Student Journalism at San Rafael High School

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Gains Before Daylight

A new zero period weight training course offers more health and wellness for SRHS students.

This school year at San Rafael High School, longtime P.E. teacher Ms. Healy is leading a new Physical Education course called Zero Period Weight Training.

Ms. Healy came up with the class idea four years ago, but was unsuccessful at creating it due to a lack of student interest. This year, filling the class was surprisingly not difficult at all. Forty-one students signed up when they saw the new course opportunity.

Ms. Healy was shocked by the amount of students that joined this first year. “I’m psyched, I’m totally excited about it,” she said. “The best situation for a teacher is when you teach a class where students want to be there, like they sign up to do something they actually want to do.”

“I chose weight training zero period so I could workout at school and learn how to weight lift. I like it so far. What I dislike is waking up early,” said Jennifer Lopez, a sophomore enrolled in the course. 

The weight room was actually remodeled and completed last year, therefore SRHS has a numerous amount of new equipment that is ready to be used. The class is every morning, Monday through Friday, from 7:25 to 8:25 a.m. Every week as well has a day off to rest. It rotates from either Thursday or Friday. 

At the beginning of the year, Ms. Healy opened the course by giving lessons about the human body structure and how to correctly train certain muscle groups with different exercises. Students venture into Ms. Healy’s classroom dressed in workout clothes before 7:25 a.m. They then get ready to learn about a new workout, prepare for a daily warm up, or work towards the day’s objective in the weight room. After around 8:15, students arrange their equipment back and get time to change out and prepare for their first class.

Ashley Signor, a sophomore, said that she wanted to have time to work out in the morning. “I have never been in a gym environment before,” said Signor. “I want to build muscle to become stronger.”

Emily Cardenas, a sophomore, said, “I chose the class so I could have a consistent workout routine that also gave me my PE credits and a free period.”

Every week is different, as Ms. Healy teaches different exercises. She plans out her week and always tries to give it a change. She has plans to spend a day on a yoga class or spin class instead of training. Healy thinks cardio is also an important factor when lifting daily. She also includes different warm ups like running the mile or running a lap around the cross country course. 

“Everyday is different, we do something different everyday. I try to do cardio or a lesson every other week,” said Healy.

“I am a fan of spending a day off lifting to do a yoga or a spin class. We need a day to recover and try something new and fun,” said Lopez.

“I didn’t like the spin class. It wasn’t motivating for me but I really enjoyed the yoga class,” said Cardenas. 

Signor said, “After trying both the yoga and spin class I prefer to do the yoga. It’s nice.”

On the contrary Ashlyn Ochoa, a sophomore also enrolled in the course, said, “I rather do weight training than spend a day off, that is why I chose the class.”

This course is offered along with the normal day P.E classes but also with Hiking, Sailing and Yoga. All these classes offer P.E. credits. This course is so far almost at its capacity, which is Forty-five. Currently there are students who are either sophomores, juniors or seniors. Ms. Healy hopes more students join year after year so the class and students can keep thriving. According to Healy, the school was happy to bring this class to students.

“Counseling was super supportive. Mr. Dominguez was super supportive. They both saw the need to offer more health and wellness related options for students on campus,” said Healy.

Her main objective is to help reach the students goals, and hopes to be the teacher for the next school year.

“My goal is not just for students to get a good workout but also to learn how to be comfortable walking into a gym anywhere in the world knowing what to do and how,” said Healy.

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