Tag Archives: Health & Wellbeing

Quick tips to boost your mental focus and lose the brain fog

Move Better. Feel Better. Think Better.    

If there’s one thing that will help you sharpen your focus and get you back on the study train, it’s getting a little bit of movement into your day. 

Gamechanger

You know how you feel a little fuzzy in the brain some days, and can’t think straight?  The common response is to reach for a(nother) coffee or energy drink and maybe something a little sweet or savoury. In fact, you could do better for yourself by reaching for water and a little exercise snack.

Short-term response 

The brain is a wonderful thing. A 10min, one-time burst of activity can boost your brain power, at least temporarily. Other studies have shown similar benefits for 20min bouts. So, even if you feel you can’t commit to a long-term programme, or a longer excursion to the gym/park/pool, there’s no reason you can’t reap the benefits of exercise throughout your day.  Utilise those 10min study breaks with a little brisk activity!  It could also be part of your exam day strategy!  
How does the water help?  Our bodies and brain need to be optimally hydrated to optimally function. Front load your day with a big glass of water with breakfast, then keep the water bottle handy and sip, sip, sip away the day. Bonus – you may even help clear up your skin, improve digestion and promote healthy muscles & recovery. Don’t forget to take your water with you to your exam!

What do I have to do to get these benefits?

Anything that gets you a little huffy and puffy, to release the happy brain chemicals. But don’t overdo it, or you might feel too tired! 

If you need some inspiration, we’ve got you covered. Head to the Rec&Sport app (it’s free to download), make sure you have joined the RecCentre (it’s levy funded, but you do need to register), and then within 24hours you can access a library of on-demand workouts. You can watch our handy 3min ‘how to’ guide on Youtube, or just figure it out in-app. The classes from 10 mins – 45mins, covering kickboxing, yoga, pilates, barre and HIIT workouts. These classes will be free to all students throughout your exams.  

If you can’t get the app, we also have our lockdown classes saved on our YouTube channel, saved in handy playlists, so you can go back and do some of these at your leisure.  

Good luck with your exams everybody. 
UC Rec&Sport 

UC Student Blogger | Tips for coping with stress during exams

It is this time of year again where exams are around the corner and you have all your essays due at once. Stress is something we all feel during this time. Learning healthy ways to cope with stress is vital for your success!

Some tips to help during this exam period:

  • You are not alone. Many people, including staff, are stressed during this period; talk to a friend or use the UC support services – we are here to help!
  • Plan your study sessions out, make a timetable of what you are studying and how long it will take. Planning things out will help you to see a clear picture of where you are at and where you need to go.
  • Don’t overload yourself; take sufficient breaks during and in between studies – this will help you to focus better. You could go for a walk, go to the gym, catch up with friend over coffee… This will definitely help your concentration and wellbeing
  • If unforeseen circumstances are affecting your study and you need more time to finish an essay or assignment, you can speak to your course coordinator to see if it’s possible to have an extension

What if I don’t pass my exams?

The anxiety of failing your exams can be tough to overcome, especially if it has happened before. However, remember that you have come a long way – university is not meant to be easy. Having doubts about failure will only create a self-fulfilling prophecy. Instead, be kind to yourself. and try talking things through with a friend.  If you have failed before, examine what happened and what you can do next time. The Academic Skills Centre is here to help; you can find free resources and workshop that will help you deal with stress and help you succeed in your studies.

Other resources:

The UC Health Centre offers  counselling for students, and can provide medical certificates if you’re applying for extensions or special considerations. You can book an appointment over the phone and this service is free for students who have a Community Services Card. 

Student Care can give advice on a variety of issues from family problems to uni work. 

For more wellbeing information, visit the Wellbeing Hub or browse through all of the support provided by UC and the UCSA.

Find out more about how to manage exams, how to deal with fear of failure,  and how to cope with anxiety and stress

Be active for wellbeing

Be active is one of the five ways to wellbeing (along with giving, learning, connecting and taking notice). But, exactly how much is enough, or too much? 

It’s information overload out there!

A quick look on Instragram or YouTube and you’ll find a vast number of people pushing fitness products, programmes and services. Do you need them? Probably not. Or maybe. It entirely depends on what motivates you, what you like to do, what you don’t like to do, and how much time you’ve got to focus on your physical health. But, why would you? 

Your health is your key to happiness and wellbeing 

If you’ve missed it, being physically active is a major contributor to your positive mental health, and thus your ability to cope with stressful times. Being a student definitely has stressful times, particularly as we approach exams or for our thesis writers out there, milestones and self-imposed deadlines. So, if you can find 30mins a day to move your body in a way that makes you happy, you’ll be doing yourself a world of good.   

Get inspired!

Fun fact – have you noticed when you stop studying and go for a little walk (or more intense exercise), you have great ideas all of a sudden? We’re not sure why, but a little boost of hormones and oxygen to the brain might have something to do with it! So, if you find yourself in a little rut, get up off your chair and head outside or up the stairwell and boost your brain activity. 

Need some more help?

If you’re ready to take the next step, and get some tailored advice, then step over to the UCRecCentre. We’ve got a team of Fitness Consultants ready to help. We can sit down, listen to your goals and dreams, identify how much time you have, what makes you tick, and then help you write an exercise plan that will work for you. It might be gym based, or you might prefer a home based or even using our on demand classes and Rec&Sport app. If that sounds like a bright idea to you, head over to our reception or call us on 369 2433 and make a booking. For UC Students, a SteerMe is usually $20, but until Wednesday 7th October, it’s just $10.   

If you’re more of a self-starter, head into our app and assign yourself a beginner workout from the programmes on offer. There are a range of beginner, intermediate and advanced programmes to choose from. If you want a little help to navigate the app, book in for a GymStart with us (it’s free) and we’ll show you how to use it.  

Good luck with your new exercise routine!