Working out at the gym can be something many students wish they did regularly, but struggle to find the time or motivation to put into practice. It can be easy to convince yourself that you are too busy with school or lack the energy required to workout. While these statements hold some truth, the benefits of working out can far outway the costs.
I had the privilege of chatting with Owen Kurvits, who runs OK Fitness here on campus, and I asked him about the benefits of working out and utilizing the gym.
“It teaches you discipline and diligence; how to make a goal and work towards that goal. Results don’t come quick in the gym, so it’s about consistency. Discipline and Consistency are two of the biggest things I am always preaching to my clients. Those sit on top of the vast amount of physical benefits. The phrase “exercise is medicine” is really true in that everything from heart health to mental health can be impacted.”
Let’s say you have never gone to the gym. Where might you start? I asked Owen what a basic workout could look like for someone starting fresh. “I preach what is often referred to as “functional” or “compound” movements. For your upper body, I try to break it down into two basic zones: a push and pull both horizontally and vertically.” Push-ups and bench presses would be examples of exercises that target those basic motions. “Three main movements you can do in your lower body would include deadlifts, squats and lunges.”
I also asked Owen if he had any insight on finding time to workout. “Time is always people’s first excuse. What you find most important, you will always make time for. To be practical: plan, plan, plan. Know what your week is going to look like, fill into your schedule exactly when you’re going to workout, and when you show up to that workout, know exactly what you’re going to do. Try not to waste time doing research or talking to your friends. You can do a lot with even just half an hour. Know when you’re going to workout what you’re going to do. Show up, do it, and get outta there.”
Ian Speelman, a second year student here at Redeemer, was eager to share about his experiences working out: “I really enjoy that it keeps me on a schedule and keeps me active. It’s also quite satisfying to see the progress I make over time.” He went on to describe how it also helps while doing manual labour, where extra strength and endurance is always beneficial. Improved mental health and stress relief were also mentioned.
Access to the gym is included with being a student at Redeemer, so why not take advantage of it? Look for time in your schedule, a partner to workout with, and hit the gym! The benefits of routine exercise may surprise you.