Exercising Through COVID

Anna Saputo

While COVID still rages on, students have the opportunity to focus on keeping themselves active no matter what may be going on in the world.

“While sports were shut down, I did workouts and found ways to still practice volleyball at home,” Eisenhower sophomore Aubrey Marshall said. “Now that gyms are open, I am back to playing with my team. For the school volleyball season, I practice every day at Eisenhower. My exercise goal is to exercise at least four days a week. I can achieve this by doing 10-minute, at-home work outs on the days that I do not have practice.”

Students with a high level of activity take up the challenge and find joy in exercising daily.

“During COVID and my senior year, I have been very active,” Utica senior Brittany Shock said. “My swim season kept me in shape, from my club team in summer to my high school team, which ended in November. I do miss swim, but in the meantime, I have been going on runs in my neighborhood and local parks. I am in team sports and weight training classes at Utica. Because I am always active and made it a part of my lifestyle, I simply cannot live without being active in some way.”

Staying determined and encouraged are helpful key factors in aiming higher to achieve set ambitions.

“My family and friends motivate me beyond words,” Utica senior Carson Nicoletti, cross country track athlete, said.  “I think one of the biggest factors is the love that I have for what I do. I follow a routine that, over time, I learned works for me, so I have stuck with it. I love to try new types of things to improve upon myself. I have many goals, but I just want to make sure I am enjoying what I am doing and to have fun with it.”

Those who are not big on intense workouts plan to apply certain exercise habits to infiltrate into their daily lives.

“I would not start with something crazy that I might not be able to handle doing often,” Stevenson junior Sofia Kastelan said. “I would start small and build up my routine over time. Most recently, I have been trying to do the bare minimum by taking walks every day.”

The benefits of executing quality physical health and exercise show in the results.

“Exercise is incredibly important, not only in keeping up our physical health, but also in mental health,” David Schwesinger, Malow Jr. High physical education teacher, said. “The students have been doing great. I have seen a big difference in their self-confidence, both in the classroom and in life. We have been running online workouts ranging from 20-45 minutes at a time, such as High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), As Many Rounds/Reps As Possible (AMRAPS), Yoga, Every Minute On The Minute (EMOMS), cardio and ab workouts. Kids seem to enjoy them and are able to see their results throughout the semester. I think once they see results and feel better, they get more ‘hooked.’ Once you get in a habit of exercise and stick to it, you feel better and healthier.”