Kalie Burton, Lifestyle Editor.
Unless you’re one of those enviable people who have boundless energy to start their day at 5 am with a gym session and a smoothie, exercising while in uni can be challenging. It’s hard to find the motivation and time between coursework, a job, and a social life, but scheduling time to get up and get moving is beneficial in more ways than one. Even twenty minutes of exercise a day will help you sleep better, improve your mental wellness, and boost your health all around. So how do you make that jump into an exercise routine? There are a few factors that can help cultivate an exercise regime that is manageable and attainable, but it truly is down to the individual. If you know you’re not a morning person, setting a goal for getting up at 6 am every morning is setting yourself up for failure. If you set goals that are outside of your habits and behaviour, the chances of success decreases and you may find yourself discouraged and bogged down when you don’t achieve them. Take a look at your day-to-day life and figure out what time of day you generally are free and work from there. If you’re the kind of person who flourishes in classes or in a gym setting, sign up for a membership or enrol in a class. Oftentimes, committing monetarily is motivation enough to go to the gym. If you know that signing up for a gym or class is too much financially or time-wise, try working out at home. Youtube and various apps are fantastic for providing manageable programmes at every level. If you make exercising a priority you’ll start to see a difference both in your fitness and self-image for the better, all it takes is that first step.
For me personally, I’ve found that signing up for classes motivates me more than anything to incorporate exercising into my daily life. I currently am a member of the Queen’s PEC gym, just outside of Botanic Park. They do great student rates and have a full selection of both free and paid classes, as well as having a full gym and pool available for use. Their classes range from spin to Pilates to circuit training, so whatever you’re looking for, they probably have it. At the moment I am taking a new class for the PEC, Barre. Barre has become a bit of a fad in America and London, but it just recently has begun to popularise elsewhere. It incorporates elements of Pilates, ballet, dance, and yoga to strengthen your body in a way that’s both fun and strenuous. Admittedly, I was a bit nervous to try it because I have absolutely no rhythm and my flexibility isn’t great, but I was happy to find the class is suitable for all fitness levels and abilities. It’s set to music and is very upbeat, so if you’re looking for a class that gets you moving and sweating but not feeling like you have to be a fitness star before you join, give Barre a try this semester! All in all, knowing what works best for you is paramount for fitting exercise into your life. Find out what motivates and inspires you, and get out there and get moving.