How fitness impacts learning: exercise to boost your GPA
The connection between body and mind goes both ways. As anxiety, depression, and stress wreak havoc on your physical well-being, a healthy body affects your psychological state and cognitive abilities. In this post, we look closely at why fitness is important to you as a student and how to build healthy habits that will work wonders for your body, mind, and GPA.
What’s the relationship between exercise and learning?
Research suggests physical activity affects our brain in myriad positive ways, so we’ll focus on merely a few beneficial consequences you’ll be able to notice immediately:
- Increased blood flow to the brain promotes alertness level and attention. As your heart rate increases, every organ enjoys better blood flow, promoting cell growth. When that happens in the hippocampus, your concentration increases, making it easier to focus on studies instead of social media.
- Exercise prepares brain cells for binding, improving information retention. Neurochemical changes caused by physical activity get your brain ready to consume and retain information, which is essential for revision and test prep, especially if you combine it with an essay order to free up more time for study sessions.
- The development of new nerve cells from stem cells improves reasoning and cognitive abilities. Regular exercise before studies can improve reading ability, test scores, and overall academic performance.
So while workouts don’t make you smarter, they condition your brain to work better when you shift from physical to mental activity. Besides, building exercise into your daily routine promotes self-control that should help you combat schoolwork procrastination.
Why is fitness important for mental health?
Every other college student experiences occasional psychological or mental issues, and one in four suffer severe conditions that require professional treatment but often remain unaddressed. Luckily, exercise can help you manage psychological health, too:
- Regular workouts reduce constant stress. As most college students go through regular high-stakes testing and deal with tight deadlines, the effects of continuous stress add up quickly, and exercise can help mitigate its negative consequences.
- Exercise is proven to lower anxiety. Aerobic workouts are especially beneficial, as they teach the brain an alternative way to route muscle tension and other symptoms of anxiety and panic attacks, significantly alleviating their symptoms and reducing their frequency.
- Moderate physical activity alleviates depressive states. While exercise alone cannot combat depression, regular doses of endorphins and dopamine promote a general sense of well-being, which may combat depression symptoms.
- Structured exercise helps deal with ADHD. Ballet, martial arts, and other activities that engage the body and the brain can help people with ADHD develop focus and keep them engaged for longer periods, which can prove invaluable for academic performance.
With so many benefits to regular exercise and not a single downside, it’s difficult to come up with an excuse to put off a workout till next week or next month. But if you cannot make yourself exercise, check out our tips on incorporating it into your daily routine.
How to develop a fitness routine in college
The campus is full of temptations, so exercise is never a priority. But if you put your mind to it and use our advice, you’ll insert workouts into your routine smoothly and without friction. Try one or more of the tips below for the best results:
- Set a realistic weekly time allotment for exercise. You don’t need to spend two hours at a gym every day. Fifteen minutes per day or four 30-minute workouts should work wonders if you’re a beginner. And you can always get essay help online to free up some time for your physical and mental well-being.
- Choose a beginner-friendly fitness program. It can be a Youtube or Instagram workout challenge or a newbie class at your campus gym. Pick an option you’re comfortable with and are willing to stick to for at least a month.
- Get a fitness tracker, like LVL, to monitor your progress. LVL is the first fitness tracker that monitors your body’s hydration in real-time. LVL simultaneously senses your hydration, heart rate, and activity to help you optimize every workout. The LVL fitness tracker prompts you in real time, alerting you exactly how much fluid you need and what type of performance boost you can expect.
- Rethink your eating and drinking habits. Giving up burgers and beer for kale smoothies will quickly turn you off a healthy lifestyle, so start slow. Replace one daily junk food snack with a more nutritious option and go from there.
- Enhance your workout routine gradually. You can start with something as simple as a 15-minute walk or bike ride to class instead of driving or taking a bus. But as you adjust, introduce gradual changes to challenge your body in new ways.
If you’re an extrovert, you may benefit from sharing your new lifestyle choices on social media and building habits with others to support each other through the inevitable rough patches. And if you prefer to keep your routines private, consider journaling, as it will help you process the changes and track new habits as you introduce them. A journal will also help you analyze the successes and failures of your exercise regime and build an optimal routine for your lifestyle.
Hopefully, our explanation of why fitness is important to you as a student will convince you to take thirty minutes every other day to treat your body and mind to a round of pleasant exertion. Use our tips for developing a fitness routine, go slow, and you’ll start noticing positive changes within a month.