Replacing Stress With Running Made A Huge Difference In My Life

Replacing Stress With Running Made A Huge Difference In My Life

Whoever told you not to run from your problems was wrong.


I like to pretend that I am the type of person who is easy going and stress-free when it comes to life, but there are some things that raise my stress, and that just can't be helped. School and the need to succeed has always been one of those stressors for me. Going into my first semester of college, I was so excited to have extra time between classes to get things done. I thought I was going to be so on-task—boy, was I so wrong.

Time management has never been one of my strong suits, and that, unfortunately, did not magically change when I began college this fall. During the midterm season, my level of stress reached an all-time high. I was struggling to balance my academics, social life, and other responsibilities. My morale was very low, and I struggled to do anything productive. All I wanted to do was lay in bed and watch Netflix. Nothing sounded better than a lazy day filled with "Grey's Anatomy" and some popcorn. Laying in bed was not going to reduce my stress so I decided to try doing something that would get my blood pumping, like running.

Like a lot of people, I was never a huge fan of running for fun. Growing up, I used to only run when it was required such as at practice or when I was conditioning for lacrosse. College changed all of that, as I found myself getting more stressed and looking for ways to relax, I stumbled upon the idea of running. Once I started running daily, everything turned around. It was as if with each mile I ran, the stress began to slip away. With the reduction of stress, it became easier to manage my time and to be more motivated when it came to studying.

Running daily was not an easy habit to start and it definitely was not easy to continue once the beautiful summer and fall weather turned into a cold, windy winter. The more I kept at it though, the better I felt. The overwhelming amount of schoolwork was still stressful but not to the same point it had been previously. I no longer felt suffocated by the looming essays, exams, and project deadlines. The less stress I felt the easier it was to get work done. Funny how that works—taking time away from studying actually makes it easier to focus on studying later. It feels like it should be the opposite because I am losing time I could be spending studying but instead I am just helping myself to create a more productive environment. That is what really matters, creating a productive environment in order to get things fully done without the overwhelming stress getting in the way.

Exercise in any form has often been credited as a stress reducer and even has been recommended as a positive way to promote a healthy life by the Mayo Clinic. As the heart rate and energy increase because of the endorphins and adrenaline being produced, stress and anxiety are lowered. Ten minutes that is all it takes for the number of endorphins needed to create a change to be fully produced, not an hour, just ten simple minutes. Ten minutes of a jog or ten minutes of a walk can create since an impact on daily happiness levels. The rush of endorphins creates a sense of happiness that seems to instantly relieve my stress.

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10 Bible Verses for Self Esteem

Sometimes you need to search for inner strength and find your own self worth.

We all get those days that we just don't feel good enough for anything. Everything is going wrong. For me, I go to the bible to read the words of God. His personal dialog for us is filled with encouragement, hope, and lessons we can learn from. Here are my top ten verses that are uplifting and impacting when at the lowest of lows:

1. Philippians 4:13:

I can do all things in Him who strengthens me.

2. Psalm 46:5

God is within her, she will not fall.

3. Proverbs 31:25

She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future.

4. Psalm 28:76

The Lord is my strength and my shield.

5. 1 Corinthians 25:10

By the grace of God, I am what I am.

6. Romans 5:8

I loved you at your darkest.

7. Psalm 62:5-6

Only God gives inward peace, and I depend on Him. God alone is the mighty rock that keeps me safe, and he is the fortress where I feel secure.

8. 2 Timothy 1:7

For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love, and self-discipline.

9. 1 Peter 2:9

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.

10. 2 Chronicles 20:15

The battle is not ours, but God's.

Cover Image Credit: chinadaily

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Even If You're A Broke College Student, Investing In A Gym Membership Is Worth The Money

It's an investment for your health.


When most people think about going to the gym, most would think that the gym is full of athletic pros. But the truth is that all gym goers all have different levels and skills when it comes to fitness. What I'm saying is its no issue as to who goes to the gym, and the athletic ability of the person should not make or break whether someone should workout or not. Working out and going to the gym is a wise investment, and will bring many more perks than you would actually think.

Going to the gym can be a form of self-care. College life is the perfect time to practice self-care. With exams, papers, jobs/internships, and trying to maintain a social life, we all have a ton of stress. With this stress, why not go to the gym to help relieve that stress? Whenever I go to the gym, I am stress-free, and it makes me think more clearly before I started working out. Even if you do not like working out, try yoga or light weights. Try to start off by doing small easier workouts so you can enjoy yourself, and start to develop a baseline for improvement.

Also, another reason why college students should go to the gym is that most of the gym fees are included in college tuition. I am referencing DePaul University students, here, the Ray Meyer Fitness Center is already part of the tuition fees, so why not get some of that money back? Go to the gym, and enjoy yourself! Let me tell you that graduate students do not have the same perks as undergraduate students, they have to pay for a membership. I mean, graduate students do get a discount, but they still have to pay. So what I am saying is enjoy those years as an undergraduate, because you would never realize what you have until it's gone.

In addition, one should go to the gym because it helps people save money. I know a gym membership costs money, but while you are on that membership, you can go to that gym as many times as you like and not get charged extra money. On the other hand, other activities such as museums, shopping, and going out to eat are other activities that increase more spending. Through obtaining a membership, you are able to cut down the costs of spending money through only paying a one-time or annual fee. So save up some money for that gym membership, get fit, and start to see some of your profits get back into your pocket.

All in all, the gym is a place where we can distress, and form new hobbies. It is a place to grow, and going to the gym makes us feel good. Again, nobody has to be an athletic machine to attend, and all levels of fitness are welcome. So grab a gym buddy, or spend some time with yourself, and workout.

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