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  • Writer's picturejordenpearce

Healthy looking is not equal to healthy!

I have always been considered to be 'healthy' because I have been a gym goer for about 12 years and over this time have built muscle mass and stayed relatively lean. Here's a little reminder of how looks can be decieving.




A day in the life of teaching… for me!


4am: Wake up, have a snack and pre-workout, pack my food for the day [breakfast, morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea], pack clothes for the day.

5am: Leave for gym.

5.30am – 6.30am: Gym.

6.45am – Arrive at work and have breakfast [living out of town means I am not wasting fuel going home and then back into town].

7am – Before school duties: Begin setting up for the day, printing, photocopying, responding to emails, updating data, marking, etc.

8.25am – 3.10pm – Teaching day.

3.10pm – 4pm/4.30pm/5pm/5.30pm – After school duties: printing, photocopying, responding to emails, updating data, marking, etc.

6pm – Arrive home, unpack bags, cook dinner.

7pm – Eat dinner, work on unfinished tasks from school.

7.45pm – 8pm – Bed time.

REPEAT!


I was getting to work so early and because I was there I would just start working. It’s not like I had nothing to do so I would try and knock out some to-do tasks while I was there. As for 'knock off', the time you leave school really depends when you’re going to stop yourself, because most days you won’t get everything you need to get done, done. Most days when I would force myself to leave before 5pm I would need to take things home. I needed to get out of the space I had been in since 7am but also needed to get these tasks done. This took a toll on my relationships as I was miserable having to do them at home, and would be frustrated if my partner distracted me from the work I needed to do.


Come the weekend, some days I would be taking home a milk crate sized basket of marking (who says Early Childhood is finger painting and play dough?!) I would often miss fishing trips, family dinners, social gatherings and ‘down time’ because I had so much to do.


Family and friends would often laugh at my bed time; however, like anyone who is not in the profession themselves, it may be difficult to comprehend how big one working day is and how draining it can be. On top of that, one thing I have always been good at is prioritising exercise in the morning. It keeps me sane and it really is my happy place – so going to bed at 7.45am to get up early enough to squeeze in a workout was a non-negotiable. It is no wonder that teachers struggle to find time to fit ‘me time’ in their schedule. Particularly those with their own children at home, where it may not always be possible to bring them along to a 5.30am gym session.


Whilst I was finding time to squeeze a workout in, I was also adopting some very unhealthy habits to ‘cope’ with the stress and exhaustion that came with my workload. With the help of some close friends, they were able to highlight to me that I was consuming a rediculous amount of caffeine in my FOUR SCOOPS of preworkout some days (this was a huge realisation for me). I often felt like I needed to consume this much to get me through the day because I was so tired. On top of that, some days during the week I felt like I NEEDED alcohol to just to relax when I got home from work. Just one or two to take the edge off… but feeling like this is a need is something I don’t want to experience. Outside of this, deep sleep was not a thing. I could not switch off and would often wake up at 2am to write notes on my phone about what I needed to do in the morning for work. Sometimes I couldn’t get back to sleep or would find myself waking up again at 3am, 4am, etc - almost every hour on the hour.  


Deep down, I have known I have not been the picture of health and have quite literally been avoiding doctor appointments in fear of what I might find out. THIS is why I am here. A very unhealthy picture painted for you, yet unhealthy habits such as these are so common in the industry and many other industries for that matter. I have come to the realisation I need to get to the root of the problem and out of this unhealthy cycle. I have now removed myself from a full time teaching load to focus on my own wellbeing, but I recognise the need to help others along the way and I hope they can do this whilst remaining in the career they love.

 

Yes, there are plenty of 'highs' but there are also plenty of 'lows' - all coming back to the expectations placed on teachers. Keep up the amazing work and embrace every 'fun' moment you can!



Much love,


Jords x

 

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