SLC@Home – Physical Wellbeing
Did you know that 37 thousand billion billion chemical reactions happen in the human body every second? Our bodies are complex machines and each one has its own unique set of challenges and needs. On a daily basis most individuals have 3 basic ways we can support what happens in our bodies (that includes what happens in the brain): what we drink, what we eat, and how we move.
As we go through these sections, we want to recognize that each body is different and ask that you always follow the individual advice given to you by your personal doctor and/or healthcare workers.
Our brains are 85% water, and our body as a whole is 60% water. It comes as no surprise that water is pretty important to sustain optimal function.
The SLC knows how important access to water is for your health and your academics, which is why we have a water bottle refill station on every floor. Now that you are working from home, take advantage of your own water bottle refill station being as close as the kitchen sink!
Consider the following three reasons to stay hydrated:
- Attention and Memory Functions: Our brains depend on water! Water helps give the brain the energy it needs to carry out important functions like memory and thought process while you study.
- Improvement of Concentration: A hydrated brain is an efficient brain. Hydration helps the transportation of nutrients to the brain and keeps out the toxins. Water also helps the production of hormones and neurotransmitters in the brain. When these transmitters are running smoothly, your memory, performance and concentration are enhanced. To put this simply, information flows easily between brain cells when they are hydrated!
- Calming the Restlessness: Drinking water is known to calm down your nerves! Water has a cooling effect on the body as a whole, and this effect is felt more on the mind. When you feel thirsty during exam prep or during an exam, you are bound to become restless. Have a glass of water before and during study times and exams. It will help you feel calm and composed.
Have difficulty remembering to hydrate? Try these apps:
Daily Water Tracker Reminder
This app is available for iPhone and Android. Set your daily water intake goal and then log every ounce with just a tap. View a detailed stats update after every glass to see how close you’re getting to your daily goal, or review 7 and 30-day charts for an idea of your overall progress.
Aqualert: Water Tracker Daily
This app is available for both iPhone and Android. It notifies you throughout the day to keep you properly hydrated. Plus, it uses your activity level to calculate your daily water requirements so you’re getting what you need. A handy bedtime mode keeps the app from reminding you during the night and a graphic display of your hydration level and daily consumption keeps you on track.
If you are looking to stay hydrated with a side dose of fun, this is the app for you! It’s available for both iPhone and Android. It keeps track of how much water you drink, and each glass also waters the app’s plants so you both can thrive! Every day you can collect and take care of little plants to get hydrated and grow together!
With all those chemical reactions happening in your brain and body, it’s easy to understand why it needs fuel to keep running. But not all fuel is created equal!
We are all a little different in what we need and we understand that you may have restrictions or preferences that vary. The important thing is that you remember to take breaks to eat proper meals and healthy snacks that are good for your individual body.
Choosing healthy snacks such as fresh fruit, popcorn, yoghurt, or nuts will help keep you going throughout the day! Snacks that are high in refined sugar may feel good in the short term, but after that quick burst of energy they can leave you feeling flat and in a slump. Check out this article by the BBC or this one by Study International for some snacks that will keep you going without the crash!
Our friends at RU Student Life know all about the importance of eating right, especially during exam time. They’ve provided a great guide on the whats, whens, and hows of eating during exams with some surprising facts about bananas.
Pro Tip: stopping to make snacks and meals while studying can sometimes feel stressful or use of valuable time. To make the most of your time and energy prep a few meals in advance and plan out snacks that are easy to grab and eat!
Want to stay healthy AND budget friendly? See what RU Student Life recommends as their top 5 budget friendly snacks!
Movement is good for the mind and the body. It’s not important how you move, but that you are moving! Put your body in motion and feel your heartbeat quicken, you’ll soon find yourself feeling a little healthier and a little happier.
Movement helps support our immune function and elevate our mood! It can improve our sleep, digestion, energy levels, and self-confidence. Movement can help us clear our minds and regain our calm.
Move in a way that is safe and right for your body. When incorporating new movements always start slow. We recognize that our resources provided below may not be right for your body. If you have resources that have been helpful for you or are designed for specific needs we would love for you to share them with us so we can share them with the Toronto Metropolitan University community! Message us on Instagram @slctorontomet or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
TorontoMet Recreation is providing a variety of online classes as well as resources from around the world! Explore their website for more information and online tools.
Check out these three awesome videos they are featuring:
- Meghan Trainor – Me Too | The Fitness Marshall | Dance Workout
- CHAIRFIT with Eric Savva
- Yoga For Anxiety and Stress
If you enjoyed “Yoga for Anxiety and Stress,” we recommend exploring Adriene’s playlist “Yoga for Uncertain Times.” The videos average 20 minutes in length, are clear, thorough, and help focus your movement on specific challenges.
Full Body Workout
If you are looking for a full body workout, Fitness Blender’s YouTube channel and the Nike Training Club app (available for iPhone and Android) are both great resources. They offer a variety of workouts that can be done at home without specialized equipment.
Movement While You Work
You may not think of studying as movement, but as we type, write, reach for the mouse or scroll on a trackpad, we are moving. Often these movements are repeated for hours at a time! Remember to take breaks to stretch and move around in ways you don’t while you are seated. Check out this guide to office ergonomics to minimize strain on your body and maximize comfort.
Creating healthy habits is difficult! Whether it’s remembering to drink water, meditate in the morning, or take a 15 minute break to dance around and move your body! If you are looking for one app to track all your new awesome habits, we recommend checking out Habitica (iPhone, Android and Desktop) or StikK (iPhone and Android).
Remember, it’s not about getting it perfect. It’s about doing your best to set yourself up for success and being kind to yourself when you trip along the way. You got this!