Windows Down, Radio On

Taken on my last Heinz Field run.

The snow is gone, and the windows are down. As the end of the school year is right around the corner and the sun is shining across the bluff, it seems as though people are beginning to change their styles, outfits, and even their attitudes to match the weather. With these changes taking place, one major worry in the subconscious of many students is getting the perfect summer body. I mean, honestly, the first day the sun came out and people were declaring it “spring”, there were more people on the Power Center treadmills than I have ever seen since I’ve gone to Duquesne. There are many things that influence this mindset. Some of these things include popular television shows like Jersey Shore, music videos showing parties on the beach with hundreds of sculpted abs, mall advertisements of David Beckham, and bathing suit catalogs that come out when there is still snow on the ground.

It seems to me (maybe because I’m an integrated marketing major) that these aspects of popular culture can definitely impact the attitudes of the teen/college/even adult age groups. I include adults too because I know many of my friends’ moms that tan on a regular basis and still dress like they are going to college parties. Anyway, the point is that the important thing to do is be yourself. Working out and looking good is never a bad thing. However, just because the sun is out does not mean that you are required to look like a poster in a mall or an Italian stud on a reality show. Run, lift weights, sure, go ahead and do a diet if you want. But never do these things for the wrong reasons. The important thing to keep in mind as we approach warmer, sunnier weather is to always be comfortable with who you are as a person no matter what.

If you are looking for some tips on how to become healthier as summer approaches, I can’t blame you. When the sun is out, optimism comes to life in many people. I know on a sunny day I wake up sometimes and think to myself, “I’m going on a great run today”, “I’m going to really work hard on everything I do”, “I am very happy with my life”, etc.┬áHere are a few things that have helped me enjoy the sunshine to the fullest so far. I’m sure you probably have your own list of things that you like to do as well, but if you want to use any of these, feel free…

  • Take a jog to Heinz Field or PNC Park. I literally do this all the time when it is nice out. The exercise, the view, and the peaceful atmosphere melt away stress and worries (along with excess fat from the weekends). I have introduced 3 or 4 friends to this already, and they do it on a regular basis as well now.
  • Go to Market Square with a friend or significant other and get a bite to eat. They have so many outdoor tables and there are always some open seats to enjoy a meal in a great outdoor atmosphere.
  • Read, listen to music, or hang out with friends outside. A-Walk is a great place to sit and converse with friends in between classes. There are benches all over campus that allow you to appreciate the atmosphere of Duquesne University.
  • Drive with the windows down. Play some smooth music. Seems simple, but it’s great.

All of these things can contribute to a great day in Pittsburgh while taking advantage of the weather. Just remember while choosing your summer activities not to plan your appearance, mindset, and goals on pop culture and what other people think. Being yourself is the true way to enhance your optimistic lifestyle. There is no greater freedom.

– Jake Kurtz

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