With the beginning of our very surreal E-learning days, my lifestyle had a complete makeover. My daily routine used to be: wake up, go to school, take classes, do extracurricular activities, come home, sleep, and repeat the steps above.
This is how it looks like now: wake up, open computer, take classes, close computer, sleep, and repeat. You can see, there were some dramatic changes.
I think many people would agree with me, when I say school provides more than academic knowledge and skills. For some people, it could provide a place for socialization and meeting friends, and for others, like me, it is a reason to get out of the house and exercise.
As someone who is moderately health conscious and yet very passively active, one thing I’ve noticed and appreciate is the amount of exercise I get out of just going to school. I walk ten minutes from home to the closest station, walk up and down stairs at the station, and then walk another five minutes from Hiroo station to school (which involves the hill). Attending classes is also a lot of walking, which often requires some stairs. All that is done while carrying heavy bags. Even without PE, a significant amount of exercise is done at school; the hunger that attacks me while before lunchtime will support this argument.
Now that e-learning is taking place, all those benefits are gone. I can’t go outside of the house; although walks are allowed, I’m too tired and reluctant to go out at the end of the day. I can tell my exercise level has definitely decreased because I don’t feel hunger at the regular lunchtime anymore. Even if I did feel it, I only need two-thirds of the usual amount of food to be full —(this has confused my poor father a lot, because he prepares my lunch and he thinks I eat a lot).
Unfortunately, these aren’t the only side effects of e-learning. Quite a few of my friends have noticed that their screen time increased drastically. According to a report by CBS, long screen time can cause eye strains, characterized by the following symptoms: irritation, dried eyes, fatigue, blurred vision, or any combination of the above. The report also adds that blue light or high-energy visible light emitted from screens may result in chronic damages to the retina. This has created a dilemma for people (including me) who watch YouTube videos or go on Netflix as their favourite pastime. I think it’s unfair that they have to give up their favourite pastime just for e-learning, but the risks of lengthened screen time cannot be ignored.
So, what does all this sum up to in the end? e-learning has definite pros and cons that makes it beneficial and disadvantageous under different circumstances. Regardless of its positive aspects, the physical downside of it is undeniably tremendous. One needs to take initiative and be very organized to maintain a healthy lifestyle with e-learning: keep to a schedule similar to the one you had before school closed, utilize exercise videos on YouTube to maintain a healthy metabolism, consciously make “off-screen” times, etc.
I personally prefer going to school rather than staying at home, because it gets my engines running in the morning and lets me stay more active throughout the day. At this point, the only thing I can do is stay healthy and hope that the situation will calm down soon so that we can all be back in school in August.