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Exam season vs. your sport

By TristanBlogger 01 May 2018

When I don’t have regular class times/fixed structure, I notice a necessity for a balance between training and studying...

Now that I am at university in Glasgow, I have found that study periods are a great time to get a good block of training in without actually realising it. This is because your main focus (and your mind) will be on studying and without noticing it you can get in really good shape.

Studying and having exams, as much as they are a nervous time, almost take the pressure of my athletics. For instance, I remember last year during my final exams, I had about 9 exams in one week and I had a 5km road race on Friday evening. That Friday, I had an exam in the morning and after 4 days straight of exams, I had not even considered the race until the afternoon but I ended up running pretty well!

Unfortunately, this can work both ways. Exams can be exhausting. Having distractions outside sport, such as revision and exams, can throw up any kind of performance. We are not in control of how tiring revision is because ultimately the work needs to be done. However, there are advantages to balancing training with other commitments during periods such as exams:

  1. Use training as a way of breaking up revision.
    Training and exercise are great ways to take time away from books and computers, as they allow you to get the blood flowing and you will come back energised and ready to revise again. 
  2. Exercise is a way of reducing stress and anxiety.
    Exams are stressful because an awful lot can ride on them. Sometimes you think the best thing to do is just revise, revise, revise because you are stressed and anxious about an upcoming day. But it's better to do more quality revision rather than quantity.
  3. Training helps you sleep.
    It’s very important to get enough sleep during stressful periods to allow you to reset your system and prepare yourself for the next day. Training helps this because it leaves you physically tired at bedtime, encouraging your body to sleep.
  4. Training can be sociable as well.
    In my sport, training is very sociable and it allows you to interact with friends and other like-minded individuals which is a vital part of your enjoyment and it reduces stress. 

These are just some of a vast number of reasons to continue training throughout exams. Good luck for your exams and training!