Spotlight On: Sarah Shaw
Name: Sarah Shaw
Major: Nutrition and Wellness
Role at UNH: Student
Year Started at UNH: 2017
What does being healthy look like to you?
To me, being healthy means viewing health as all-encompassing, including areas like intellectual, emotional, physical, and environmental health (to name a few). I try to check with each of these every day and see if there are things that I can do to improve these areas of wellness. Even though I may get a great workout in most days, if I am not paying attention to my emotional wellbeing I won’t feel like I am truly healthy. The key is listening to what your body really needs.
What have you been doing to take care of your mental health while in quarantine?
I have been texting and Facetiming with my closest friends often. I have also challenged myself to be more open about my mental health with others. If I am having a bad day emotionally, I try to talk it out with someone close. This almost always elevates my mood and significantly improves my day.
What has been your favorite tech-free hobby?
My favorite tech-free hobby has been going for walks at sunset with my mom and my dog. Because I spend most of my time throughout the year in Durham and away from home, it has been really nice to go on these walks and catch up on life with my mom.
What do you do to stay active?
I try to go on daily walks to get some fresh air and Vitamin D! I feel a sense of normalcy with these daily walks and I see a lot of my neighbors throughout the day too. I also have been doing a lot of different at-home exercises like yoga, pilates, HIIT, and even kickboxing. This helps me to relieve stress and keep my spirits high!
What has been your favorite food to make while in quarantine?
Lately I have been making omlets in the morning for breakfast! I love to try different variations and see how many different vegetables I can use. It's really good, but it definitely will never compare to the breakfast bar at Philly!
How do you find motivation to stay healthy and active while in quarantine?
On days that I'm feeling down, I find it really hard to do anything to improve my health. To put me in a better mood, I make a playlist of all of my favorite songs that make me want to dance and I listen to that throughout the day. This motivates me to exercise and get stuff done!
Have you seen or felt any improvements in your physical or mental well-being after making positive changes in your life?
I have felt significant improvements. By trying to get some form of exercise in every day and being more open with others about my mental health, life in quarantine and social distancing has been a lot easier than it was at first.
Do you have any positive words of encouragement for others to create a healthier lifestyle?
Do what is best for you! What works for me may not work for others. Try different methods to improve your physical health and focus on how they make you feel. Even though a behavior may be good for your health, if it doesn't improve your emotional health it may be better to try something new. Don't feel discouraged either - it takes time and an open mind to find what works for you. Finally, listen to your body and what it needs. Engaging in healthy behaviors should never be something you have to do, but rather something you want to do! Listen to your body and give yourself some credit.