In today’s society, people are constantly looking for shortcuts and ways to get an edge over others. Consider the use of adderall that is growing on college campuses all over the nation: finding ways to increase learning in a shorter period amount of time has become analogous to steroid use in gyms and sports all over the nation. However, there is a better way to study well.
A new study has come out showing a correlation between fitness and academic success. So, success in the classroom and success in the weight room do not need to stem from drugs. This study published in the American College of Sports Medicine shows that those who worked out vigorously at least 3 times a week, on average, had a 0.4 higher GPA than those individuals who did not. The amount of time spent studying per week was adjusted as well as socioeconomic background and gender. This suggests that exercise can help boost academic performance.
But what about the other way around: can one see better results in the gym by spending more time studying? I see it as a bit of a stretch, but some studies suggest that willpower is in fact like a muscle. There is a reason why after a midterm or final, you need to do something fun to unwind and cannot go back to studying. Your willpower is tired and used up—sort of like a muscle. Some scientists say that using your willpower can strengthen it. For example, when you push through a book when you’re tired or study when you want to watch a movie, you are strengthening it. This leads to stronger willpower, and you will see the difference next time you are at the gym trying to finish a long workout.
For me, it boils down to one thing—how I feel all together as a whole. I work out because it clears stress from my mind, and it makes me feel good about my body. I study because it gives me confidence and also relieves the stress from assignments I have. Together, these help me feel better about myself and allow me to put my 100% in whatever I do.
- Rajiv Narayan: Hitting the Gym vs. Hitting the Books: How Your Next Workout Will Improve Your Grades from Huffington Post College by TheHuffingtonPost.com, Inc. <http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rajiv-narayan/hitting-the-gym-vs-hittin_b_491452.html>
- Vigorous Exercise Linked with Better Grades from the New York Times Well by the New York Times Company <http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/06/03/vigorous-exercise-linked-with-better-grades/>
Article by Arya Minaie
Feature Image Source: Berkeley Rec Sports