Stephanie Santorico on bodybuilding, little dogs, and pumpkin beer

September 25, 2019

Stephanie Santorico is a statistician who likes to incorporate wellness into her life. Her five things illustrate how healthy living includes both physical and mental components.

Stephen Santorico portrait at the Nspire Sports League Competition

1. Nspire Sports League Competition for Figure

Santorico works with a trainer at the Body Shaping Company to prepare for bodybuilding competitions. The type of lifting Santorico does is “very upper-body-centric.” This photograph shows the hard work that goes into training—“physically, emotionally, and mentally,” Santorico said.

Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland

2. The Dark Hedges in Northern Ireland

Santorico believes traveling promotes mental health. The Dark Hedges are “beautiful, peaceful, and a little mystical,” she said. Naturally, awe-inspiring landscapes can transport people into mindful states.

Mardi Gras Indian Chief

3. Mardi Gras Indian

For Santorico, traveling is also important for “learning about different cultures and seeing how people do things differently.” Santorico has a special fondness for New Orleans and its Mardi Gras Indians, who represent mixed racial and musical influences. It is said that in the 1740s and 1750s, enslaved Africans fled to the bayous of Louisiana, where they met Native Americans. The beaded costumes of the Mardi Gras Indians, which can weigh up to 100 pounds, celebrate the complex intermingling of African American and Native American cultures. 

photo of three pet dogs

4. Luna, Clover and Watson

This little pack “is definitely related to my mental health,” Santorico explains. Having dogs reminds her to relax, exercise, and play, all of which reduce stress. Sometimes when she works at home, one of her dogs keeps asking her to “throw the ball … over and over again,” basically reminding her to get up and move.

Denver Beer Company patio

5. Hey! Pumpkin Brew by Denver Beer Company

“I love our microbrews and I’m a huge pumpkin fan,” Santorico admits. She may be conscious of healthy eating, but she enjoys Denver’s award-winning beers, especially Hey! Pumpkin by Denver Beer Company. It’s seasonal, so it reminds her of fall and leaves changing—which is a beautiful thing.

Professor Stephanie Santorico

Professor and Director of Statistical Programs, Stephanie Santorico, PhD, takes an inclusive approach to wellbeing: “Health is really everything; you have to have the physical, the mental pieces of learning new things, your peace.” Santorico even incorporates health into her research: she focuses on applying statistical analysis to health-related issues such as genetics and genomics.