Practical Ways of Getting Fit

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Practical Ways of Getting Fit

By: Kelvin Claveria | OLC Student Writer
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The student life is a busy one. You have quizzes, tests, papers and group projects. If that's not enough, you also have volunteer work. You might even be working part-time or you might be doing co-op right now. And of course you also have to make time for friends and family!

With all these things going on, fitness can sometimes take a lower priority. But it really shouldn't. If you want to do better with your studies, physical activity should be part of your routine. Studies suggest that there is a positive relationship between physical activity and academic performance. Researchers cite numerous reasons why this positive relationship exists. Personally, I find that working out helps me relax and forget about school for a little while. This then helps me be more focused when I get back to studying.

Remaining fit throughout your academic life is actually easier than it sounds. If you're finding it challenging to find the time to exercise, here are some tips:

  1. Get off Facebook. You need 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity a day to be physically active. With a little discipline, most of us can fit that time in. In fact, some of us probably spend more time growing crops on Farmville on Facebook. Turn your TV or your computer off and make a commitment to be more physically active.
  2. Do it early. A common excuse from students is that they're too tired to go to the gym after classes. If you go early - ideally, before your first class or before you work - you might find that you have more energy throughout the day. You also might find that there are fewer patrons at the gym early in the morning - that means less time waiting to use the machines and getting your workout done faster.
  3. Set regular days & times when you must workout. You're busy, so you need flexibility in your schedule. But for at least 30 days, try to write down a schedule on when you're working out and stick to it! It takes about 30 days for fitness to become a habit, so by strictly adhering to a schedule for this period of time, you're increasing your chances of maintaining the habit.
  4. Join a group class. Weight training is not for everyone. For some, a more social physical activity is appealing. SFU Recreation has some awesome and affordable group classes you can choose from. Group classes also have a set day and time, so you'll find that you're automatically adjusting your schedule to be able to make it.
  5. Hire a personal trainer. A good personal trainer will keep your schedule in mind when designing your program. For instance, if you're pressed for time, a trainer might suggest supersets to help you save some time while in the gym. A personal trainer can also help you get motivated throughout the semester and can keep your workout fresh and exciting. You canhire a personal trainer through SFU Recreation.

Each of us has a different way of making time for exercise. Experiment with what works for you, then stick to it.

Beyond the Article:

Physical fitness is just one component of your overall wellness. Visit the SFU Wellness portal to assess your overall wellness and get connected to on- and off-campus resources to help you stay balanced.

Posted on February 12, 2012