Students are on a tight budget, but like everyone else, they still need to exercise. The good news is there’s no need to pay for a gym membership to stay fit — you can work out without even leaving your living space. The following exercises will give you a full-body workout by combining strength training and cardio. Plus, they can be performed by people of all fitness levels.
The glutes are the largest muscle in the body, which means you can maximize calorie burn by working them. A simple yet effective way to exercise this muscle group is the basic squat. With your feet shoulder-width apart, squat back, attempting to lower all the way down to 90 degrees. Aim for 20 reps, rest, and then repeat for three sets total.
Next, it’s time for some cardio. When you do jumping jacks, lift your feet as high off the ground as possible and bring your hands to meet above your head. This easy exercise is a great way to elevate your heart rate. Land softly — to protect both your knees and the relationship with your neighbours downstairs. Aim for 25 reps, three times.
Make the most of this powerful lower-body exercise by lunging in all directions: forward, backward, left, and right. Each time, bend your knee to a 90-degree angle. You can also add a cardio element by jumping to change legs. Aim to do 10 reps on each leg, three times.
Next in the circuit, you’ll give your legs a break with some pushups. If you’re out of practice, you can do pushups on your knees until you build up the strength for full pushups. Do as many as you can while maintaining good form, increasing the amount of reps each time you come back to this workout.
The gold standards of core workouts are sit-ups and crunches. For sit-ups, raise your upper body all the way up, and have someone hold your feet if needed. Or, do crunches by raising your chest as high as you can. Aim to do between 20 and 25, take a break, then repeat two times.
One of the most challenging exercises you can do at home without equipment is the burpee. From standing, lower yourself into an upper pushup position, then jump your feet toward your hands and stand back up. To make burpees extra challenging, do a pushup before you stand up. Start with two sets of 15 and increase to three sets of 12 when you’re ready.
After all those burpees, just holding a plank may sound easy — but you’ll soon find that it’s not. Start a timer and aim to hold a plank position for at least a minute. If you can do longer, go for it.
Next, continue working your abs with some bicycle crunches. Lie on your back, put your hands behind your head, and raise your legs off the floor. As you extend one leg out straight, pull the other leg toward your body and bring the opposite elbow to meet the knee. Switch sides to complete one full rep. Do 25 reps, completing three sets in total.
Finally, wrap up your workout with a little more cardio. A dynamic plyometric move, the frog jump is simply a jump in a squat position. Touch the floor with your hands as your feet hit the ground for some extra toning.
It’s easy to do these exercises when you have your own space, but trying to work out in a traditional dorm may be a little challenging. If you’re seeking a bit more space and independence, consider options off campus, such as apartments near Brock University. With a student residence like Regent Student Living, lease you can even have access to an onsite fitness centre that’s open 24 hours a day, allowing you to fit a full training session into your busy schedule.