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How to add physical activity to your New Year

A walk in the park can help beat stress!
A walk in the park can help beat stress!

In the previous article on How to build your resilience to teacher stress, we looked at what stress was and the chemicals released into our system through our fight or flight response.  One of the best ways to handle this in a healthy manner is through physical activity.  We need to burn off those chemicals that are there to help us be stronger and faster.

What are some ways that teachers can fit physical activity into their daily living?  Take a look around at your surroundings.  You need not look far.

1. Go for a walk.  If it is during the school day, bring your sneakers and even a quick walk around the building will get your heart beating.  If the weather's bad, don't be afraid to power-walk the halls.  Want to ramp it up?  How about a hike?  There are some amazing local trails such as The Blue Hills Reservation for mountain trails or The Cape Cod National Seashore for ocean views.

2.  Take a class.  Check out the YMCA of Greater Boston for a list of classes near you.  Who said exercise couldn't be fun?  The YMCA offers a variety of programs and classes ranging from adult dodge ball leagues to pilates, dance, and spin classes.  There is something for everyone and membership rates are still reasonable compared to most gyms.

3.  Ride your bike.  Massachusetts boasts some of the most beautiful bike trails in the country.  A great online resource for trail info and bike resources is MassBike.  The provide regional lists of trails along with great information for experienced and novice cyclists.

4.  Just move it.  Make your own recipe, but when you feel stress, just get moving!