Looking after your physical and mental wellbeing whilst living in the ‘campus bubble’ during lockdown: (Part 1) – OurWarwick
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Looking after your physical and mental wellbeing whilst living in the ‘campus bubble’ during lockdown: (Part 1)

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (the)
Toni Babarinde | Politics and Sociology Contact Toni
Feel free to ask me about anything pertaining to life…
Find out more about me Contact Toni

Hi guys,

I hope that you are all doing well.

From talking to others and based my own experience, I know that living on campus (especially for long periods of time) can feel like a bubble. Before coming to Warwick, I would hear students talk about Warwick sometimes feeling like a ‘mini-student town’ or a ‘secluded bubble’ that was cut off from the outside world. Though I could kind of understand what they were talking about, I didn’t fully realise what their sentiments meant until after I started university.

This is my fourth year of study here, three of which I have lived on-campus for and one of which I have lived off-campus. I have realised that given the convenient proximity of everyday facilities needed for student life such as; grocery stores (e.g. Rootes and in Cannon Park ), on-campus restaurants and the university’s different campuses all being situated next to one another, that one may be easily susceptible to the mundane cycles of flat life, occasional short walks to shop at Tesco and (at least before the transition to online classes) attending nearby lectures and seminars. Due to the impact of the current lockdown restrictions, this may be even more likely.

Lockdown has meant that the ‘buzz’ of Warwick campus that is wholeheartedly unlike no other and is usually experienced from things like; indulging in diverse international cuisine at the monthly food markets, to attending creative student-led productions at the Warwick Art Centre to participating in outdoor events like movie nights in the piazza and in-person society gatherings has all been temporarily put on hold. Consequently, it may be easy for some students living on campus to also lose some of the ‘buzz’ that colours their everyday life as the lively activities of student life has dampened. It is also easy to fall into physical inactivity and endless seclusion in one’s accommodation which can impact one’s mental wellbeing.

But there is no need to worry as through adjusting to the new climate that has developed from mostly empty campus throughout this academic year, I have cultivated new ways to still enjoy the gems that daily life on campus has to offer and best ways to maintain physical and mental wellbeing.

Here is what has helped me this academic year:

Exploring campus’ nature parks –

As someone who loves nature, moving from the congested city of London to the outskirts of Coventry provided the perfect opportunity to explore the endless unpolluted open space and the beauty of the outdoors. I have appreciated the scenery both on and surrounding campus even more since the lockdown started last year. Not only has this has enabled me to clear my mind and get some fresh air during study breaks but it has also ensured that I maintain my fitness and stay at a healthy weight. I have found that engaging in these long walks has allowed me to feel less confined on campus and even meet some of the local community members (from a safe social distance) along with their adorable dogs 😊.

One of my favourite nature parks to walk through is the Tocil Wood Nature Reserve. During the springtime you notice a wide array of lavender flowers blossoming as the old season wanes and the new season steadily approaches. From the abundance of trees collated together to the sound temperament of the Tocil lakes that come to life every so often when a family of geese decides to explore its depths to the harmonious melodies of birds chirping and narrow soil paths that weave effortlessly through the reserve fields. All of these elements can transform your walk into an exhilarating adventure and engulf you with an undeniable wave of serenity that may not always be felt when immersed by student crowds on the main campus or in your accommodation building.

Long walks through the surrounding Warwickshire area –

Another area that I adore visiting whilst living on campus is the Warwick University to Kenilworth 5km walking route. I usually choose to undertake this walk on weekends when I have more free time or when I am in desperate need of exercise due to days of physical inactivity and slight overindulgence in comfort foods😂. I usually start this walk from the path next to the Cryfield sports pavilion. The ability to venture off-campus and explore the soulful depths of the forests adjacent to uni creates a pleasurable and gratifying experience. It enables you to engage in reflective thought and overlook some of the ample, lavish fields and hills within Warwickshire. However, one thing I would advise is that you go with a friend if you can as the walks can lead to remote areas in which it may be easy to become lost for newbies (I am speaking from experience🤣). I personally go both by myself and with friends when I can. Furthermore, I find that I regularly encounter other walkers, students and families, so it is not completely isolated and I do feel more confident to navigate the area with the help of my phone’s GPS now that I am a finalist.

I hope that you have enjoyed reading my tips so far, in my next blog I will continue with this topic by delving into more ways that I have re-energised my physical and mental wellbeing during life on campus in lockdown.

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (the)
Toni Babarinde | Politics and Sociology Contact Toni
Feel free to ask me about anything pertaining to life…
Find out more about me Contact Toni

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