How to stay fit on campus: No gym membership required

Nov. 1, 2010

Amy Koumis

So you’re taking sixteen credits and working thirty hours a week. Exercise is an afterthought at best, something that happens between babysitting your sister’s kids and cramming for your chemistry quiz. But even a fifteen-minute workout per day is better than nothing, said Vicki Schober, a doctor at the UCCS Student Health Center. According to Schober, “Sleep, healthy nutrition and then exercise are the top three. If you can do all those things, you’re going to do a lot better with learning and tests.”

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week for healthy adults, which might seem like a lot, but amounts to very little when spread over the space of a few days. Exercise doesn’t always have to be the treadmill or the elliptical. Simple changes like parking further away from classes or following a yoga DVD before bed can make a difference in personal fitness. If you have time between classes, go for a walk instead of heading to the library or student center. Better yet a short, high-intensity workout at the Recreation Center, such as sprinting. can yield the same results as a long, low-intensity workout, like jogging. UCCS is also a cyclist-friendly campus and the Recreation Center (RC) offers bike repair services as well as mountain bike rental.

Scheduling time for exercise is an essential step towards staying fit: find a time to work out every day, or every other day, and stick to it. Keeping track of when you exercise might not seem like a realistic option, but fifteen minutes a day isn’t much – think how many hours a day are spent surfing the internet or rifling through the fridge for leftovers.

Recreational classes are an easy place to start, and will encourage a consistent exercise schedule. If you’re looking for a more individualized program but still need help, personal training is also available at the RC.

For someone who would rather be kayaking down the Arkansas River than lifting weights, UCCS’ Student Outdoor Leadership Expeditions (S.O.L.E) sponsors numerous trips and activities such as hiking, flyfishing, geocaching, skiing and rock climbing. Equipment rental is also available through the program.