Staying healthy and fit at home


Muthu Panchanatham

Marcus Anderson (12) performs a box jump at a workout hosted on Davis Field during summer break. Box jumps are an effective exercise for strengthening the lower body, increasing one’s vertical jump. and improving athletic explosiveness overall.

by Saurav Tewari and Kushal Shah

Having been quarantined at home during this pandemic for months on end at this point, it’s fair to say that staying both mentally and physically fit during our time at home has been challenging, to say the least. 

Yet, despite these unfortunate circumstances, it’s still important to prioritize mental and physical health, while also managing time effectively in order to keep up with school work and extracurriculars.

This past summer, although workouts were not required for Harker student-athletes, practices and workouts were still open to any students wanting to stay in shape or improve their athletic performance. Of course, Harker’s summer sessions were in accordance with local ordinances –– workouts took place on Davis field, all coaches and participants wore masks, and all members were screened for temperature.

Many student athletes, whether they attended in-person workouts or not, have been staying fit and preparing for the start of their modified seasons, with the first seasonal stretch projected to start in December and the second seasonal round of sports in March. 

But fear no longer — by showing you what some student-athletes have been doing over quarantine, we are here to bring you some tips and suggestions on how to remain healthy and positive during this difficult time.

Establish a routine

Athletes have emphasized the importance of keeping your blood flowing and staying active in any way you can.

Varsity cross country runner Aidan Lincke (11) has accomplished this through several mile bike rides and runs at local parks. 

“Most mornings I woke up early to exercise and avoid the majority of people that are outside during the rest of the day. I usually biked on paved trails, especially hilly ones, and went on jogs on nearby streets,” Aidan said.

Set goals for yourself

Exercises should be structured towards reaching new heights. Setting goals can prepare you for success, but you shouldn’t just set long-term goals; create smaller ones too so you feel good about your progress at each milestone.

“One of my goals was to get between 20-25 miles each week, mainly long runs. I live near many hiking trails so I like to run on dirt trails instead of the concrete to prevent injuries like shin splints,” varsity soccer athlete Kara Kister (10) said. 

Maintain a healthy diet

Workouts are only half of the equation: maintaining a satisfying, yet healthy diet goes a long way in making us healthier and happier in the long term.

“Everyone has a unique relationship with their body and the food they eat, and everyone will be healthy in their own way. Don’t listen to someone else for the sake of it, find what works for you” suggested football team captain Rohan Varma (12).

Do what you enjoy

Regardless of the foods you decide to eat or what workouts you choose, it’s important to foster a good relationship with exercise and dieting rather than forcing yourself to do them. 

“If you love to take your dog outside, do it more often! If you love playing basketball by yourself in a park, go for it. Also, try something outside your comfort zone. Keep your mind open — you never know what you will end up enjoying. Don’t feel ashamed when you eat something unhealthy. Don’t promise to starve yourself for a week to compromise for it. Treat yourself once in a while. Have rest days. Have cheat days. Life isn’t 100% rigid and perfect all the time, and you don’t have to be either,” advised Rohan.