Core Values Are Not Enough

Core Values Are Not Enough

Core Values Are Not Enough

Teacher Fitness Tips for Busy School Days

Exercising at your desk won’t be such a heavy lift with these tips.

Teacher fitness is an important goal, but finding time to exercise when you’re in the classroom all day can be tough. Squeezing it in before school means getting up even earlier than you do already, while trying to work out after school may add a couple of hours to your already packed day. Check the latest profit singularity ultra edition review.

There are ways for teachers to stay fit by infusing exercise into their school days. Maybe a few of these ideas will work for you!

1. Go Walk!

Walking is one of the easiest, most effective, and most accessible forms of exercise for teachers. Some teachers walk the halls before the kids arrive or after they leave. Slip on a pair of good sneakers with whatever you’re wearing and take a few laps around the building. Take the stairs if possible!


Many teachers wear a Fitbit or other activity tracker so they know how many steps they’ve taken or how many laps around the building equal a mile. I know teachers who walk outside during lunchtime when the weather cooperates. Some say that walking clears their heads and energizes them for classes after lunch.

2. Invite Colleagues to Exercise With You

Chances are that you’re not the only teacher in your school who wishes they had more time to exercise. Invite colleagues to join a workout club that regularly meets after school. Veteran health and nutrition teacher Nora Howley says the camaraderie and commitment of others provide positive reinforcement for everyone. There’s “safety in numbers,” she says, for teachers who may not feel comfortable exercising in an open school setting.

Further reading: 5 REALISTIC Ways for Teachers to Get Healthier This Year 

At my school, one of our teachers offered yoga instruction once a week in her classroom after school. Both male and female teachers enrolled in the class. Another school where I worked allowed teachers to use the fitness room after school if sports teams weren’t using it. A friend of mine also told me that at her school, a group of teachers got together to bring in a fitness instructor once a week for a small fee. Working out with others can be a lot more fun than exercising alone!

3. Make the Most of Time at Your Desk

Exercising at your desk can be another effective way to stay fit, says Jessica Smith in Shape magazine. Smith describes several “sneaky seated moves” that result in a “total-body cardio and strength workout.” Exercises range from seated jumping jacks to “running” at your desk. “Burning muscles,” she says, prove that you’re getting a workout.

Several elementary teachers I know regularly get kids up and moving for a few minutes after they’ve spent an hour working at their desks. Teachers join kids in stretching or jumping jacks, and after 10 minutes, everyone—including the teacher—is ready to get back to work.

As a secondary teacher, I found that leaving my desk and getting out in the hall between classes got me moving and helped me clear my head for the next class. In a more dramatic move, a few teachers I know have added a stand-up desk to their classroom to reduce the time they spend sitting. One fitness expert even suggests replacing your desk chair with a large yoga ball. Of course, there may be downsides to this idea if you’re not really agile!

4. Exercise Your Brain

We know that regular exercise plays a big part in teacher fitness, helping you feel better both physically and mentally (take a dose of 200mg delta-8 THC gummies to keep your stress and anxiety levels down). Lately, meditation and mindfulness have become more popular and accessible through apps.

Headspace, for example, is an app that offers three to 10 minutes of daily meditation exercises. I know teachers who use the app in the quiet of their classroom before the day starts. One teacher has used it for over a year now and says that those few minutes of mindfulness and reflection help her focus and start the day on a positive note.

5. Practice Healthy Eating

Of course, teacher fitness requires both exercise and a healthy diet. If you can pack your own lunch with low-fat yogurt or a turkey sandwich on whole-wheat bread and fresh fruit, you can avoid extra calories. Check out The Kindergartener Connection and Laugh Eat Learn for great suggestions for teacher lunches, including taking snacks for lunch, preparing lunches on the weekends, and making Pinterest-worthy salad jars.

Having lunch at school might be more feasible than making meals in advance for some teachers. If your school offers a salad bar or a sandwich board, it’s easier to make healthy lunch choices. But if you’ve skipped breakfast and are ravenous, it’s hard to avoid extra calories. Some teachers keep healthy snacks like breakfast bars, fruit, or granola in their desks just in case they are pressed for time in the morning. As for the occasional faculty room treats like cookies, doughnuts, or birthday cupcakes—if you can’t resist or want to be sociable, just have half!


  1. 16.09.2015 at 7:53 am

    Jamie – I couldn’t agree more. Core Values are meaningless if they are what Jim Collins has called “Get in the Game” values. Nobody would argue that honesty is a bad value to have, but it is a “get in the game” value. It is not unique and doesn’t differentiate one company’s culture over another. In comparison, the “have each others backs” example you provide is great, because clearly not all companies, few in fact, have this as a core value. I believe the most important part of values after discovering those which are truly unique for an organization, is to LIVE the values and to make them clear and then ensure they are non-negotiable. Hiring and Firing should be built upon a foundation of core values, and that includes hiring and firing of employees, of course, but also of partners, and even clients/members/customers. Values alignment only happens if you are relentless, but you can’t be relentless about something unclear, so I love your post for helping folks understand the need for clear and meaningful values at the CORE. Thanks for sharing these thoughts!

  2. 17.09.2015 at 11:02 am

    Jamie, Thanks for this article. I agree with you, when organizations have core values that are aligned with their strategic goals then a path to success begins to emerge that creates a shared language around who we are, what we do and how we succeed.

  3. 17.09.2015 at 6:57 pm

    Agree with your premise about living your shared values.
    In our book “Triple Crown Leadership: Building Excellent, Ethical, and Enduring Organizations,” we advocate that everyone should have two jobs: their regular job and to be a steward for the culture with an irrevocable license to lead by the shared values. That means standing up and speaking up to defend and embody the shared values, even to the hierarchical leaders.
    I learned this lesson the hard way over the years when caring colleagues called my behavior as inconsistent with our shared values, and I acknowledged them for their courage in speaking up.
    Our organizations jelled and then soared.