Tired, out of breath and sweaty: That is me everyday after I walk all the way up the hill to my room. Having the courage to walk at Lehigh is not something to overlook.
Now, some will say it is cheating that I usually get to start my walk from Coppee Hall and not all the way at Neville or Rauch, but I would say we are all winners when we take the journey of hiking up the mountain.
When you go to college and live alone for the first time, habits become important.
Making your bed in the morning, folding your clothes, exercising — these are all things that can be a struggle for college kids.
It’s hard enough to deal with class, studying and work without the emotional support at home from your parents.
On top of that, taking care of yourself can seem like a rather impossible task. Walking, though, is one way we can take ownership of each day. We do not need to rely on the sporadic and maddening Packer Express.
We do not need to rely on a friend taking pity for us on the side of the road in his or her car. Walking is as important a time as any during the day. It is a time to be with your thoughts and truly be with yourself.
A time to listen to music and mentally prepare yourself to conquer the day.
As a journalist, sometimes the fate of my day is entirely in someone else’s hands. Whether you’re chasing down a story or getting shut down for interviews, it can feel like your job is dependent on someone else.
Walking to class, though, is an independent activity of which you can challenge yourself. It isn’t the most strenuous of exercises, but the feeling of accomplishment you gain can improve your day exponentially.
Walking to class has completely altered my Lehigh experience. It has allowed me to appreciate the present while focusing on moving forward. At a time in my life where everything seems to be moving too fast, it has grounded me and slowed me down. It has given me time to decompress and relax.
In the morning, seeing a deer run by wakes me up more than any caffeinated drink ever could.
Whether it’s in the morning and you’re walking down the hill to get to class, or in the afternoon, when you need to go do homework back up top, there is no better transition from activity to activity than walking.
So, I implore you to try it. It may increase the number of showers you need per day or the amount of deodorant you buy, but it will also do wonders for your mental health by carving out time for you to be with you.
Peter Gardner is an associate sports editor for The Brown and White. He can be reached at [email protected]