During the study in medical school, it is hard to find time for workout and be a fit med student due to often low energy and low physical fitness among medical students. It is the masterpiece of managing to have time for physical activity breaks if you are a student of medicine since your priorities are your lectures and your clinical duties. That means your schedule can be wildly unpredictable. Unfortunately, most gyms require at least a monthly commitment.
Medical school is no doubt very challenging and time-consuming. But it’s still possible to find a manageable lifestyle while still succeeding to master the lecture needed to become a competent physician. All you have to do is follow these steps in order to be a fit med student.
1. Plan Your Workouts Like A Pro Fit Med Student
It requires plenty of discipline to stay fit during years of medical school. Most of the students are completely unprepared for how much extra discipline it would take during the years. At the beginning, you’re studying a lot, but your time is really your own. It is somewhat easy to schedule a workout in a day. But as the time goes, your schedule varies widely from day to day, not to mention from the rotation to rotation. You go to the hospital earlier and return home so late that you are often too exhausted to go to the gym. Besides, most of the food you are eating during the day is low with nutritive ingredients. You mostly don’t have the time to cook too.
So, you need to be creative to figure out a way to continue the wellness-centered lifestyle if you’ve even had one before going to medical school.
Planning your workouts for the week can be a fun and motivational way to give yourself an extra time of attention.
If you love working out, but you are on a very busy rotation and don’t have time to work out every day, or you have an early morning obligation, then try to do your workout before bedtime. It is helpful to work out when you go home. Then you don’t have any more obligations and you can do your exercise in a relaxed manner. If you prioritize sleep instead of exercise after daily obligations, do your workout early in the morning. Spend about half an hour of your time and you will be fit and vigorous all-day long.
2. Find Ways to Fit Little Bits Of Exercise Into Your Daily Routine
Medical students spend a lot of time indoors, but spending some time outdoors can strengthen your body and relieve your mind. That certainly will boost energy and lift your mood.
If you have a bike, biking cross river path or wood path can be beautiful and exciting experience and a rest for your mind. It can be restful even if you’re going to or from school or hospital, while it can be soon visible under your belt! Also, try to take the stairs rather than the elevator whenever possible, especially in the hospital and school.
If it is not complicated, you can change clothes and run or walk on the way to home. It is a simple way to get out of the classroom and enjoy some fresh air, while it saves your time.
If you have some of the workout equipment that you can use at home – a barbell with a squat rack, adjustable dumbbells, pull-up bar, etc, you can create your own little gym and organize “home gym hour” in the day, which is least fulfilled with obligations. It is cheaper than a gym membership in the long run and gives flexible organization with your weekly routine. You can find a lot of workout routines online and on YouTube for free and exercise according to their instructions. It also gives you the group exercise feel. Some of the students may manage only about 15 minutes if they wanted to be sustainable.
15-minute high-intensity interval training (HIIT) can be done with minimal equipment and can give you great result if you put it in your daily routine in the start of a day.
Find the partner for together exercise among the students whom you associate with, and all the things will be easier and more fun.
3. Yoga for Fit Med Student
Yoga invigorates the entire body and mind; although not many medical students tend to practice yoga during the years of medical studies. But those who do try yoga, find a lot of benefits to their body and mind.
When you are stressed out (and there is a lot of that in medical school and clinical practice) yoga is an effective way to refocus and clear your mind.
It is well known that after practicing yoga you can focus your mental resources, process information much quicker, more accurate and learning, holding and updating information is better.
If you think that you need extra time for yoga exercise, you are wrong. There are a few positions you can do even while you study (at home of course).
It is really easy to stay in this pose all the time while you are reading. Just lie on your belly with your book in front of you, and bring your forearms to the ground so that your elbows are directly under your shoulders. Inhale the shoulders up and down the back, and keep reading! You can stay in this pose as long as you feel comfortable, but it is recommended at least during 3-5 deep breaths.
Legs Up the Wall
The name itself tells you what to do to get to this pose. Lie on your back and just inhale your legs up above you and stay resting them on the wall in front of you. The best is you can stay here for hours and read in the pose.
It is not the pose for everybody because you need to have strong back muscles to stay in this pose. Otherwise, you may feel an uncomfortable tightening in the back. So, if you are used to sitting properly, come to a comfortable seat first. Gently take hold of one foot, and tuck it up into the opposite hip crease. Do the same with the opposite foot. Straighten your back and there you are! If you feel any pain or stress in your knees or back, choose another pose.
This is a kind of modified Child’s Pose. Gently bring your knees down the ground, and sit your hips back over your ankles. Get a good stretch in your arms, before bending the elbows and bringing your hands under your chin.
Begin with the Tabletop Pose, and slowly walk your legs out from under your hips as far as you can go without straining. Your feet should be flexed with the inside edges of the feet on the floor. Gently come down to your forearms. Stay in the pose 5 breaths, then change the pose.
You can also get a class of yoga for the first time, and after a certain time, you may practice that alone at your room.
4. Take Stretching Breaks
Some students study a few hours at once. They may take 10-minutes workout breaks 3-4 time during a study session. You can find out about this on YouTube searching for “Instant Recess.”
This is an exercise based on stretchings, such as neck rolls and shoulder rolls, leading into movements that involve raising your hands and dancing. It will provoke better blood flowing through your body and brain, while it’s easy to do for everybody. You don’t need any equipment, as well as special clothes.
5. Eat Healthily to Be Fit Med Student
We all know how much it is important to eat fresh and healthy food to be fit, healthy and ready for daily challenges. But how to achieve all of that obligation at school and hospital while having healthy meals at the same time?
Things are getting simpler if you don’t mind eating the same thing every day. You can make a scrambled egg with veggies almost every day for breakfast, or meat with some salad for dinner. Carbs, like pasta, is recommended for lunch. Make simple quick recipes, which you can make in the morning and bring for later. Don’t forget to drink a lot of water between meals.
Bring extra snacks at times if you feel hungry, but don’t take sweeties. Instead of that, take a fresh or dried fruit or nuts.
If you often buy out your lunch, use free days for cooking at home and you can be done in 2-3 hours if you do meal prep in one day. 2-3 hours of cooking for the whole week? I’m good with that.