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The zoom fatigue is real. It’s no secret that many of us are already feeling the effects of virtual learning as the semester kicks into full swing. Your mornings are spent sitting at your desk or maybe in bed, just to end up back in the same spot to complete homework assignments during the day. Your Apple Watch or FitBit may be buzzing to get you to move, but it’s a lot harder to complete your daily step goals without that walk to class. Your health and fitness can still be a priority between Zoom classes and homework. 

The American Psychiatric Association recommends keeping active while working from home to improve your mental health along with your physical health. As the iconic Elle Woods once said, “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy.” And she isn’t wrong. U.S. News notes the emotional benefits of working out include reduced anxiety, reduced risk of depression, and improved sleep quality. This switch to virtual learning has been hard on all of us in different ways. A quick workout can boost your mood and break up your day as you tackle assignments or sit in on Zoom classes.

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The key to committing to fitness is finding something that you like to do. Whether it’s yoga or something more intense like high intensity interval training (otherwise known as HIIT), you won’t commit to it if you don’t like it. Switching up your routine can make your days exciting when they all start to blend together during the week. We all have to start somewhere —don’t be too hard on yourself if you can’t hold that 90-second plank or can barely do a sit-up. One of the most rewarding feelings is noticing how much stronger you are over-time. 

If you are wondering where to begin, then look no further. There are plenty of resources still available on and off campus to get your body moving.

Have no fear, the Student Recreation Center is still here for anyone living on or near campus this semester. The Rec Center has implemented some new policies for the semester, including requiring reservations for facility usage, requiring masks, and ensuring all machines are six feet apart. You can reserve your spot in group fitness classes if you workout best with others or you can make the trip on your own. Their Instagram pages @wcupacampusrec and @wcugroupfitness are up to date with schedules, sign-up links, and more.

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There are more online resources now than ever for working out in the comfort of your own home if you aren’t ready to hit the gym just yet. Youtube has a variety of free workouts to find your ideal form of exercise and many local fitness instructors are actively offering student discounts for Zoom sessions and recordings. If you don’t have the equipment on hand and supplies are still out of stock in stores, there are numerous body weight workouts to get you started. 

Exercising can add variety to your schedule and change the pace of your day. It’s a moment where you get to focus on yourself and feel the strength that you are capable of. Don’t let Zoom fatigue slow you down and leave you feeling restless. Add some movement into your day and the day will move a lot faster.

Aimee Padley

West Chester '21

Aimee Padley is a senior at West Chester University studying Media & Culture with minors in journalism and Spanish. When she's not writing, she can be found trying to cook or spending time with family. Lover of travel, reality TV shows, and her planner. Post-grad, she hopes to find a job in public relations or journalism.
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