When Workout and Teaching Nightmares Combine to Form One Super Nightmare

I have the goal to get in shape this summer, but I think it may have led me to live one of my worst nightmares today. Like most people, I’m not an attractive person when I work out and will therefore workout with only close friends. Today, during my workout, the bridge program that I work at decided to tour the gym while I was on the treadmill. I’m fairly certain my students saw me although I was very plugged into my music and trying to convince myself to focus and not break concentration.

And then I thought, is it really a bad thing that they saw me? Sure, maybe I’m trying to convince myself that it isn’t so that I feel better, but they saw me working out. These incoming Freshman saw me make time for self-care. They saw someone who is in a mentor role, someone who works long days, someone who doesn’t have a long time, make time for health.

This is something that I want to keep up. Although I tend to dress nice (er, nicer) on days I teach/work with students, I want to take better care of myself and my health instead of being their graduate TA who looks entirely strung out by the third week in the semester. I need to be a mentor in more than just school work. I want to show that it is important to take care of yourself. I think I focus on the school and good student aspects too much. I need to be both.

On top of that, I need to get in shape for my own personal benefit as well. It’s something that is really easy to let go of. I used to work out every day, but life and grad school and such prevented me from thinking that I could keep that up. So, now, I’m back at it.



One thought on “When Workout and Teaching Nightmares Combine to Form One Super Nightmare

  1. I have some friends who fear seeing their students in bars around town, but I am much more afraid of seeing my students at the gym, for exactly the reasons you lay out. Most of my anxiety stems from me looking pretty gross while I’m working out.

    That being said, when I was an undergraduate at a small, liberal arts college, I would often see our college president at the fitness center, and occasionally we would be working out on ellipticals next to each other. Should he have been taking care of important college business instead of exercising? Maybe. Was there less pressure on him – an older gentleman – to look put together while working out than there is for a young female instructor? Probably. But I look back at those memories fondly; I thought it was kind of cool that he was just like the rest of us. Maybe your students will think the same.

    Liked by 1 person

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