This week I passed a big milestone in my educational career – I went to my last first day of classes. Ever (probably. Unless a crazy urge to get a PhD sneaks up on me….). As such, I’m seeing this as my last opportunity to soak up all the information, research, experience and knowledge I can, and so I’ve jumped in cannonball style – here’s what I (and you) have to look forward to through May.
Techniques of Fitness Leadership- This is my only actual classroom endeavor this semester. And it’s at an undergraduate level. Go big or go home, right? I’ve been to one lecture so far and can already tell this class will be my favorite of my two years at UT. We’ll cover topics like dynamic warmups, optimal nutrient timing, functional training and many others. I knew this class was right up my alley when it said in our syllabus Please wear athletic clothing and shoes to class and labs. No jeans. Seriously?! Yes. We’ll also spend half of our time outside the lecture hall and in the gym doing hands on movement, critique and coaching. This class is so worth the year and a half wait to find.
Teaching Assistant Anatomy- Last semester was my first experience as a teaching assistant and I loved it. I’ve always enjoyed human anatomy and it complements my discipline nicely. Holding this position has helped me learn about the body more clearly since I have to be able to explain it to the kiddos. I teach a weekly lab and we’ll cover everything from muscles to bones to brain. I’ve realized I really enjoy teaching and am brainstorming ways to bring that with me into a career.
Train 4 the Game- I have been an intern here for two semesters and really enjoy their functional style. They are a gym without the typical rows of cardio and weight machines. It’s a big open space that encourages the use of body weight, gravity, ground reaction forces and alternate sources of load (dumbbells, kettlebells, sandbells, ViPRs and battle ropes) for mimicking daily movements like lunging, reaching, squatting etc. This semester I’ll have a chance for some more hands on coaching, as well as leading several cycling classes per week!
Dr. Spears- I was connected with Dr. Spears by my advisor. He is, to put it most simply, an orthopedic surgeon. Additionally he runs a physical therapy clinic and has another location in the works. I get to observe an ACL surgery next week and can’t wait to use that experience with the anatomy kids in my lab. I’m hoping to learn more about running injuries (anatomy, cause, prevention and rehab) through this connection.
Gilbert’s Gazelles- This running group was just named Austin’s best. I will be helping out with their running group a few times per week, trying to implement what I learn with Dr. Spears and in my Fitness Leadership course to benefit the group.
Austin Bucket List- Of course there has to be time for a little fun. What’s the point of staying in shape if you don’t make time to do what you love? I have no idea what’s coming after graduation….I do know I need to stay in the house through July to finish the lease but after that there’s no telling! There is definitely a chance that I stay in Austin, and definitely a chance that I leave. And in case I’m leaving, I want to make sure I spend some time doing those Austin things.
And somewhere in between all of that I’ll squeeze in my own fitness, some cooking, some happy hours and plenty of puppy time.