your neighborhood! I love to go on a short run and then find a quick 15-20 minute high- intensity interval class or Tabata class online. This is when youtube becomes a best friend because there because is everything from a guided bike or running classes, to the floor and core routines, and post-workout stretches! On a more intense day, I love finding high-intensity youtube classes and incorporating them into my workout routine! F
or me, even on the days when I have a lot of homework, I make time in my life to active. Whether it is just going for a quick walk or bike ride, or finding a youtube class that I can do between homework assignments! Also take advantage of the workout opportunities that SHP has to offer, whether it is participating in a sport or getting involved in the weight training program. Sacred Heart has so much to offer fitness-wise, even weight training during your free periods or breaks!
Photo from Youtube, provided by Katie Sinclair ’22