Stay Healthy All School Year: Simple Tips For Every Teacher

Stay Healthy All School Year: Simple Tips For Every Teacher

Summer is almost over and school is right around the corner. I bet you did some great things this summer like exercised more, ate all the veggies, and slept at least 8 hours every night. Okay, maybe you didn’t get that six pack this summer and go vegan or even sleep 8 hours every night, but I bet you took more time to care for yourself than you normally do during the school year. And let’s face it, when it comes to the school year, teachers struggle to take care of themselves. Instead of letting all self-care go for the next 9-10 months and waiting patiently for summer to start those healthy habits again, try something new this year.

Self-care all year is extremely important, especially when things get stressful. Teachers are givers and caretakers, so making a mindful effort to stay healthy can be hard when putting everyone else first. I’ve got some easy tips that’ll help you find ways for better health all year long. Trust me, it’s worth spending time on yourself!

Stay Health All School Year Tips:

Find an exercise you enjoy and put it on your calendar. You’ve probably heard this before, but it works. Use ClassPass to try different workouts if you don’t know what you like then sign up for a class you can’t miss. If you enjoy your workout then you’ll want to go. Plus, making plans and putting them on your calendar means you’re more likely to follow through.

– Eat more veggies and less sugar. I know this isn’t a groundbreaking tip, but it’s a simple and important habit. More veggies = more nuturients = better health. It’s simple math.

– Plan your meals but plan things you like! The days I brought healthy lunch that I didn’t really like I often had an unhealthy snack (or two) later. Instead of only thinking about healthy, think about what you like to eat and what will keep you satisifed. There are plenty of tasty healthy dishes out there so jump on Pinterest and find some you like. Also, packing healthy snacks to help you get through a long day cuts down your chances of eating those cookies in the staff lounge.

– Go on a walk alone during your prep and focus on positive thoughts. This is great for you body and mind. If you are having a rough day or have a rough class after your prep, this will give you time for yourself and to feel more relaxed before returning to teaching. It benefits you and your students.

– Give yourself a stop work time and declare a “no work night” once a week. Working from sunrise to sunset is a great way to burnout, so decide on a time that you’ll stop working each night and stick to it. Do something that has nothing to do with teaching on your “no work night.” Doing this surprisingly helped me go to bed at a decent time. When I worked until 9pm at night, I needed some time to decompress, so I stayed up later. When I stopped working earlier, I had more time to myself to decompress or relax before bed so I didn’t have to stay up as late. This meant I was better rested in the morning. Win!

– Recognize what days you have the least energy and respect your body with rest. For me it’s Wednesday. Every time I try to run on Wednesdays, I struggle to run a mile and I feel crappy about it afterward. Now I don’t run on Wednesdays and take a rest day instead. My Thursday run is much better and I feel awesome after I finish.

– Incorporate mediation, journal writing, and/or gratitude into your classroom and participate with your students. This way everyone gets the benefits of these activities and you don’t have to find the extra time before or after school. It may take a few class periods for you to be able to sit down and fully participate with your students, but once they get the hang of it, you will enjoy having this time built into your class time.

Do you have other great healthy tips for your fellow teachers? Share them in the comment section!

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