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Professional Development: Teacher Fitness Tips

Janelle Cox

You may be wondering how teacher fitness fits in with professional development. Professional development for teachers isn’t just about learning how to be a better teacher, it’s also learning about how to take of yourself so you can be a better teacher. In order to get through lecturing your students while being on your feet all day, you need energy. In order to have an adequate amount of energy, you also need to be healthy. Considering you’re around germs all day long, you need to keep healthy and exercise so you won’t get sick and will have enough energy to do your job. Here are a few of the top ways that you can stay and healthy fit this school year.

Professional Development: Make Sure You’re Getting Enough Sleep

The first teacher fitness tip isn’t about fitness at all. In fact, it’s about sleep. Experts suggest that you get about 7-9 hours of sleep a night. If you’re not getting the recommended hours of sleep a night, then it’ll be almost impossible to function at your best. To ensure that you’re running at your optimal best, then you need at least seven hours of sleep a night. If you notice that you’re not getting much sleep at night, then try going to bed an hour earlier. You should also make sure that you’re not taking your smartphone to bed with you. Research has shown that technology disrupts your sleep cycle and doesn’t allow your brain to wind down to sleep. To ensure that you get a restful night’s sleep each night, then put away your electronics.

Exercise Your Brain

The second fitness tip is to exercise your brain. Your brain is a powerful tool, and just like your body needs exercise, so does your brain. Mindful meditation has been at the forefront in the news for its many benefits for your brain. Experts have found that being mindful and meditating daily can help you tremendously. It not only helps to reduce stress and anxiety, but it also helps you focus as well as boost your working memory. You may have heard of apps such as Headspace and Simple Habit that suggest they can help calm your mind and nerves. Mindfulness (learning to be in the present moment) and meditation (breathing deeply) are great ways to start and end your day, or to use when you have a break during the school hours.

Create a Healthy Routine

In order to ward off those pesky germs that are lurking in your classroom, you need to start you day off in a healthy way. Create a daily routine, such as drinking water with lemon or celery juice before your morning coffee. These two liquids are known to wake your body up and help flush out the toxins. Then try and get in a quick walk or workout. This will help to jumpstart your day and get your body up and moving. When you start the day off on the right foot, you’ll have more energy throughout the day.

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Eat Healthy

Oftentimes, busy teachers are known to run out of the door and skip breakfast. However, doctors continually say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Take the time to eat breakfast as well as healthy foods throughout your day, this will keep your energy up. Try doing a meal prep when you premake healthy foods for the week. By meal prepping your breakfast, you can just pretty much grab and go. You can also meal prep your lunches, snacks, and dinners too. This way when you get home from work, all you have to heat up your food and you already know that you’re eating healthy.

Sneak in Exercise When You Can

The great thing about being a teacher is that you more than likely have your own classroom where you can shut your door and get your workout in. If you have any free time throughout your day, all you need is 5-10 minutes to stream a quick low-impact workout from your smartphone. You could also just use this time to walk around your school and chat with your colleagues about lesson plans. Walking is an easy way to keep your heart healthy and is known to benefit your mind and body as well. It’s also a great way to get to your daily required steps in (which is a recommended 10,000, according to the American Heart Association). You can even sneak in a seated exercise routine right from you desk while your students are working at their seats.

Self-care is just as important as taking the time to care about each and every one of your students. It’s important that you follow these teacher fitness tips, and you’ll not only physically feel better, but you’ll mentally feel better as well.  

Do you have any professional development teacher fitness tips that you’d like to share? Please share what works for you in the comment section below, we would love to hear your ideas on this topic.


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 Masters of Science in Education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is a contributing writer to TeachHUB.com, TeachHUB Magazine, and Hey Teach. She was also the Elementary Education Expert for About.com for five years. You can follow her on Twitter @empoweringed, on Facebook at Empowering K12 Educators, or contact her at Janellecox78@yahoo.com.