Makenna, as a student, you are already pretty busy. Can you tell us about your experience here at UAMS and how you balance school and a healthy lifestyle?
“Busy” could literally be my middle name. Outside of classwork and clinical time spent for school, I work as a student sonographer for both UAMS and Baptist Medical Center. I am also employed as a spin instructor with CliqueCycle, where I teach four regularly scheduled classes a week. My last, but not least, occupation is one I’ve held for several years: horseback riding instructor. I keep a detailed planner that helps me stay organized in my personal and professional life. My experience with UAMS has been wonderful. The diagnostic medical sonography program has been challenging, but keeps my interest, and I love that you continue to learn and grow in the field even after graduation. My instructors are equally as impressive as the program, which is most likely the reason my experience has been so wonderful.
If you were to have a new student ask you for tips on being able to eat healthfully and exercise while in school, what tips would you give?
There are several tips I’d like to share: 1) Stop making excuses. Being busy is part of life. If you WANT to do something, you make time for it. Everyone can carve out a few hours a week to put toward exercising. 2) Find an exercise you enjoy. If you despise going to the gym or doing certain activities, then try something different. There are so many options, try them all out. 3) Don’t keep what you don’t need to eat in the house. If you’re stocked up on junk food, you’ll eat the junk food. Buy food that tastes good AND is good for you 4) Change up your meals. Personally, I get Blue Apron shipped, but only once a month to reduce cost and to add to the meals I normally keep in rotation.
What is your favorite type of workout, if you had to choose?
If I could choose only one type of workout, I would choose spin, absolutely, hands down. However, not every spin class is the same — so I’d have to clarify — I’d choose CliqueCycle.
How do you keep your stress levels under control outside of exercise?
Luckily, working out is a stress reliever for me. Obviously, that’s not the case for all. Outside of exercising, I relieve stress by doing what I’m most passionate about — riding horses. Not only do I ride for fun, but I compete in barrel races around and outside of the state. Being around horses and doing what I love is one of the most cathartic actions I can choose to do for myself.