posted on June 24, 2021
When coming to Pitt, I never thought about any other field except medicine. I spent most of my life fantasizing the idea of being a doctor because I convinced myself that was the only way I would be successful. However, I did not take the time out to learn what success meant to me. I could be successful at anything because I am a firm believer that what you put in is what you will get out of most situations. I just needed to figure out what I wanted to be successful in because clearly medicine was not it. *flashback to me crying in my large dunkin’ iced coffee in the middle of the library at 3am.
Once starting classes in the fall of my freshman year at Pitt, I quickly realized that my plan was not going to work out as anticipated. I wanted to choose a career that was going to lift me up rather than keep me in the ditch that I constantly found myself in. I was completely lost. I took classes that did not interest me, let my fitness deteriorate and my mental health took a toll. The perfect trifecta. That all changed once I took my first Intro to Exercise Science class. After entering that class, I was finally learning about something that piqued my interest and was able to prevent the diseases that I convinced myself I wanted to cure as a doctor. Wouldn’t it be a little less morbid if I dedicated my career to stopping them from happening in the first place rather than banking on these diseases to strike?
I had the opportunity to make connections and learn so much more about the field that I ever imagined. Having people around me who were willing to help me navigate my strengths and weaknesses was the key to knowing more about who I am and what I am capable of. I went into this major as someone who was far from who I am now. By far from who I am now I mean strides behind who I am now. In all honesty, I have only cried into my large dunkin’ iced coffee once this week so far. If that isn’t progress I don’t know what is. I was someone who was confident in nothing that she did, and believed that she would fail if she even tried. I came out of that major as a young woman who is confident that she can accomplish anything that she sets her mind to, with some hard work and elbow grease. I have so much to learn from those around me and I am so grateful for the opportunities that I have been extended to set me up to achieve my version of success. My time here at UF thus far has proven that to be true.
I declared as a Health and Human Development major with a concentration in Exercise Science and have never even had a doubt that this was the right move. I fell in love with the science behind movement and how our bodies respond to exercise. I loved figuring out the “why” behind what we do as humans. Learning that everything is connected and how we treat our bodies in reference to exercise and movement effects every other part of us has become my why.
The main takeaway from my time in learning Exercise Science is simple: Exercise is Medicine. I carry that ideal with me every single day because living an active lifestyle can help solve many other health related issues whether that is mental, physical or otherwise. I am not saying that you need to train like an elite athlete to be healthy. That most certainly is not the case if any of you have seen me in the gym. I am simply stating that you must treat your bodies with the respect that they deserve. It is the only body you get and if you take care of it, it will then take care of you. Make exercise your medicine because it sure as hell has become mine as I have progressed from who I was into who I am and who I wish to be.