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Fan of Fitness: Beverly Sparks

Beverly Sparks on a kayakWe interviewed Dr. Beverly Sparks, associate dean for Cooperative Extension, to find out how she stays fit…

What motivates you to stay healthy?

My schedule! My work schedule is often pretty hectic and requires a lot of travel. It is hard to be effective if you are not feeling well and lack energy. Another thing that motivates me is being around young people and sharing an interest with them in hiking, golf, yoga and water sports.

What do you enjoy most about exercising?

When I can exercise on a regular basis, I have more energy and sleep better, and it lowers the level of stress/anxiety.

What do you do to stay fit?

In high school I played basketball and wrecked one of my knees. So my exercise usually involves walking/hiking, golf, kayaking or working out with light weights. I recently took up yoga and am enjoying it very much. Believe it or not, when I am traveling, I do a lot of walking in airport terminals, and I take a yoga DVD with me and work out in the hotel room at night.

How do you make time for exercise?

I try to find time throughout the day to “exercise” for short periods of time. Taking the steps instead of the elevator, walking across campus instead of driving, walking through the airport terminal, taking 15 minutes at lunch to get outside and walk… this all adds up at the end of the day. That said, I feel better if I can combine this with three to four exercise sessions per week that are at least 45 minutes in length.