Physical activity is a must for keeping yourself healthy and happy.
At the beginning of this course, we told you to start giving some thought to your physical fitness by making simple changes: walking more around campus, taking stairs, etc. But today we're going to get much more in-depth about how to maximize your physical fitness this semester.
It's all about finding the fitness goals that work best for you. As Jessi Kneeland, certified personal trainer and fitness expert in New York City, told BuzzFeed Life, "College is a very vulnerable time, especially for young women, to get caught up in this group mindset of being very critical of their bodies."
Whatever you goals may be, we're here to help you accomplish them this semester. And remember — any physical activity is better than no physical activity. You can do this!
Before you can start really going after your fitness goals, the first step is to build the motivation you need to exercise regularly.
It's OK to start slow! The minimum amount of exercise you should aim for is 15 to 30 minutes, three days a week. Aim to accomplish at least that — you can add more workout time to your schedule as the semester goes along.
Schedule your exercise time! You're used to having a schedule for classes, activities, and more. Just add in a block of exercise and attempt to stick to it.
If a gym fee is included in your tuition, think of working out as not wasting your money. Plus, college gyms are often some of the biggest and best-equipped gyms out there — and you don't have to pay an extra fee for them
Work out and study at the same time. Bring your readings to the gym and go through them while you're on a machine so you can kill two birds with one stone.
Invest in basic equipment to keep in your dorm room! If you've got a yoga mat or some free weights lying around, it's easier to get in your daily activity even if you don't feel like heading to the gym.
Use a friend as a gym buddy. You'll be able to strengthen your friendship and get fit at the same time!
LEARN SOME EASY WORKOUTS
There are plenty of ways to get your exercise while at college — plans that don't take up too much of your precious time while still giving big impact.
Try a simple bodyweight workout if you're intimidated by weights. Here's one example of a workout you can follow: Start a clock, and immediately do 10 push-ups in perfect form. When you're done with the push-ups, go straight into jumping jacks until the clock reads 1:00. Then move on to the next move, spider lunges. Do 10 of those (total, not per side) with good form, and then jumping jacks until the next minute is up. Then move on to the next move — 10 perfect reps of jumping lunges, and then do jumping jacks until the end of the minute. And finish up with 10 perfect walkouts. (To see how to do each exercise with perfect form, here's a guide.)
Use the internet to your advantage with these free workout videos — and they all take 30 minutes or less.
Learn how to run properly. For example, don't stretch before a run unless it involves dynamic movement. Static stretching (aka holding a muscle in a fixed position for about 30 seconds) "has actually been shown to increase the risk of injury and reduce performance if done before a run," Jason Fitzgerald, USATF-certified running coach, told BuzzFeed Life.