News & Events
Who We Are
A new, insightful initiative, Who We Are, provides an inside look into the personal lives of the MIT Recreational Sports staff. Each month, a member of the team will provide an insightful passage about their personal goals, accomplishments, and even setbacks. Make sure to check back frequently for updates!
December: Ben McElhiney, Director, Aquatics
Trying to fit it in
In a recent conversation with a colleague located in a different state, I was questioned about the speed in which I talked. He said that I was talking so fast he was having trouble keeping up. This made me stop and think is it me or him? Reflecting on this question with my friends, it occurred to me that we in the North East unlike other parts of the country are always on the go, constantly pressured to work a high level of proficiency. Like many people in the North East I have my day planned down to the ½ hour sometimes months in advance. In my case, I actually have to enter into my schedule when to do simple tasks like, when to eat or when to leave to pick up my son. The biggest challenge with the lifestyle which includes work, the two plus hour commute, extracurricular obligations and commitment to carving out family time is, when do I schedule “Ben Time”?
Being a Recreational Professional, I often read articles about leading a healthy lifestyle. I find that most of the articles include a line like “everyone should be able to find 30 – 45 minutes in their day for exercise and get also 7 - 8 hours of sleep per night”. I often find these articles funny because I constantly look for time in my schedule to fit in all of my obligations plus exercise and get adequate sleep (sleep is usually not a problem). I find what works best for me is to try to structure daily tasks around exercise. In essence, I multi task my exercise. By trading daily tasks with healthier choices, I can fit exercise into my life. Examples like walking to the grocery store rather than driving, going for excursions in local state parks with my family rather than allowing family time to take place in front of the TV and listening to the Patriots on the radio allows me to work out or do yard work versus the sedentary option aforementioned. These small changes allow me to fit in exercise into my very busy lifestyle.
What about stress? I also continually read that exercise also reduces stress. Do these small changes work? I realized the overarching answer was yes; however, my normal exercise routine is sometimes just not enough. In addition to my multitasking, I now make an additional personal commitment that during high stress weeks, I commit to scheduling extra exercise times so I can alleviate the stress.
I find that my ability to multitask my exercise coupled with a personal commitment to reduce stress allows me to continue to lead a healthy lifestyle in a high paced environment.
Always trying to fit it in,
|Sept - Tim Mertz||Oct - Jason Lee
||Nov - Stephanie Kloos
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