Every New Year many of us aspire to be healthier. Yet, 12 days into 2016, many students have already failed to follow through on their fitness and health goals. Here are some suggestions to get you back on track before that Freshman 15 becomes the ‘I’m-too-busy-building-my-career-to-focus-on-fitness-heart-disease-inducing-65.’
- Sign up for back-to-back classes in Buchanan and Forestry, or vice-versa. The 1.2 kilometre distance is impossible to cover in 10 minutes at the average walking speed of 5 km/h, ensuring a heart rate increasing run.
- Do you crave the succulent savings of Triple O’s, but feel rich regret after every burger? Well you better hurry your bum to UBC’s very own Sprouts, because every Friday from 11:30 – 1:30 they serve up a by-donation, BYOC (bring your own container) vegetarian meal.
- All UBC REC classes are free to drop in and test out from January 11 – January 17. UBC offers dozens of “fitness, yoga, Pilates, dance, and martial arts classes and boot camps” that are a fun way to get healthy, find a new hobby, and make some new friends.
- UBC REC also has a bunch of intramural leagues and fitness events like Gladiator and the Fit Mix Challenge. Sign up and pay the entrance fee so you’ll feel guilty if you don't show up.
- Are you a commuter student who is too far away from campus to bike or walk (or at least one that tells themselves that?) When you next head to the bus stop, consider standing about 50-100m further away than normal. When you see the bus coming, you better start running. Bonus fitness challenge: missing the bus ensures you will be running to class too.
- During the week, both Sprouts and its offshoot Seedlings serve up inexpensive vegetarian food at two on campus locations. Scared of vegetarians? Don’t worry they won’t bite, they are vegetarians after all.
- Are you someone who values crushing personal bests, racing against the clock, and/or is entirely unconfident in their team sport capabilities? The UBC Aquatic Centre is free for students, and includes a lap pool, sauna, hot tub, diving boards and a small gym. All of these services are available subject to the drop in schedule so be sure to check it out beforehand to avoid feeling inferior when you compare yourself to the UBC Swim Team.
- Don’t bother with the Stair-Climber at the gym. Instead, always study on the top floor of any building you enter. In fact, every time you enter a building, head up to the top floor. The views from the top are absolutely gorgeous, and a good reminder of why UBC’s campus is often considered to be one of the most beautiful in Canada.
Hopefully some of these suggestions help you kick-start a healthy 2016. For other health related resources, or for support in achieving your non-fitness or diet related goals, the UBC student resource page offers links to many useful on campus resources.