By Teachers, For Teachers
Trying to use classroom management to fit in a workout can be a challenge for anybody. But, when you are a teacher, sometimes the task seems nearly impossible. You don’t want to wake up an hour early because you are so exhausted from staying up late grading papers the day before, and you don’t want to leave your family at night because you haven’t seen them all day long. Whatever your reason may be, working out is a struggle. When it comes to improving your overall health and well-being, deciding upon a morning or night routine isn’t your only option. Here are a few classroom management tips as well as workout ideas to help you squeeze in your teacher workouts.
If finding time to work out is your biggest challenge, then you have to keep on reading. Physiologist Martin Gibala Ph.D and his colleagues have found that as little as four to seven minutes of your day, three times a week, does the same job as 30 minutes of exercise three or more times a week. The key is that you have to do a HIIT workout. This means High Intensity Interval Training, 20-40 seconds of intense physical activity, followed by a brief rest (about 10 seconds), repeated five or six times.
Four to seven minutes may seem like a short time to commit to a useful workout (many people still don’t believe it really works), but HIIT workouts are tough. And, if you are short on time, then they can be just the thing that can help you achieve your workout goal. Instead of spending money on a gym membership, try going on YouTube and try a HIIT workout. Lucy Wyndham-Read has hundreds of workout videos that can get you fit in as little as four minutes! If you search YouTube you will also find several hundred HIIT workouts that are just as beneficial as hers.
If you are a morning person, then all you have to do is set your alarm a few minutes early. If you find that you are exhausted from the day before and don’t want to wake up an hour early, then try setting it for 15 minutes earlier. Each day you can increase the time you wake up, as well as the amount of time that you work out.
Research shows that all you need is 21 days of doing something in order to make it stick. So you need to stick to your routine. If you want to fit in a quick jog before school, then make sure you do it at the same time every day.
Plan out when you will work out, where you will work out, and what you will do to work out. Even pick out your workout clothes the night before. This will help you be able to squeeze in a workout even better.
Who ever said that you couldn’t work out on the job? Buddy up with another teacher and take a walk around the school at lunchtime. When your students are at a special, take the first 15 minutes to play a YouTube workout video on your smartphone and complete a quick workout. If you don’t want to get all sweaty then try an easy yoga sequence.
If your biggest concern is that you don’t want miss out on seeing your children after school, then exercise with them. Make it a family tradition that the whole family takes a hike, a walk around the block, or plays basketball. You can even play Wii Fit, where the whole family plays video games while getting fit. It even keeps track of the calories that you burn while you play.
If want to be sure that you can get a workout in each day, then you need to have all of your work prepped and ready to go at school before you leave. Purchase a five-drawer organizer where you can label each drawer the day of the week so you can easily place all classroom materials in it for the following day. This will save you a ton of time the next morning.
Don’t get discouraged if you can’t make it happen five days a week. There will be times that you will have to miss your workout. Remember that every little but counts, and each day is a brand new day. Do what works best for you and only you.
How do you fit your teacher workout in? Feel free to leave your workout tips in the comment section below. We would love to hear what works for you.
Janelle Cox is an education writer who uses her experience and knowledge to provide creative and original writing in the field of education. Janelle holds a Master's of Science in Education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is also the Elementary Education Expert for About.com, as well as a contributing writer to TeachHUB.com and TeachHUB Magazine. You can follow her at Twitter @Empoweringk6ed, or on Facebook at Empowering K6 Educators.