Hello, my Bruin Fitness Pals! I hope you are having a great spring quarter so far! Speaking of spring, do you know what that means? Spring cleaning! Although that usually refers to actual cleaning, we’re going to help you spruce up your fitness routine.
Here’s some tips to help revamp your fitness regiment:
1. Try group exercise/training!
If you’re wondering what group exercise/training entails, think SoulCycle and CrossFit! These types of group exercise/training are amazing because they are way cheaper than having to get a personal trainer and way more motivational than working out by yourself. You get the same kind of training as you would when exercising by yourself, but now you just have a whole host of other people going through the same thing and cheering you on.
If you haven’t tried any type of group exercise/training before, you can definitely find a type that you’d enjoy! Although this type of exercise isn’t for everyone, it is a really fun way to get back into exercising if you’ve been lacking some motivation or variety in your workouts! For some more pros and cons of group exercise training, check out this article!
If you are interested in an option at UCLA, UCLA Rec offers group exercise classes if you purchase their fitness pass, which is $25 a quarter! And if you find that maybe group exercise isn’t for you, the fitness pass allows you to take loads of other classes there as well!
2. Try “functional training”!
Now if you’re like me and were a bit unsure as to what “functional training” is, the workout really is in its name! Functional fitness refers to a type of training that helps you enhance your ability to perform daily activities, from moving your furniture to carrying your many bags of groceries home.
The main areas of muscles that this type of workout focuses on are the abs, hips, and scapulas. A great example of this type of training can be found here.
This is a great type of training because it helps improve coordination, balance, and endurance! If you’ve ever needed more of a reason to mix up your exercise routine, this is a great way: help train your muscles to function better just for daily life!
3. Try hitting the outdoors more!
I know that this tip doesn’t sound like anything out of the ordinary but honestly, this is a great way to spruce up your routine! For those of you who typically hit the gym, a change of scenery will rejuvenate you and give you more energy to continue, according to the New York Times.
The outdoor paths also affect how you exercise, as runners flex their ankles more. And since outdoor terrains are more variable, the exercises tend to be more strenuous, which means you get more out of your workout when you exercise outdoors.
So if you are in a time crunch and want to feel happier while exercising, try shifting your workout environment from the indoors to the outdoors! Let that sun raise your exercise spirits!
4. Try a different type of workout!
Whenever I find a great workout, I tend to just stick with it but it does get a bit boring after time. Try a different type of workout! Instead of just circuit training, add in some flexibility training. Instead of just weight training, add in some cardio.
And if you are one of those amazing people who do engage in all kinds of exercise, do some research and see if you can find something you weren’t aware of before.
Changing your routine will help you by preventing injuries, build new muscles, and keep your brain healthy, according to OneMedical. If you continue the same routine, you’ll overuse the muscles that you are always working out and your body won’t be able to heal itself while not building any new muscles, according to The Huffington Post. And as we all know, exercise keeps your brain healthy but if you follow the same routine, you’ll just go on autopilot and stop exercising your brain.
So try new workouts, especially those that you know will train different parts of your body!
5. Try a new genre of exercise or sport!
Photo via CEC and SWC
If you have the time, start trying new genres of exercise! For all you gym-lovers, try all the different types that the gym has to offer! From Zumba to racketball, try out something that you always wanted to try but never got around to.
According to the New York Times, learning a new sport or activity could also help improve your brain activity because it could improve our brain’s ability to control movement. Even though people think that they need to strengthen their brains through academic pursuits, such as sudoku, learning a new activity produces the same results, just on a different, just as important, part of the brain!
And for those of you interested in trying Zumba for the first time or just getting into it more, the Campus Events Commission and Student Wellness Commission are teaming up to put on an amazing Zumba program on Wednesday, May 17th from 8 – 9:30 pm, with celebrity DJ Krewella! If you are interested in learning Zumba from licensed Zumba instructors with a free concert in the background, go to uclacec.eventbrite.com and reserve your ticket! For more information, also check out the event page!
I hope that these tips were helpful for you all when trying to get back into exercising and spring cleaning your fitness routines! Good luck on your fitness journeys and keep moving, amidst the chaos of midterms!
Tiffany Hu is an undergraduate student at UCLA majoring in Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics. She is a blogger for Move Well of the UCLA Healthy Campus Initiative. She is the co-Director of the Student Health Advocates, which focuses on educating students on various intersections of health. Tiffany is also the Special Projects and Alumni Coordinator of the UCLA Care Extender Internship, which helps students volunteer at all departments in the UCLA Medical Centers.