Jessica Griggs has spent the past eight weeks as the Red Runner at CSU in Dubbo, inspiring others and motivating herself to be #BetterInRed. Here she reflects on how the challenge has brought people together and why she wants the activities and connections to carry on for the rest of the year.
We’re now in Week 8, the final week of the #BetterInRed challenge, and it’s been great to see everyone getting involved. The challenge has been a great way to get the CSU community together to achieve a healthier lifestyle.
One of the struggles I’ve faced as a student is maintaining a healthy balance between studying, socialising and exercising. As a student, it’s easy to forget not only about your physical health, but also your mental health. We often become weighed down by impending assessment deadlines, weekly readings and the attendance of lectures and tutorials. I found that if I let myself become too focused on the studying side of university life, my mental health suffers and I begin to feel weighed down by everything that I have to achieve in such a short amount of time.
Exercise helps not only with improving the way I feel both physically and mentally, but also improves my ability to focus and maintain information I’ve learnt when it comes time to study. Being a Red Runner has opened doors for me, giving me the push I need to make time to exercise. It’s also allowed me to support others by providing them with opportunities to get involved and strengthen their own mental and physical health.
This strengthening of mental wellbeing as well as physical health is something that I’ve witnessed in other students who’ve been participating in the #BetterInRed challenge at Dubbo. Our weekly organised team sports are now something that we look forward to each week, not only for fitness, but also as a different way to socialise. There is a sense of encouragement and students supporting other students in a way that can only be achieved through playing sport and exercising together. It’s this type of support that allows us to keep going in achieving our fitness goals.
While the #BetterInRed challenge is coming to an end, it doesn’t mean our journey towards better health has to end. Meeting like-minded people that are interested in getting together to play sports has allowed us to organise spontaneous gatherings and fit in exercise where we can. This is something that I believe will continue well beyond the challenge!
At the end of the #BetterInRed challenge, I encourage everyone to reflect on the last eight weeks, what you’ve achieved from becoming more active and how regular exercise has made you feel. Use this as motivation to continue working towards better health beyond the challenge. The challenge is just the beginning of my journey and it can be for you too.
#BetterInRed is all about getting the most out of university life by looking after your health and wellbeing. It is an exercise challenge that will run for eight weeks from Monday 6 March.
So, lace up, get out and challenge yourself to complete 30 minutes of exercise three times per week. Share your exercise using #BetterInRed and you could win some great prizes!
Find out more at social.csu