Whatever your reasons for exercising it is important to just do it! The first step in starting a workout routine is to figure out a time for each day that you want to work out. It will help fight those winter blues, I promise.
Remember, you want to work out a minimum of 3 days a week for good health benefits. For the best health benefits, many recommend 30 minutes a day of moderate to intense activity. Think you don’t have time to work in a workout? I challenge you to schedule in an hour every day for a workout. This gives you time to get ready and cool down from your workout. Personally, I give myself an hour and a half time space because I know that it takes me a while to cool down after an intense workout. Check out my blog about time management! All Work and No Play: How To Create a Balanced Schedule
Whether you go to the SRSC, HPER (now SPH), stay in your room, or (if you’re lucky like me) have access to a workout room in your building, pick the place you prefer to do your workouts. You aren’t married to one place to work out, but it is nice to have somewhere you know how long it takes to get to so you can schedule it into your time!
There are so many workouts out there, how will you choose? Personally, I like to get a solid 15-20 minutes of cardio and then move on to abs, upper body, and lower body. I tend to focus on either upper or lower body and alternate between them every day, but I always do some ab work. Some studies have shown that lifting weights burns more calories because you continue to burn calories even after you stop working out. Me? I like to balance between cardio and weights. I love the feeling of a good cardio sweat, and following up with weight lifting makes me feel more confident and strong.
So whether you run, bike, climb, elliptical, swim or jump choose what makes you feel best! Since we are on a large campus, taking a brisk walk to class instead of taking a bus is a great way to get your body moving. Here is a great resource about the benefits of exercise http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/health/
The first week of an exercise routine is relatively easy to keep up with. It is the first week; it is new and exciting. Be aware that the second and third week are going to be more difficult to follow, but once you struggle through them you will be able to work out every day! If you feel yourself becoming bored with your routine switch it up! If you work out inside a lot, take your exercises outside. If you always run for cardio, maybe get on a bike or do some jump rope. If you’re looking for inspiration, if you just search Google for “workouts” you will find plenty of different routines!
Remember that you create your own workout. The most important thing is that you are happy and healthy! Exercise because you love your body, not because you hate it.
Good luck, and remember, if Santa can do it, so can you!
Be on the lookout for my next blog post about eating healthy while living in an apartment!
P.S.. if you are anyone you know is struggling with body image, a helpful resource at IU is COPE. The link is below.