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Work out tips for beginners

Photo by: Kaylin King | Staff Photographer
Bobcats are staying committed to their workout routines with the help of group exercise classes that are teaching them how to stay healthy and reach their fitness goals.

Trying to find a workout routine to get back into shape can be overwhelming in a world overrun with Google searches. The Internet is full of exercises others swear by. Figuring out what is best for a beginner can pose a problem and can ultimately discourage someone from even starting.

Simple ways to get started include body weight exercises, compound exercises and cardio. Squats and planks are both good examples of body weight exercises for anyone who has not worked out in a while. They can be done anywhere and do not require expensive equipment.

“Compound exercises are good for working both your upper and lower body at the same time,” said Jenevieve Struk, an instructor at the university’s Recreation Center.

An example of a compound move is to go from a squat to a shoulder press while using weights. With one move, the whole body is being worked.

When it comes to cardio, the usual assumption is in order to see any results, a run has to be all about distance, which can be daunting or boring. What works better is interval training, Struk said. An example of interval training is alternating between running a short distance to a fast walk break.

Students who don’t want to work out alone can find a group. The Rec offers group exercise classes all day Monday through Thursday, four classes on Friday and two on Sunday. The Friday classes are free and a $60 pass gives a student access to every class all semester.

Finding the time to exercise or choosing how often to exercise poses another hurdle for a beginner.

“I would start off working out every other day, but definitely listen to your body,” said Margaret Bush, a personal trainer.

Working out when you are really sore could lead to serious injuries and ultimately be more detrimental than helpful. One of the most difficult aspects of working out is staying motivated.

Once results begin to show, it gets easier to stay on track.

“Something I always tell my classes is to set weekly goals and challenges to keep themselves motivated,” said Bush.

Meeting goals gives anyone a sense of achievement that can fuel motivation.

Cutting through the clutter to find something that works is not always easy, but it can be done. Ultimately, a person has to be determined to succeed.

By Caitlin Peeler | Special to the Star