As I cautiously entered the room, somehow magnified by the humungous weight training equipment and the bustling crowd of students, I was more than just a little apprehensive. I was nervous about this personal fitness program and the posters of athletes with gigantic muscles and beads of perspiration running down their face, certainly didn’t help calm my nerves and rising heartbeat. I was soon to realize that enrolling in this course was one of the best choices I had made all year, in regards to me developing both mentally and physically. It took just two weeks for me to realize that everyone else in the class was just as nervous as myself, it was quite impossible to end up looking like a wrestler in less than a year and the benefits of this increased fitness program were indeed numerous. I had never planned on the benefits of running influencing me in other aspects of life. I knew I loved the feeling of simply moving across the ground and being in control of the entire effort.
Running allowed me to gain a renewed sense of energy, determination, motivation and concentration that I was able to apply in a practical sense, to my academics, extra curricular activities and sports. It also improved my cardiovascular system and decreased my resting heartbeat. In addition, I discovered the “runner’s high” during this time and it has helped me maintain a positive outlook and cope better with stress. However, running is not the only activity I managed to benefit from these past two weeks. All the cardiovascular, strength, endurance and flexibility tests we endured were a lot of fun and allowed me an opportunity to set safe, yet challenging goals for myself in order to improve upon my personal fitness.
It also made me realize that my results were personal as they applied to the strengths and weaknesses of my body and the only person I could compete against was myself. It helped knowing that everybody else was around the same level of fitness as me and were eager to learn new skills and hone previously learned skills. This contributed to a very positive learning environment, in which the emphasis was on both individual effort and group activities.
Taking part in all these activities and discussions allowed me assess and reevaluate my current lifestyle and motivated me to stay physically active every day and make healthy lifestyle choices. In fact, I have joined the cross country team again this year and lost 3 pounds since the beginning of the year. I no longer feel a sense of impending doom every time I enter the weight room. Now, I am able to confidently walk into the room, both mentally and physically prepared to set higher goals for myself and maintain a positive attitude about my self-image.
The goals I have set for myself this year include maintaining a healthy body weight, develop stronger abdominal muscles, remain physically active throughout the year and carefully keep track of my calorie intake. I’m very excited about the martial arts and swimming unit they are my favourite sports. I’m also thrilled at the opportunity of being able to practice yoga and Pilates, as I have never done them before. All in all, I am very pleased with the progress I have made so far and I’m looking forward to an enlightening, eventful year.
Courtney from Study Moose
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