Tips To Developing A Good Exercising Habbits

Let’s face it, college life can be busy and overwhelming. Between 4-5 classes worth of studying and assignments, lectures, socializing, w...

Let’s face it, college life can be busy and overwhelming. Between 4-5 classes worth of studying and assignments, lectures, socializing, work, family visits and getting enough sleep (well, trying to), it can be difficult to maintain consistent healthy habits. With a little time management and commitment, however, even the busiest of college students can ensure they’re staying sufficiently fit and active. According to Harvard’s School of Public Health, the minimum amount of exercise needed for a healthy adult is 2-2 and a half hours of moderate exercise a week, 1 and 1/4 hours of vigorous exercise per week, or some combination of the two. Here are some tips on how to manage your exercising habits and staying fit.

Get Enough Rest: You’re not going to want to get up and go for that morning jog if you’ve only gotten three or four hours of sleep! There is no magic number of hours one should sleep, it really depends on you and what your body needs. Studies have shown, however, that too much sleep (well over eight hours) can have negative effects, as well as short sleeping periods (4-5 hours). Experiment and see what works best for you. When you wake up ready for the day, you know you’ve hit YOUR “magic number”.

Start Small: If you aren’t already in the habit of exercising, don’t despair if you don’t make the 2 hour a week cut! If thirty minutes a day four or five days a week seems intimidating, try exercising in 10 minute intervals when you have the chance. Even if you start with only fifteen minutes a day, this is better than nothing! Don’t wear yourself out all at once, or you’ll never be able to maintain the new habit.

Incorporate exercise in your day to day activities: Park further from the front of the store, walk to class, take the stairs, do whatever you need to do to add a little more physical activity here and there throughout the day. The more active you become, the easier it will be to keep exercising.

Plan for thirty minutes at least four days a week at a time you can manage: Depending on your work/class schedule, you may want to set aside your exercise time in the morning, evening or afternoon. You may even have to schedule your session at different times of the day depending on the day of the week. A set time everyday, however, will help you commit to sticking with your goals, so try planning on exercising at the same time of day if you can. If you don’t exercise at least four times a week, you will have trouble forming your habit and you’ll be more likely to fall off the wagon. Often, skipping exercise for three days in a row will start to break down your routine, so avoid this when you can!

Do something you enjoy: If you don’t like driving to the gym and sweating all over a treadmill, don’t do it! Perhaps you enjoy a brisk walk in the morning, shooting a few hoops on the court with your friends, taking an evening jog or doing yoga at home. Try different kinds of exercise and see what you like best! There are plenty of ways to exercise, so it’s completely nonsensical to make yourself do something you hate! Exercise time should be invigorating and enjoyable, or else you’ll never maintain your habit.

Make it fun! Listen to music or rope in an exercise buddy. If you’d rather exercise alone, find a way to make it more fun for you. If you’re an avid music listener, perhaps you’d like to break out the headphones. Big reader? Listen to a book on tape! If you’re more of a socializer, find one of your friends that always wants to get in the exercise habit. The buddy system is a great option as it helps you both keep each other accountable, and it will become a fun hang-out session rather than a drag.

Join a biking, running, hiking team or get involved with a community sport: You may find that the thing that really pushes you to get active is to join a sport with a lot of people already involved. Many cities and towns have a running group, hiking group, biking group or sports team that is always looking for new members. This can be a great opportunity to meet new people if you’ve moved to a new area to go to your school. Take advantage of any organization that’s already out there!

Keep these tips in mind as you begin to commit yourself to a healthier lifestyle. Regular exercise will bring you tons of benefits, including better sleep, mental focus, higher energy levels, not to mention you’ll be looking at your best! Whether you’re so busy you have to break your exercise down into ten minute sessions or if you’ve got the time to spend an hour a day, every college student can find the time to develop the life-long habit of regular exercise. Get out there and move! I promise you’ll grow to love it.



This post was written by: Victoria Hewlett 


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