Sunshine is the best medicine

Image of students outside
Joe Sison/Staff

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When everything was in person pre-COVID-19, my friends would find me studying or lounging on Memorial Glade every single day. I never missed a chance to go outside whenever the sun was peeking out. But ever since the start of the pandemic, I’ve stayed indoors almost every day, besides taking the occasional walk around the neighborhood. When it started to become sunny again a few weeks ago, I knew it was time to go outside at least once a day, and it’s the best decision I could’ve made. Here are some easy tips to help you find reasons to go outside at least once every day.

Eating

I’ve started to eat lunch outside on the regular. Whether I’m sitting in my backyard taking a break or sitting on the grass finishing a reading, bringing my lunch outside has made lunchtime my new favorite time of day. Even bringing a few snacks outside and having a small picnic has been fun, and it provides me with a nice small study break so I can take a breather during a long day of Zoom classes.

Studying

Print out your school readings, and instead of doing them on your bed or at your desk, do them under the sun. You can also bring your computer outside, and as long as you have Wi-Fi access or a mobile hotspot, you can attend Zoom meetings and classes with a sunny background and fresh air.

If you need to listen to a lecture that your professor recorded, take a walk and listen to it with your headphones. You’ll find listening to a lecture while also getting in your steps is a refreshing change from your desk.

Exercising

Whether you want to walk around the neighborhood with a roommate or family member or you’re more interested in going on longer hikes, completing at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day is an extremely healthy habit. What I’ve been doing lately is grabbing my bike — and helmet of course — and enjoying the warmth of the sun while I bike across trails close to my house. Another option is to bring your yoga mat outside!

Whether you’re pale or feeling blue, going outside might just be the best thing for you! There are so many benefits to soaking up some sunshine and countless published studies show that the sun boosts your mood, reduces stress, restores your vitamin D and so much more. Just make sure you’re staying COVID-19 safe by wearing a mask and social distancing, and don’t forget to wear sunscreen!

Contact Natalia Brusco at [email protected].