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Staying Healthy While Homebound

Grant Stewart
It has been more than four weeks since students and staff were at Mullen.  I hope everyone is staying healthy, staying on top of their work and finding the positive in our current situation.  I wanted to reach out to all our students and recommend ways we can all stay healthy during our homebound time. In conjunction with the Wellness/Physical Education Department, here are some things EVERYONE can be doing during this time to remain healthy.
  1. Set a schedule
Setting a schedule can be one of the most difficult things to abide by during multiple weeks of unstructured time.  The benefits of setting a schedule allow for less stress of school deadlines and more focus on tasks at hand. A couple of things to consider for your schedule would be sleep, exercise, prayer/meditation/relaxation, school work and study time.  Scheduling these big blocks of time during the day will help you stay on track and give you more free time during the day. Having discipline during this time and sticking to your schedule will give you freedom when free time is scheduled.

  1. Sleep
The benefits of sleep cannot be expressed enough, especially during times of stress.  Sleep helps with our cognition, mood, food cravings, hormone levels, and can help with depression and anxiety.  Teenagers (15-18 years old) should be getting 8-10 hours of sleep every night. A useful tip is determine a time in the morning you can set your alarm for which you know you will wake up.  Turn off screens 90 minutes prior to going to bed, knowing you are wanting to sleep 8-10 hours.  

  1. Drink Water
Drinking water should happen everyday at the rate of drinking half your bodyweight in ounces (230 lb. individual should drink 115 oz.).  Water helps us feel more full, increases performance, regulates body temperature and fights fatigue.  

  1. Well Rounded Diet
Getting all required nutrients at a time when grocery shelves are empty can be difficult.  What we recommend to our students is eating lean proteins, complex carbohydrates, Omega 3 fats and a variety of fruits and vegetables at every meal.  Getting all four components from a variety of sources ensures getting all nutrients to help fight off sickness and promote health.

  1. Go Outside
Vitamin D is necessary for building bone, plays a role in cognitive health, and can be a defense for diseases and certain cancers.  Increasing levels of vitamin D reduce inflammation, pain, and myopathy while increasing muscle protein synthesis, ATP concentration, strength, jump height, jump velocity, jump power, exercise capacity, and physical performance (Shuler, 2012).  Lack of Vitamin D for athletes can be related to repeated illnesses, stress fractures, and musculoskeletal pain.  

  1. Move your body
Exercise has an enormous positive impact on our health, especially at a time like this.  Exercise will improve our mood, energy levels and overall health. The Wellness/PE Department is encouraging all students to get at least 30 minutes of exercise in a week.  Mullen athletes should be continuing their training regimen from the off-season and include strength training and sprinting exercises. Regardless if students have access to weight equipment, they can still move everyday and use their body weight or heavy household objects for external resistance.  Please reach out to Coach Stewart for any help, ideas, tips, etc.   

Shuler, Franklin D et al. “Sports health benefits of vitamin d.” Sports health vol. 4,6 (2012): 496-501. doi:10.1177/1941738112461621