Staying Healthy in Law School

Ali's Run

The Law School annually hosts a 5K, called Ali’s Run, for bone marrow research as a part of Be the Match in honor of Professor Rob Kaplan’s late daughter Ali.

by 2L Jamie Eisner

In law school, our lives seem to revolve around our school work, teams, journals, etc., which can make it easy for your physical and mental health to take a back seat if you’re not too careful.  Although it might be tempting to throw all of your time into work and lose track of other things that matter, it’s still important to take time to keep yourself healthy.  Sometimes it’s difficult to find that balance, and everyone has to find what works for them personally, but if you’re stuck, here are a few ideas to help get you started:

  1. Find people who share similar fitness goals and interests

It’s always more fun to workout with friends or in a group setting to help keep you motivated.  Working out with friends is also a great way to hold yourself accountable.  For example, I love going to Orangetheory, and there is a big group of law students who also enjoy going, so we have started to coordinate our workouts to all go together.  It’s a fun way to get to know more law students and to hold each other accountable.  I also find that I’m less likely to bail on a workout if I know I’m supposed to do the class with one or more friends.

  1. Take advantage of the W&M campus rec classes – they’re free!

Barre classes, spin classes, pilates classes – you name it, the rec center probably has it.  What I love about group fitness classes is that there is an instructor telling you what to do, the classes have a set timeframe (so you know exactly when you can get out of there!), and the group mentality is a great way to stay motivated during the class.  You also don’t have to think about planning a workout ahead of time because the instructor is there to guide you through every step of the workout.  Even better, some of the instructors are law students!

  1. Make health(ier) food choices

For snacks, the vending machines may not seem like the “healthiest” option on campus, but they are definitely not the worst option!  If you look closely, they do have some great options if you’re looking for a lighter snack, such as a pack of the reduced fat baked Lays for only 140 calories.  Another trick to is to pack your own lunch.  Admittedly, free pizza every day is very tempting, but if possible, it might be smart to resist at least a few times a week.  If you pack your own lunch, you know exactly what you’re eating and can choose to pack healthier meals—eating better makes you feel better!

  1. Don’t forget to treat yourself!!

Yes, yes, being healthy is awesome, but it’s also awesome to grab a beer and some tacos at Precarious or enjoy a burger at Amber Ox or Dog Street.  Part of being healthy is also finding that balance and enjoying yourself!

Military Monday: Active Duty in Law School

This week in honor of Veterans Day, we asked Army Reserve member Sirena Rowland, a 2L at W&M Law, to reflect on her time serving while in law school. 

Sirena Rowland stands between two other Army Reserve colleagues.

Sirena Rowland, center, commissioned Army Reserves immediately after undergrad.

Being in law school while serving in the Army Reserve has provided me a very unique and rewarding experience throughout my time at William and Mary so far. When I initially commissioned following college, I had a few options. I could do an educational delay and put off my service obligation until law school was complete, I could enter the active duty component right away and go to law school later on, or I could enter the reserves and serve concurrently while I went to law school. Ultimately, I decided that the last of these paths was the best one for me. I took a year off between undergrad and law school in order to attend training and spend a few months on active duty orders at my unit to accomplish this. I believe this time helped me grow as a young officer because it gave me a glimpse of what the Army is actually like, and it helped propel me into my career path for law school.

While there are challenges to being in the reserve while being a student, such as attending training, meeting deadlines, and just overall juggling “work” on top of law school, the experience I feel I’ve gained makes it all worth it.  My current position is completely unrelated to what I do in school – I serve as a medical readiness officer, so I track all the medical information for the personnel in my unit, but when I’m at my unit I gain more than medical knowledge. I’m constantly learning new things, and I’m able to work with higher ranking officers who share their experiences with me. These conversations and experiences are something that I hope to carry with me into the future when I (hopefully) transition into the active duty side of the army as a judge advocate general. Being in the reserve and being a law student has solidified my decision that the Army JAG Corps is the right career for me. Overall, if I could give one piece of advice to prospective or current law students looking to join the military, it would be to dive in head first and learn from as many people as you can. You can never gather too much information, and there is nothing like hands on experience in the military. Even if you’re gaining information outside of what you think you want to do, or if you’re making mistakes, it’s well worth your while, and every experience is something that you can benefit from in the future.